Lakeshore Records releases Robin Robin—Original Motion Picture Soundtrack digitally today, November 24 featuring music by The Bookshop Band. AKA Ben Please and Beth Porter, the duo’s sublimely evocative, lighthearted songs are integral to the wondrous stop-motion world created by the multi award-winning and independent British production company Aardman (Shaun the Sheep, Wallace and Gromit, Chicken Run). The film’s directors, Dan Ojari and Mikey Please also co-wrote the songs. Voiced by Richard E. Grant, Gillian Anderson, Adeel Akhtar and Bronte Carmichael, Robin Robin streams on Netflix November 24.
Robin Robin is the tale of a small bird with a very big heart. After a shaky nativity of her own – her unhatched egg falls out of the nest and into a rubbish dumpster – she comes out of her shell, in more ways than one, and is adopted by a loving family of burglar mice. More beak and feathers than fur, tail and ears, more cluck and klutz than tip-toe and stealth, she is nonetheless beloved by her adopted family, a Dad Mouse and four siblings.
As she grows up, though, her differences make her something of a liability, especially when the family take her on furtive food raids to the houses of the humans (pronounced ‘Who-mans’) in the dead of night.
Neither fully bird, nor fully mouse, Robin embarks on a food heist of her own to prove herself worthy of her family and also, hopefully, to bring them back a Christmas sandwich. Along the way, she encounters a curmudgeonly magpie who has a house full of glittery things that he’s stolen and, as it turns out, an unlikely heart of gold. He has set that heart on stealing the sparkling star from the top of a local who-man family’s Christmas tree. And who better to help him than the eternally optimistic Robin herself. The adventure brings them face-to-terrifying-face with a menacing, yet very cool Cat, who has a warm place for birds and mice alike: her tummy.
Can they survive? Can they bring home the sandwich and the star? And, most of all, can Robin discover, and learn to love, who she really is, delighting her family and earning her wings in the process?
Notes Ben: “I'd been collaborating on shorter animations with my brother for the last 16 years, so when Mikey and Dan asked us to write the music for Robin Robin it felt like the dream culmination of that journey. It was a rare opportunity to properly explore and develop a weave of character’s musical themes over a longer form than we'd done before, with the strength and enthusiasm of Aardman's amazing team carrying us the whole way.
I literally spent most of the last two years with Gillian whispering in my ear pretending to be an evil cat, so I count myself very lucky."
Added Dan Ojari & Mikey Please: “It was a huge pleasure to continue our long history of collaboration with the Bookshop Band on Robin Robin, our most ambitious project to date. Beth and Ben are tremendous talents and we feel very lucky to have been able to work with them from the very early stages of development, so that story and music could feed back and forth and enrich each other. Their warm earthy melodies and folk-inspired instrumentation, with the orchestral backing, was the perfect fit for the world of Robin Robin. We’re excited about the soundtrack release so that listeners can close their eyes and be taken on a fabulous audio journey through that landscape, that is as grand and grounded as the film itself.”
ABOUT THE BOOKSHOP BAND
The Bookshop Band are the musical offspring of an artistic love-affair between two songwriters, Ben Please and Beth Porter, and an independent bookshop in the UK, Mr B’s Emporium of Reading Delights. The band's songs are the musical outpouring of their response to books curated by the bookshop. The songs are written on the day Ben & Beth are due to perform them for the first time in front of the author and a small gathered audience upstairs at the bookshop. They would claim that this is part of their artistic process; running with thier first ideas, casting aside procrastination to harness the adrenaline of pressure to let the creative momentum take grip and produce something new. But really, they are just very slow readers and generally do not finish the book till the morning of the event.
One year after they started in 2010, they had recorded four albums and decided to see if other bookshops might like to host a concert of book-inspired songs, and so began many years of playing in bookshops across the UK and Ireland. The next few years saw many more collaborations with some of the biggest names in literature and in 2017 they released a further nine albums, had a baby and moved to Scotland's Book Town, Wigtown. In 2019 they completed a debut tour of American bookshops, but they return tour to launch their new live album was curtailed by the pandemic. Ben and Beth have just resumed touring and are currently working on three new albums including one inspired by Scottish children's literature.
Aardman, based in Bristol (UK) and co-founded in 1976 by Peter Lord and David Sproxton, is an independent and multi-Academy Award® and BAFTA® award winning studio. It produces feature films, series, advertising, games and interactive entertainment – current animated productions include; brand new 2021 holiday specials Robin Robin and Shaun the Sheep: The Flight Before Christmas, CGI series Lloyd of the Flies, a new stop motion series for pre-schoolers The Very Small Creatures and a Chicken Run movie sequel.
Its productions are global in appeal, novel, entertaining, brilliantly characterised and full of charm reflecting the unique talent, energy and personal commitment of the Aardman team. The studio’s work – which includes the creation of much-loved characters including Wallace & Gromit, Shaun the Sheep, Timmy Time and Morph – is often imitated, and yet the company continues to lead the field producing a rare brand of visually stunning content for cinema, broadcasters, digital platforms and live experiences around the world. Recent celebrated projects include the ‘visually astonishing’ (Guardian), BAFTA® nominated console game, 11-11: Memories Retold, the four-times Gold Cannes Lions-winning StorySign app, AR experience Wallace & Gromit: The Big Fix up - and innovative attractions for both the domestic and international market, including a 4D theatre attraction at Efteling in the Netherlands.
The studio runs the Aardman Academy which has a commitment to nurturing talent by delivering excellence in film and animation training and mentoring. The Aardman Academy offers a variety of courses from intensive one-day workshops teaching production skills and storyboarding, to comprehensive twelve-week courses for professionals in craft based subjects from model making to animation.
In November 2018 it became an Employee Owned Organisation, to ensure Aardman remains independent and to secure the creative legacy and culture of the company for many decades to come. www.aardman.com
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Jeremy [Six Strings]