EXCLUSIVE: A modern TV series remake of The Wombles is in the works with Ipcress File producer Altitude Television.
The TV arm of Altitude Media Group is forging a fresh version of the beloved animated British family series about a secretive group of furry creatures who live beneath Wimbledon Common, which is being co-produced with The Wombles production house and written by How to Train Your Dragon’s Will Davies.
Based on Elisabeth Beresford’s children’s novels, the stop-motion show ran in the mid-70s on the BBC featuring the voice of Bernard Cribbins, was remade in the mid-90s for ITV and remastered earlier this year as it turned 50. Altitude didn’t elaborate further on how it will be modernizing the classic.
Meanwhile, Altitude, which produced ITV’s big-budget remake of Michael Caine pic Ipcress File, has hired Chris Clark as MD and Chief Creative Officer, along with Development Executive Gabby Kardar. Former Working Title exec Clark’s credits include The Guard, Johnny English Reborn and Man Vs. Bee, the latter of which Kardar also worked on.
With Sylvester Stallone’s Balboa Productions, the team is co-developing an adaptation of astronaut Chris Hadfield’s cold war novel The Apollo Murders. Altitude is also developing an English-language version of Movistar+’s Spanish thriller Riot Squad.
Altitude Chairman and Co-CEO Will Clarke said the hires “represent a significant stage in the company’s growth.” “Chris’ track record speaks for itself and we know that broadcasters globally are hungry for exciting, high quality and compelling series and we can’t wait to work with established and emerging creative talents to help bring those ideas to life,” he added.
Clark said: “I’m thrilled to be joining Altitude Television and have the opportunity to work with such a talented team. I’m very excited about the projects we’re launching, and the rich and varied slate we’re building together.”
The company is introducing the projects at Mipcom Cannes.