Months ago, we heard the sad news that Disney had halted production on the next stop-motion animated film from Coraline director Henry Selick. The film apparently wasn't on track to meet its release date - although deeper problems were thought to exist within the Mouse House - and Disney pulled the plug on the film, previously called Shademaker, now going by The Shadow King. Selick then tried to court Laika into taking on the project, but nothing came of that, and it seemed it was time to fear the worst. But life's a happy song, and it seems things are back on track after all.
Cartoon Brew is reporting that the Nightmare Before Christmas director is shopping the film around at the European Film Market in Berlin. As such, things have really come along with the film; it's now being produced by Josh Penn (Beasts of the Southern Wild) and has assembled something of a crew: director of photography Peter Sorg (Frankenweenie, Coraline), head animator Eric Leighton (The Nightmare Before Christmas, Coraline), Pixar alum-production designer Lou Romano (The Incredibles, Up), editor Wyatt Jones (Tron: Legacy, Rango) and composer Bruno Coulais (Coraline, The Secret of Kells). The film also has a voice cast including Jaden Betts, Pamela Adlon, Brendon Gleeson, Arrested Development's Jeffrey Tambor and Frankenweenie's Catherine O’Hara. Distributor K5 International is also on board. Check out the film's exciting and intriguing new synopsis, and some artwork from the film (via ComingSoon.net), courtesy of K5 - which gives us a glimpse at The Shadow King's visual style - below:
Hap Dagger, a nine-year-old orphan, hides his fantastically weird hands from a cruel world. But when a Living Shadow Girl teaches him to make amazing hand shadows that come alive, his hands become incredible weapons in a shadow war against a ravenous Monster who could destroy Hap’s brother and all of New York.
Wow, exciting stuff! As usual with Selick, it sounds dark, inventive and great! I can't wait to hear more.