Cheese, sidecars, tank tops and heroic hens. Could there be a more quintessentially British world than that created by the Aardman Animations studio?


It is, of course, a world that harks back to a charming and heart-warming past that didn’t really exist. But considering the grim realities of life in the world today, is it any surprise that millions of us find it irresistible?

What is remarkable is that more than 30 years on from the creation of Wallace and Gromit, the Aardman magic still works. Despite a flirtation with Hollywood that ended after three films, the Bristol-based animation studio still does things the way it always has: with characters hand-crafted out of modelling clay, much as they were when Aardman first made Morph in the '70s.

That commitment to stop-motion animation is as much part of Aardman’s DNA today as it was then, even in the age of CGI and AI. But it takes time. 23 years after the launch of Chicken Run – the story of chickens breaking free of their farm, inspired by The Great Escape – Aardman is about to unleash the sequel on Netflix.

Chicken Run: Dawn of the Nugget is just as daft and charming as the original. “The whole notion is totally absurd,” Peter Lord, co-founder of the studio, tells us in this week's Radio Times magazine. “We do what makes us laugh: silent comedy and slapstick.”

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As such, a new Aardman adventure if the perfect way to launch our preview of the best Christmas TV for all the family.

Chicken Run: Dawn of the Nugget on Radio Times cover

Also in this week’s Radio Times:

  • Saoirse-Monica Jackson of Derry Girls fame chats about the “bittersweet” end of the show, how she’d love to revisit her character and how the show helped revive a town with a troubled past
  • Steve Backshall on the forgiving nature of whales, how to tackle “conservation fatigue” and why he hopes to move into politics
  • Speaking to the Radio Times Podcast: Bear Grylls discusses the scary experience of going to Eton, the dark time following a parachuting accident that nearly led to paralysis and the importance of leaving ego behind

Chicken Run: Dawn of the Nugget arrives on Netflix on 15th December 2023, while the first film is available now. Sign up for Netflix from £4.99 a month. Netflix is also available on Sky Glass and Virgin Media Stream.

Check out more of our Film coverage or visit our TV Guide and Streaming Guide to see what's on tonight.


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