Aardman Features has started production on "Arthur Christmas" and "Pirates!" with Sony on board to release both.
"Pirates!" is based on Gideon Defoe-written book "The Pirates! (in an Adventure with Scientists)." Peter Lord, director of the outrageously funny "Chicken Run," will direct the film. The story follows a cheerful but unlucky pirate band who strive to win the Pirate of the Year trophy.
Jeff Newitt co-helms the film and Defoe is writting the screenplay.
CGI project "Arthur Christmas" apprently reveals Santa Claus' high-tech operation. Aardman and Sony Pictures Imageworks are working on the animation for the film which Sarah Smith will direct. Peter Baynham ("Borat") and Smith write the screenplay.
Sony and Aardman signed a a three-year, first-look deal in 2007.