Phil Knight's Portland, Ore., animation studio Laika is wrapping production on its first feature, the stop-motion Coraline, directed by Laika supervising director Henry Selick (The Nightmare Before Christmas), according to Variety.
Now, Laika is taking out three pitches, any one of which could be its next project. Ultimately, it may produce all three:
Here Be Monsters! from the books by Alan Snow, is a steampunk-flavored story set in a fantasy version of 1850s London. The hero is a 12-year-old who's grown up in an underground world beneath the city that is full of monsters but must find his way in the world when he moves to the surface to live like a normal boy.
British writer Irena Brignell is penning the script; Antony Stacchi (Open Season) would direct.
Jack and Ben, an original for CG animation, revolves around brother bluebirds who get into a dangerous road-rally-style race to Florida along the north-south migration route. Barry Cook (Mulan) would direct, David Skelly is writing and Ric Sluiter (Lilo & Stitch) is art director.
Paranorman," an original idea by Coraline story chief Chris Butler, concerns a small town under a secret curse. Only a 13-year-old boy can keep the town from being overrun by zombies, but no one will listen to him.
The film could be stop-motion or CG. Butler is writer and co-director. The project is being developed under Selick's close supervision.