Coca-Cola adverts and hand-knitted jumpers aside, there are few things as Christmassy as The Snowman. Which is why it saddens us deeply to report that John Coates, the man who produced the iconic film has passed away.
The film-maker – who was in his 80s – had been battling cancer according to The Guardian and was working on a new version of the classic to celebrate its 30th anniversary.
He had been working with animators in London, until he became too ill to travel in from Kent. Channel 4 have confirmed that his new edition will appear in their schedules this December.
Coates worked with original animator Raymond Briggs and persuaded C4 to take the project on back in 1981.
The Snowman co-producer Camilla Deakin of Lupus Film said that he had seen the finished version of the new edition.
“He was happy to see it, comfortable and very, very happy with it,” she said.
Speaking last year about the project, he said: “After 30 years, it’s silly – why not have another one? We are hoping to repeat the success. We could fall flat on our faces. But it’s a lovely story.”
Watch the iconic song ‘Walking In The Air’ from the film, performed by
Aled Jones Peter Auty* below..