Derry Girls star joins voice cast for Aardman’s Lloyd of the Flies

Multi-award-winning independent animation studio Aardman has launched a new teaser from its latest comedy series, Lloyd of the Flies, to celebrate Insect Week. The studio has also announced Jamie-Lee O’Donnell as a new addition to the voice cast.

Lloyd of the Flies shines a light on the weird and wonderful world of insects. The series follows the adventures of Lloyd B Fly, a housefly and the middle child of 453. Lloyd lives with his parents, his little sister PB and their 225 maggot siblings inside a compost bin. In the series, Lloyd is always accompanied by his best and only friend, Abacus Woodlouse, PB, and eccentric tag-along, Cornea Butterfly. Together they explore the strange world beyond the compost bin, where there is no shortage of lessons for Lloyd to very nearly learn.


Developed in-house and supported by the BFI-managed Young Audiences Content Fund (YACF), the new series is Aardman’s first “in-house” CGI production. The studio is working to develop a broad range of partnerships around Lloyd of the Flies, developing the brand’s presence across all major touchpoints including consumer products, attractions and interactive entertainment. An AR experience app will be launched to coincide with the series.

Jamie-Lee O’Donnell (Derry Girls, Screw) also joins the cast as the voice of Louse Hunter, a spider who only hunts woodlice for the challenge and thrill of the chase, and Yard the bumble bee who regularly frequents the local Pancake Diner.

She stars alongside Tom Rosenthal (Friday Night Dinner, Plebs) who voices Lloyd, Alex Lawther (The End of the F***ing World, Black Mirror), who voices Lloyd’s best friend Abacus, and Lauren Patel (Everybody’s Talking About Jamie) who takes on the role of PB. Teresa Gallagher plays Cornea Butterfly, with Callum Scott Howells (It’s A Sin) voicing Lloyd’s nemesis, Berry.

Sean Clarke, Managing Director of Aardman, says: “Launching our first in-house CGI series marks an exciting new development for Aardman as well as the advent of new talent from the studio bringing their ideas to life. With a host of incredible voices alongside exceptional crew, drawn from all over the world, we can’t wait to share Lloyd of the Flies with audiences from this autumn. This comedic new series will entertain the whole family and we are sure that it will create a real buzz in living rooms.”

The 52 x 11’ animated sitcom series will be premiering on CiTV in September 2022.

Ki appointed creative partner for Morph’s Epic Art Adventure

Family-focused marketing agency Kids Industries (Ki) has today announced that it is the creative partner for a major new initiative – Morph’s Epic Art Adventure in London, set to be the first accessible, step-free cultural event of its kind.

The launch event, which took place at The Museum of London earlier this week, announced the partnership between Whizz-Kidz, Wild in Art, and Aardman – the award-winning animation studio and creator of the childhood-favourite and much-loved animated character, Morph.

The spectacular public art trail and tourist attraction will see up to 70 super-sized sculptures of Morph take over the streets of central London in summer 2023. The step-free family-friendly art trail of colourful Morphs will span iconic London landmarks including St Pauls, Tate Modern, the Tower of London, Shakespeare’s Globe and Borough Market.

Whizz-Kidz is embarking on this fun, fully accessible trail across London to raise awareness of the need for better access and inclusion for young wheelchair users, and to raise vital funds to support their work.

The money raised will enable the charity to provide life-changing wheelchairs and confidence-building opportunities for young wheelchair users in the capital and across the UK. The Morph sculptures will be canvases for conversations about diversity and inclusion for wheelchair users.

Each of the 70 Morph sculptures stands at 6ft tall and will be adorned with bespoke designs from a range of artists, supported by sponsors including Sky, Barratt Developments, EY, Kids Industries, Evenbreak, and Govia Thameslink Railway Ltd. Once the trail has closed, each of the bespoke Morph sculptures will be auctioned with the aim of raising £500,000 for Whizz-Kidz.

A trail app, website, map, guidebook and dedicated social media channels will enable trail-goers to navigate the route, tracking down each sculpture and unlocking fun facts and rewards.

Sarah Pugh, chief executive of Whizz-Kidz, says: “We are delighted to launch Morph’s Epic Art Adventure in London. This accessible and fun trail will bring the London business community, creative artists, schools and families together in the summer of 2023. The awareness and money raised will have a huge legacy for young wheelchair users we support for years to come.”

“We are totally thrilled to be working with the excellent charity Whizz-Kidz on London’s first step-free art trail,” says Peter Lord, the co-founder of Aardman and creator of Morph. “I’m sure that local residents and visitors to London – young and old – will also be inspired to get creative and join Morph for an Epic Art Adventure.”

Gary Pope, CEO and Co-Founder at Ki, adds: We are super excited to support the important work Whizz-Kidz does as the official creative partner on such an important project – giving our time and resources to make this a huge success.

“The work that Whizz-Kidz does is incredible. Morph is incredible. London is incredible. Mashing the three together is pure genius – of course we wanted to be involved!

“One of our six immovable pillars of childhood, what we call the Super 6, is Diversity & Inclusion. As such, we are committed to equality in all its forms and to have the chance to play a small part in ensuring more children are able experience the epic-ness of London through a truly accessible epic adventure trail of Morphs is something our whole team stands behind.”

WarnerMedia to broadcast Brave Bunnies in 20 new territories

Glowberry, the Ukrainian creator of popular kids’ series Brave Bunnies, has announced a licensing agreement with WarnerMedia to broadcast the series in 20 territories across Southeast Asia, as well as Australia and New Zealand.

The deal was secured for Glowberry by its exclusive content distribution partner, Aardman, who have been leading the charge for Brave Bunnies with tier-one broadcasters around the world.

The series will premiere on the Cartoonito pre-school programming block available daily on Cartoon Network, which launched on March 28 in Southeast Asia, and will debut in Australia and New Zealand in July.

The series will also be available to stream in Southeast Asia, Taiwan and Hong Kong on HBO GO. This latest deal strengthens the relationship with WarnerMedia as Brave Bunnies was also acquired by HBO Max for LATAM. The series will premiere mid-2022.

Olga Cherepanova, author and creative producer of Brave Bunnies, says: “We are delighted that a show we have been working on so passionately has been expanding so fast. I’m happy that alongside WarnerMedia we will reach a new audience in APAC. Our partner Aardman continues to do a great job signing up the best broadcast partners for our bunnies.”

Robin Gladman, Head of Acquisitions at Aardman, comments: “It’s a great pleasure to be working with our friends at Glowberry, to help bring Brave Bunnies to the world. The team from Ukraine are constantly in our thoughts in their current plight. Friendship and diversity sit at the core of this fabulous show, these messages are more important now than ever, and we are thrilled Warner have decided to come on board across so many territories.”

Aardman and Wild in Art announce creative partnership

Animation studio Aardman has entered into a creative partnership with Wild in Art that will produce public art trails featuring sculptures of well-loved characters Morph and Shaun the Sheep in towns and cities across Britain, from January 2022.

The characters will provide a 3D canvas, and creative inspiration, for a wealth of art and design from a carefully curated mix of well-known and emerging artists. The new trails will further Wild in Art’s mission to bring art out of the gallery and create shared experiences, whilst the learning programmes and activations develop the next generation of artists.

The first-ever sculpture trail to feature Morph launched on 29 January this year when ‘Morph’s Epic Art Adventure’ arrived in North Tyneside. This first event, hosted by North Tyneside Council, will see Morph of the North with twenty 1.8m-tall Morph sculptures decorated by commissioned artists from across the country with a wide range of themes, including floral, character designs and plays on the word ‘Morph’.

This is the second Wild in Art trail to take place in and around North Tyneside Town Centre, following the hugely successful delivery of The Snowman and The Snowdog in Winter 2020. The aim is to drive footfall into town centres, supporting the local economy, whilst also encouraging families to get outdoors and active, and nurture an interest in art and creativity in the community.

The opportunity to host a ‘Morph’s Epic Art Adventure’ trail is open to towns and cities across the UK. Shaun the Sheep will be the second collaboration as part of this new partnership, and news and opportunities for this concept will be announced soon.

Charlie Langhorne, Managing Director and Co-founder of Wild in Art said: “We are delighted to continue our partnership with Aardman and to bring these internationally renowned characters to art trails across the UK.

“Morph and Shaun the Sheep will bring colour and creativity to host locations. Each sculpture will be a conversation starter, with a different story to tell, allowing residents and visitors to explore their town or city from a different perspective. It’s a Covid-friendly way for people to socialise, support local artists and our charity partners/a local charity and enjoy some exercise in the fresh air.

“We’ve got some exciting plans in development and we look forward to revealing more host locations in the coming months.”

Rob Goodchild , Commercial Director at Aardman, added: “We are very happy to be working with the great team at Wild in Art to bring more art trails featuring our characters to the streets of the UK, including the inaugural Morph art trail – a character that’s encouraged creativity in generations of kids since the seventies. We look forward to finding fun and creative angles to connect our characters with each location and inspire people – young and old – to get creative.”



Flair and Aardman sculpt new deal for Plasticine

Flair GP and Aardman have signed a two-year deal to introduce new licensed lines to Flair’s Plasticine collection. The partnership will introduce two of Aardman’s much-loved animated characters to Flair’s popular heritage collection: Shaun the Sheep and Morph.

Available from July 2022, these licensed sets aim to offer children hours of creative play, allowing them to recreate their favourite on-screen characters.

The first addition to the range will be the Plasticine Shaun the Sheep Farmyard Fun set, which lets kids create their own Shaun the Sheep characters from Plasticine, complete with the illusion of a woolly texture. Once modelled, the characters can be displayed in the fun 3D farmyard scene.

The second line is the Plasticine Morph Animation Maker, which will allow children to create their own Morph – the iconic clay character who made his TV debut on the children’s BBC art show Take Hart in the 1970s and is back in a new Sky Kids series: The Epic Adventures of Morph. Kids can use the props and accessories to create Morph and then place him on the famous desktop scene to bring to life their favourite stop-motion sketches from the hit TV show.

Speaking of the collaboration, Iulia Toader, Marketing Manager, Flair GP, says: “We are so excited to announce this incredible partnership with Aardman. Aardman traditionally use modelling clay for their animations, and the most famous modelling material on the market is Plasticine – so there couldn’t be a better synergy between the brands. We know these lines are going to be a real hit with children and their families.

“The lines will launch during the summer holidays, and with it will come a marketing drive to raise further awareness among children and their parents, to ensure their success at retail.”

Adam Vincent-Garland, Business Development Manager at Aardman, adds: “We’re delighted to be working with Flair GP on these new Plasticine lines. Modelling is integral to the history of Aardman and our best-loved animations, so it really is a fitting partnership – and one that we hope will inspire the next generation of 3D modellers and animators.”


New Chicken Run and Wallace & Gromit adventures in the works from Aardman

Aardman Animation Studio has announced the cast lineup for its latest feature film Chicken Run: Dawn of the Nugget, and confirmed a brand-new Wallace & Gromit adventure for 2024.

Chicken Run: Dawn of the Nugget, the sequel to Chicken Run, the highest-grossing stop-motion animated film of all time, will be coming exclusively to Netflix in 2023.

Like its 2000 predecessor, Chicken Run: Dawn of the Nugget is a comedy action-adventure, in which our chicken heroes have to break into an impenetrable fortress. Ginger and Rocky will be played by Thandiwe Newton and Zachary Levi, respectively, while Bella Ramsey will voice their headstrong daughter, Molly. Reprising their roles are Jane Horrocks (Babs), Imelda Staunton (Bunty) and Lynn Ferguson (Mac), joined by new additions Josie Sedgwick-Davies (Frizzle), David Bradley (Fowler), Romesh Ranganathan (Nick), Daniel Mays (Fetcher) and Nick Mohammed (Dr. Fry). Sam Fell (Flushed Away and Oscar-nominated ParaNorman) will direct the film, on which production is already underway.

The BBC has also announced a brand-new Wallace & Gromit adventure for British audiences in 2024.

From the creative mind of Nick Park and the first Wallace & Gromit film since the 2008 BAFTA-winning and Oscar-nominated A Matter of Loaf and Death, the as-yet-untitled new film focuses on Gromit’s concern that Wallace has become over-dependant on his inventions – which proves justified when Wallace invents a “smart gnome” that seems to develop a mind of its own. As events spiral out of control, it falls to Gromit to put aside his qualms and battle sinister forces or Wallace may never be able to invent again…

The BBC has a long relationship with Aardman and this announcement follows the success of the latest Shaun the Sheep caper The Flight Before Christmas, which aired on BBC One over the festive period.

Sean Clarke, MD of Aardman, says: “Wallace and Gromit are so loved by everyone at Aardman – they’re like family to us, and we couldn’t be more excited to be creating a brand-new film for them to star in. When Nick came up with the concept for a ‘smart gnome’, we all agreed that Wallace would find the idea irresistible – despite warnings from Gromit, who is wise beyond his (dog) years. We’re sure audiences will find the story irresistible too.”

The film will premiere on the BBC in the UK, and on Netflix in the rest of the world. It will be directed by Nick Park (creator of Wallace & Gromit and Shaun the Sheep) and Merlin Crossingham (Creative Director, Wallace & Gromit and Animation Director, Early Man) with the story written by Nick Park and Mark Burton (Madagascar, Wallace & Gromit: The Curse of the Were-Rabbit, Shaun the Sheep Movie) and the screenplay by Mark Burton.

Shaun the Sheep gets merry in Merino in new partnership with The Woolmark Company

To mark the launch of Shaun the Sheep’s latest film Shaun the Sheep: The Flight Before Christmas, multi-award-winning animation studio Aardman has created a unique short film with The Woolmark Company, celebrating planet-friendly fibres this festive season.

The short film, which can be watched here, sees Shaun and the flock busily knitting Christmas jumpers from 100% pure wool to gift during the holidays.

“Christmas has come early for us as we deliver another wonderful partnership with The Woolmark Company,” says Aardman Marketing Director Lucy Wendover. “We’re delighted to celebrate the gift of giving natural wool jumpers and Shaun the Sheep is the perfect fit. The respect of nature and sustainability are key themes for Shaun the Sheep and increasingly important to the whole studio, so it’s great to have this at the heart of the campaign.”

“We’re thrilled to partner once again with Aardman on another Shaun the Sheep film,” adds John Roberts, CEO of Australian Wool Innovation (parent company of The Woolmark Company).

“One of Woolmark’s key pillars is to champion conscious consumption and drive more sustainable purchasing pathways. There’s never been a better time than the festive season to champion this message and encourage people to think about what they gift to friends and family.

“Shaun and his flock choose to gift wool jumpers, knowing this natural fibre is not only long-lasting but its emotional value is strong as it is handed down to from one owner to the next.”

UK department store Fenwick has joined Shaun and friends to celebrate the eco-credentials of wool, creating an edit of seasonal woolly essentials available in store and online. Shop the range here.

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Aardman launches newest IP, The Very Small Creatures

Aardman has announced the launch of its newest IP, a series for 1- to 3-year-olds called The Very Small Creatures.

The Very Small Creatures, the first spin-off from the studio’s hugely popular Morph series, follows the adventures of five toddler-like clay creatures who explore a child’s play area when no one’s around – learning about their physical world, themselves and each other. The 20×3″ colourful and characterful stop-motion episodes are available on Sky Kids from today.

A bonus Christmas episode, ‘A Very Small Christmas’, will also be part of a Sky Kids Christmas Favourites compilation on Sky Showcase and will be available on Sky Kids on Demand and NOW from 19 December.

The Very Small Creatures is a series directorial debut for Aardman talent Lucy Izzard, who is both an animator and director. “I’m delighted to be able to share my five new besties with you,” she says. “I hope these colourful characters thrill, excite and entertain a whole new host of very small people, as they watch The Very Small Creatures leap, bounce and ‘bottom-pop’ around their screens with all the joyous fun that curiosity brings.”

Lucy Murphy, Director of Kids Content, UK & ROI at Sky, adds: “You don’t have to be a child to find Aardman’s incredible stop-motion animations truly enchanting. It’s been a real privilege to work with Lucy Izzard, whose unique creative vision for The Very Small Creatures is sure to delight the whole family this festive season.”

The Very Small Creatures is available now on Sky Kids and NOW. Territories include the UK, Germany and Italy

Signature Publishing launches first Aardman arts and crafts magazine, Colour It! Aardman: Get Crafty

The entirety of the Aardman cast of characters are being brought together for the very first time, through the launch of a children’s magazine titled, Colour It! Aardman: Get Crafty.

The result of a new partnership between the Bristol-headquartered studio and Signature Publishing, Colour It! Aardman: Get Crafty will celebrate the much loved Aardman characters, including the likes of Shaun the Sheep, Wallace & Gromit, Morph and Timmy Time, as well as the creativity that goes into drawing and modelling them.

The magazine will feature activities like colouring, crafting and baking, while covering topics like How to Draw Wallace & Gromit, and how to create a Shaun figurine from the supplied modelling clay.

“We are thrilled to work on this very special collaboration with such an esteemed studio as Aardman, bringing their iconic characters to life through creative play and colouring in their very own unique children’s magazine,” said Rachel Craven, commercial and advertising manager at Signature Publishing.

Ian Downes of Start Licensing, said: “We are delighted to be working with Signature Publishing on this Aardman magazine.  They were quick to recognise how well Aardman and their characters were suited to an arts and crafts magazine. They have used the characters really well and this is a great example of how a focussed licensing partnership should work.”

Colour It! Aardman: Get Crafty launched on August 4th and is billed as the ‘ideal magazine to entertain and inspire children during the summer holidays.’ Each issue comes with a bumper colouring set including modelling clay to craft Shaun with, pens, colouring pencils and stickers.

Hasbro, Science Museum, and Aardman among Brand Licensing Europe 2021 line-up

MGA Entertainment, Hasbro Consumer Products, Mattel Brands, and the Science Museum Group are among the names confirmed to be exhibiting at this year’s Brand Licensing Europe as the industry readies to meet face-to-face once again at ExCeL London this November.

With just over four months until the in-person return of the London licensing event, the show’s organiser has detailed the first wave of exhibitors confirmed to take part in the trade event this year, spanning a range of countries and categories, from TV production and movie studios, to leaders in the toy space.

Confirmed exhibitors include The Smurfs, Magic Light Pictures, Crunchyroll, Asterix, and Aardman, alongside the likes of Sanrio, SEGA, National Basketball Association, and Gallimard Jeunesse. They join a roster of high profile toy companies who each continue to build on their global franchises through consumer products and licensing. These include Hasbro, Mattel, and MGA Entertainment.

Anna Knight, VP of Licensing, Informa Markets, said: “We are thrilled that BLE will return in-person this year. The support we’ve received from the industry has been amazing, proving that there is a genuine desire for the brand licensing community to reconnect face-to-face once more.

“We are delighted to welcome so many exhibitors already, including GO-N and The Scouts Store who will be new to the floor for 2021, and a wide range of European brands returning including Sophie La Girafe, FC Barcelona, Sagoo, Spain Licensing Pavilion, Tour de France and many more.”

Yana Esieva, Junior PR Manager, Masha and the Bear, said: “We are extremely happy Brand Licensing Europe will gather us in person again! This tough year made us realise the importance of in-person connections and communication, and now we’re anxiously waiting to reconnect face-to-face with our industry friends and partners.”

The exhibitor list is available to view on the BLE website, here.