New 'Wallace & Gromit' in early stages of development confirms Nick Park

Tom Butler
Senior Editor
Nick Park (with his creations Wallace and Gromit), whose film 'Wallace and Gromit; Curse of the Were-Rabbit' was nominated for Best Animation for the forthcoming Academy Awards, London, Tuesday 31 January 2006. (Ian West/PA)

As Wallace & Gromit’s Oscar-nominated first adventure A Grand Day Out celebrates its 30th anniversary, its creator Nick Park has confirmed he’s plotting their return to screens.

The stop motion duo have appeared in four short films and one feature-length film, but now it sounds like they’re making a comeback, over 10 years after their last outing A Matter of Loaf and Death debuted on BBC One on Christmas Day, 2008.

“[It’s] early days,” Park tells Yahoo Movies UK, “but I'm working on some new Wallace & Gromit ideas.”

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Although Park didn’t elaborate any further about what form the new Wallace & Gromit “ideas” may take, he hinted that it’s likely to be another short film, rather than a feature-length film like 2005’s The Curse of the Were-Rabbit.

“The problem with animations, I feel like - same with my colleagues at Aardman - we have so many ideas, it just takes so long with a feature film to get them out,” Park said earlier in our wide-ranging chat about the characters’ anniversary, and new musical tour Wallace & Gromit’s Musical Marvels.

“So sometimes shorts are more appealing. I have got other ideas.”

Wallace & Gromit are hitting the road in Spring 2019 with a touring orchestral show. The tour will consist of 38 performances at 18 major venues across the UK in May and June 2019. (Carrot Productions/Aardman)

Park says he sees The Wrong Trousers as a high point for the animated series, signalling that he sees it as a template for the duo’s slapstick adventures.

The Wrong Trousers is probably the film I look to as the model, so to speak, the model [Wallace & Gromit] film,” Park shares. “There's strength in the simplicity of ideas.”

1993’s The Wrong Trousers saw Wallace & Gromit driven apart by their new lodger Feathers McGraw. The penguin, who disguised himself as a chicken with a rubber glove on his head, used Wallace’s techno-trousers to steal a priceless jewel, but Gromit soon rumbled his plan leading to one of the greatest chase sequences in TV and film history.

The Wrong Trousers won the 1993 Academy Award for Best Animated Short Film. (BBC/Aardman)

The film ended with Feathers being locked up in the local zoo by police, so surely now, 26 years later, the notorious criminal must be due for parole.

“I thought a lot about that,” admits Park. “It is a big question as to where is he now?”

C’mon Nick, give the fans what they want: The Wrong Trousers 2: The return of Feathers McGraw.

Peter Sallis (left) is presented with a suprise birthday cake, by Wallace & Gromit creator Nick Park, on the occasion of his 87th birthday, whilst in the studio recording for the forthcoming Wallace & Gromit TV special 'A Matter of Loaf & Death', (TX: TBC Christmas 2008) at The Sound Company, in London.

One person who won’t return for new Wallace & Gromit is Peter Sallis, the voice of Wallace, who sadly died in 2017, aged 96. Park says the 30th anniversary will be bittersweet without Sallis around, paying tribute to the Last of the Summer Wine star’s sense of humour.

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“He was always very funny, and a very witty guy all the time,” shares Park, “On mic, and off mic as well.”

To celebrate the 30th Anniversary of Wallace & Gromit, Wallace & Gromit’s Musical Marvels is going on tour.

For venues and ticket info visit: https://www.carrotproductions.com/wallace-and-gromit/

The production features a live orchestral interactive experience which sees specially created animation and Wallace & Gromit: The Wrong Trousers accompanied by a live orchestra, a unique opportunity for Aardman lovers to experience the films in an entirely new way.

Keep an eye out for the rest of our interview with Nick Park about the origins of Wallace & Gromit coming to Yahoo Movies UK soon.