Laika has announced it will produce The Night Gardener, a new stop-motion noir feature from Ozark creator Bill Dubuque that will “paint an unflinching portrait of sacrifice, self-reliance and revenge.”
Here’s what the studio has revealed about the project thus far:
- The film is pitched as a “gritty neo-noir folktale.” Unspooling in rural Missouri, it turns on a young man who struggles to keep his family in the midst of a tragedy.
- Best known for its kids and family fare such as Coraline, ParaNorman, and Kubo and the Two Strings, Laika’s latest proposal represents a departure both stylistically and narratively.
- Laika president and CEO Travis Knight (Kubo and the Two Strings, Bumblebee) will direct.
- Bill Dubuque – creator of Netflix’s Ozark – created, developed, and wrote the screenplay for The Night Gardener.
- “The Night Gardener is a beautiful and timeless story that quickens the pulse as often as it breaks the heart,” said Knight in a release. “Bill is a masterful storyteller. He’s crafted a lyrical world layered with complex characters, provocative ideas, and keenly felt emotion. It’s gonna be one helluva movie.”
- “I’m delighted that Travis Knight saw in The Night Gardener a story worthy of the time intensive process and collective talent of Laika’s in-house artisans,” added Dubuque. “Laika’s creativity and dedication to detail is, in my opinion, as close as one can come to conjuring storytelling magic.”
- Knight will be a busy man in the coming months. He’s also lined up to direct Laika’s Wildwood, based on the bestselling novel written by Colin Meloy, lead singer and songwriter for The Decemberists, and illustrated by artist Carson Ellis.