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Subject: Snowman producer John Coates dies

Written By: Philip Eno on 09/18/12 at 12:24 pm

John Coates, the producer of the classic animation film The Snowman, has died of cancer. He was in his eighties.

Coates, recently finished work on a follow-up to the 1982 film to celebrate its 30th anniversary, died on Sunday at his home in Kent.

A spokeswoman for Lupus Films, the production company behind the sequel, said: "It's very sad news. He was very involved ."

The Snowman and the Snowdog will be screened on Channel 4 this Christmas.

The film is said to involve a new boy, a "snow dog" and such modern landmarks as the London Eye.

Producer Camilla Deakin said Coates had recently seen the trailer and the storyboard of the whole film and was "very pleased" with them.

Coates served in World War II as an army officer and became a film distributor in Asia before returning to England and beginning to produce animation.

He teamed up with The Snowman writer Raymond Briggs and persuaded Channel 4 to make it one of its first films.

It went on to become a classic repeated every year at Christmas and it was nominated for an Academy Award in 1983.

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