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Key & Peele team up with Coraline director for new stop-motion feature

Keegan-Michael Key and Jordan Peele are teaming up with famed animation director Henry Selick (The Nightmare Before Christmas, and Coraline) to create a new stop motion comedy.

According to Variety, Selick says the film called Wendell and Wild will be, “a comedy about two scheming demon brothers who must face their arch-nemesis, the demon-dusting nun Sister Helly, and her two acolytes, the goth teens Kat and Raoul.”

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The film does not yet have a studio involved, but given the Hollywood pedigrees of all three — and especially the award-winning history of Selick — it would be surprising if they didn’t have at least a few bites.

The comedy will be a bit of a departure for the director, who shared with Variety his penchant for darker storylines, and his impression that they are selling better these days.  “We are who we are,” he said, “[It] used to be what I liked was a small percentage of what was being made. These days, everything is dark, darker, darkest.”

Wendell and Wild will be co-written by Peele and Selick, with Key stepping in to voice one of the main characters when the time comes. The comedy duo have plenty of experience with animated features, doing voice work for Bobs Burgers, The Lego Movie, and Rick and Morty. They are also currently creating an animated series based on Vandaveon and Mike, two characters from their series of Comedy Central shorts called Critiquer’s Corner.

Selick himself has other projects in the works, including a planned collaboration with Coraline writer Neil Gaiman, as well as intentions to direct an on-screen adaptation of Adam Gidwitz’s book A Tale Dark and Grimm.

Given how busy the three are, the project will likely be slower-moving than other animated releases, at best hitting screens in the next few years. But, as fans of the director can attest, whenever an exciting creative team of this stature comes together, the results are usually worth the wait.