It might need been an existential query for the creators of the beloved stop-motion animation characters Wallace and Gromit and Shaun the Sheep: What would occur in the event that they ran out of clay?
Followers spent the weekend worrying in regards to the destiny of Aardman Animations when the British newspaper The Telegraph reported that the studio, based mostly in Bristol, England, can be going through its “hour of knead” after the one producer of the particular clay utilized in its creations had closed its doorways earlier this yr. Having purchased what it might, The Telegraph reported, the studio had sufficient clay left to make just one extra movie, a brand new “Wallace and Gromit” characteristic coming subsequent yr.
However no, the studio’s foundations aren’t crumbling. Aardman Animations mentioned on Monday it had loads of clay to maintain molding.
Followers had “completely no want to fret,” the studio mentioned in a press release. The studio has “excessive ranges of current shares of modeling clay to service present and future productions,” it mentioned.
The producer of the clay, Newclay Merchandise, introduced final month that it had stopped promoting its merchandise in March. The corporate had change into recognized for Lewis Newplast, a Plasticine beloved by animators that’s malleable sufficient to mildew however robust sufficient to maintain its form throughout filming. Newclay Merchandise didn’t instantly reply to a request for remark.
However its administrators, Paul and Valerie Dearing, advised The Telegraph that they have been retiring and had determined to shut the corporate’s doorways after they couldn’t discover anybody to take it over. They mentioned Aardman had purchased about 400 kilograms, or nearly 900 kilos, of the remaining Newplast inventory.
Greater than a ton of modeling clay is ordered for every of the studio’s characteristic movies, and about half that’s used to form the characters, in response to modelers for Aardman.
Aardman on Monday sought to reassure followers, telling them that after its provides of Newplast have been gone, it had plans to transition to new inventory.
“Very like Wallace in his workshop, now we have been tinkering away behind the scenes for fairly a while,” it mentioned, referring to the eccentric inventor who’s one in every of Aardman’s most beloved characters.
A sequel, “Hen Run: Daybreak of the Nugget,” is ready to be launched on Netflix on Dec. 15, and the studio will even launch a brand new “Wallace & Gromit” movie in 2024, premiering on Netflix and the BBC.