Magic Light Pictures, the production team behind the Stickman and Gruffalo animations, is adapting a new Julia Donaldson and Axel Scheffler picture book, The Highway Rat, for TV.
The animated version will air on BBC One around Christmas 2017, produced by Michael Rose and Martin Pope of Magic Light Pictures and directed by Jeroen Jaspaert. The animation will be provided by the South African company Triggerfish.
The Highway Rat, published by Scholastic in 2012, is about a greedy rat who tyrannises other animals by stealing their food. However, he has a sweet tooth and his cravings for cakes and sugar eventually lead to his downfall.
Magic Light Pictures acquired the rights to produce a film based on the book from Julia Donaldson (represented by Caroline Sheldon Literary Agency), Axel Scheffler and Scholastic. BBC acquired the broadcast rights from Magic Light Pictures.
Michael Rose, co-founder of Magic Light Pictures, said: “We’re delighted to be in production with our next Donaldson/Scheffler title for BBC One. Julia and Axel have given us another brilliant story to work from – a swashbuckling tale of bandits and biscuits for all the family to enjoy.”