Gromit Gets Cheesed Off

Posted in Film on February, 02 2007 7:10 AM

Aardman Animations and DreamWorks have announced an amicable end to their business association.

A four film relationship was established in 2000 with the release of Chicken Run. Then followed Curse of The Were-Rabbit in 2005 and Flushed Away in 2006.

Despite the Oscar and general popularity of Curse of The Were-Rabbit it just didn't make enough money to break even. At the time, forecasts from DreamWorks guessed that Flushed Away was also going to cost them dearly.

And so it did. Costing over £70M to make but only drawing about £25M from the box office is not anyone's idea of good business practice. It certainly does not go down well in Hollywood.

Have you done the maths? That's only three of the original four film deal. Crood Awakening has been co-written by John Cleese has a release date for 2008. Whether either side will still risk the potential losses of releasing it, is unknown and a wrangle over the rights of the production could keep the project in development hell for decades.

Aardman and DreamWorks have both voiced their calm resignation over the split. Aardman spokesperson, Arthur Sheriff, said, "We always knew America would be a hard task for us … our strength is our English sense of humour and we want to continue with that."

And long may they do so, no matter what Hollywood thinks.

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