Nicole Kidman is in talks tostar in Flushed Away, the next title to roll out of the multi-pictureanimation deal between the UK's Aardman Animations and DreamWorks SKG.

Kidman is likely to play astreet-smart sewer rat named Rita, with Hugh Jackman voicing Roddy, a posh ratwho is swept out of his penthouse and into the sewer. There, he meets Rita, whohelps him find his way home.

Rounding out the cast arereportedly The Lord Of The Rings duo Ian McKellen and Andy Serkis.McKellen is to voice an evil frog, while Serkis plays his henchman Spike.

Flushed Away is expected to be Aardman's first CGI picture. TheBristol-based company pioneered claymation with TV work and then 2000 feature ChickenRun and the long-awaited Wallace & Gromit film, which was inproduction over the summer.

Neither Dreamworks norAardman would comment, but their plan has been to start production on FlushedAway hard on the heels of Wallace & Gromit. Flushed Awaywill reportedly be released in 2006, the year after Wallace & Gromit.

Henry Anderson, David Bowersand Sam Fell are directing Flushed Away from a script by Dick Clementand Ian LaFrenais.