Andy Serkis to direct Animal Farm for Netflix
James R | On 02, Aug 2018
Andy Serkis will direct a new film based on Animal Farm for Netflix.
George Orwell’s ‘fairy story’, a scathing satire of Soviet communism, is as potent now as it was in 1945. It sees the animals of Manor Farm rise up against the drunken Mr Jones, after he has neglected his livestock for too long. In a burst of insurgent fervour, he is deposed, with the pigs taking charge of the newly named Animal Farm. Everything runs smoothly, productivity soars, and all animals are well-fed and happy – but when Boxer the workhorse is betrayed, the horrifying extent of the pigs’ corruption is revealed, as this new society is founded on the principle that all animals are equal… but some are more equal than others.
Serkis will direct a performance-capture adaptation of the novella, a project that has been on his wish list for years – in 2012, he was attached to star in a film of the book, when Orwell’s estate signed a deal with the Planet of the Apes star’s production company, The Imaginarium.
This new deal by Netflix comes only days after Serkis’ Mowgli movie was acquired by the streaming giant, after Warner Bros. got cold feet about the film’s financial prospects theatrically.
It also marks a reunion for Andy Serkis and Matt Reeves, following Dawn of the Planet of the Apes and War for the Planet of the Apes. 6th & Idaho’s Matt Reeves, Rafi Crohn and Adam Kassan will produce alongside The Imaginarium’s Serkis and Jonathan Cavendish. It also marks the continuing relationship between Netflix and Reeves, after the Cloverfield director signed an overall deal with the streaming service.
“We are incredibly excited to have finally found the perfect creative home in Netflix for this extraordinarily zeitgeist work by George Orwell,” said Serkis in a statement. “On top of that, to be re-united with my great friend Matt Reeves — with his acute sensitivity, storytelling intelligence and honesty and command in this realm — is to have the very best scenario for our long-held passion to bring this fable alive.”
“Andy is such an incredible artist — he is truly a force of nature and a beautiful soul,” added Reeves. “To be able to work with him again and with Jonathan and Netflix to see Orwell’s classic tale brought to life in a totally new and exciting way is an absolute dream.”