Few decades have consistently produced as many animated delights as the one we happen to be in right now. Sure, Pixar’s best stuff remains almost entirely in the aughts, but from 2010 on, other studios have found their own feet in the animation game and the variety of animated films available alone makes this decade remarkable in this particular world. And that’s ignoring all the great movies that have been made thanks largely to animators over the last six years, from this year’s uproarious Nuts! and the long-awaited release of Only Yesterday to last year’s Shaun the Sheep Movie, a rare, sensational spin-off of the Wallace & Gromit universe started by Aardman Animation.
The Shaun the Sheep Movie garnered the studio and Lionsgate, who put out the movie stateside, an Academy Award nomination alongside Anamolisa, Inside Out, and Boy and The World. On that notice alone, the news this morning via Deadline that Shaun the Sheep Movie 2 is already in the works at Aardman and StudioCanal doesn’t come as anything like a big surprise. The movie will be directed by Richard Starzak, who was a chief creative collaborator on the first movie, and the movie is set to go into pre-production in January 2017. No word as to any cast members being asked to come back or to come aboard for the sequel as of right now, but one must imagine that an announcement about such things will come along by the time pre-production gets underway.
There’s little hope at this point that the second Shaun the Sheep movie will be as revelatory as Wallace & Gromit in The Curse of the Were-Rabbit but the original movie was quite a lot of fun with plenty of guffaws to keep everyone entertained. If the second movie can pull off something similar or even better by the time it hits theaters in what will likely be 2018, it will be enough for me to rally for a third movie rather than continue my rally for a follow-up to Were-Rabbit.