Nick Park screens his new movie in Preston

Photo Neil Cross
Wallace and Gromit creator Nick Park hosting a private screening of his new film 'Early Man' at Preston Odeon  for friends, family, and 80 people from the Sir Tom Finney Soccer Centre
Photo Neil Cross Wallace and Gromit creator Nick Park hosting a private screening of his new film 'Early Man' at Preston Odeon for friends, family, and 80 people from the Sir Tom Finney Soccer Centre

Four-time Oscar winner Nick Park returned home to Preston this afternoon to lay on a special screening of his new movie Early Man.

The animated prehistoric comedy, the largest production by his Aardman studio in more than 40 years, was shown to an invited audience of family and friends at the Odeon Cinema on Port Way.

Photo Neil Cross
Wallace and Gromit creator Nick Park hosting a private screening of his new film 'Early Man' at Preston Odeon  for friends, family, and 80 people from the Sir Tom Finney Soccer Centre

Photo Neil Cross Wallace and Gromit creator Nick Park hosting a private screening of his new film 'Early Man' at Preston Odeon for friends, family, and 80 people from the Sir Tom Finney Soccer Centre

Also invited were members of the Sir Tom Finney Soccer Centre in the city, including Sir Tom’s son Brian Finney.

Nick, who hails from Walmer Bridge, directed the film - the first time he has been solo director of a feature length movie.

“We held the movie’s premiere last weekend, but I decided to have a Northern premiere up here in Preston,” he told the Post. “It was a great oppportunity to get family and friends together to watch it.”

Nick first had the idea for Early Man back in 2010 and has been refining it ever since.

Eddie Redmayne and Maisie Williams with Nick Park during filming of Early Man

Eddie Redmayne and Maisie Williams with Nick Park during filming of Early Man

An all-star British cast, including Eddie Redmayne, Tom Hiddleston, Timothy Spall, Maisie Williams, Rob Brydon and Miriam Margolyes, voiced the characters.

Set at the dawn of time when prehistoric creatures roamed the earth, Early Man tells the story of courageous caveman Dug and his best friend Hognob as they unite their tribe against a mighty enemy Lord Nooth and his Bronze Age city to save their home.

They discover a game called football and Dug challenges the city’s team Real Bronzio to a crunch match.

Filming began in May 2016 and the film was released in cinemas across Britain yesterday.

“It’s been on the back burner for many years now,” confessed Nick. “The writing alone has taken more than three years.”