Frequently motion-captured actor and simian-portrayal expert Andy Serkis is getting his spandex-covered body behind the camera again for a new feature adaptation of Animal Farm.
Serkis, who recently honed his directing skills serving as second-unit director on The Hobbit films, is reportedly to direct a new take on the George Orwell novel that will take advantage of modern motion-capture technology, thus allowing Napoleon to finally be portrayed by a man crawling around on all fours. And as you may have guessed, that man moving around like a baby will in all likelihood be Serkis, who is "expected to perform in the film" even if "nothing is set in stone yet."
The actor-director is producing the film with The Imaginarium, the motion-capture studio he and producer Jonathan Cavendish set up last year as a new outlet for efficiently converting human kinetics into CGI animals. Serkis says his Animal Farm will examine the book in "a new light," aiming at the emotional core and a family audience while easing up on the overtness of the story's political implications. The knowledge that every movement he's made for the last decade has been tracked and recorded has no doubt given him his fill of heavy-handed political allegory.