The UK's Ealing Studios has teamed with Ralph Kamp's newly-launched sales outfit Odyssey Entertainment to produce $40m CG animation film Valiant.

John Williams, the US producer of Shrek and Jackie Chan film The Tuxedo, is producing with Barnaby Thompson, co-head of Fragile Films, one of the owners of Ealing.

The film, which will involve building an animation facility at Ealing, tells the story of a lowly wood pigeon who aspires to the prestigious position of a messenger homing pigeon in the Royal Air Force in WW2. Rob Letterman is directing from a script by George Webster.

The film re-unites Thompson and Kamp after they collaborated on Spice World: The Movie, An Ideal Husband and Kevin & Perry when Kamp was head of Icon Entertainment International.

"Production is scheduled to start early summer," said Kamp. "It's going to be a two year production, so we are looking at summer 2004 for delivery."