Thunderbirds return: Weta to produce new series for ITV

ITV order 26-episode series of Thunderbirds Are Go! from Weta Workshop in tribute to Gerry Anderson

The original 1965-1966 Thunderbirds ‘supermarionation’ puppet series

ITV have commissioned a 26-episode series based on Gerry Anderson’s much-loved ‘supermarionation’ sci-fi adventure Thunderbirds, in tribute to the creator, who died on 26 December 2012.

A mixture of CG animation and live action model sets, the show is being developed by New Zealand-based Pukeko Pictures in collaboration with Peter Jackson-endorsed effects studio Weta Workshop, the effects house behind The Hobbit and The Lord Of The Rings.

Denise O Donoghue, ITV Studios UK managing director, said, “Thunderbirds is a highly respected brand that continues to hold recognition around the world.

“This cult series is often credited as changing the history of animation and action-adventure, and we look forward to taking the show to another level while retaining the much-loved heritage that has endured over the past 50 years.”

Richard Taylor, co-owner of Pukeko Pictures and Weta Workshop, added, “It is thrilling to think we have the opportunity to work with ITV on this new series inspired by this most wonderful of British shows.

“I personally, together with the teams here at Pukeko Pictures and Weta Workshop, look forward to designing and creating an inspirational world that will engage the imagination of a whole new generation as it did for us nearly half a century ago.”

Pick up Thunderbirds – The Complete Collection on DVD priced £29.99 or on Blu-ray priced £55 from Amazon.co.uk.