Netflix will create an original animated series of Roald Dahl stories including Charlie and the Chocolate Factory, Matilda, The BFG and The Twits.
The California-headquartered media company announced on Wednesday (27th November) that together with the Roald Dahl Story Company (formerly known as the Roald Dahl Literary Estate) it would be “extending the Roald Dahl universe of stories for global family audiences with an exclusive new slate of original animated event series” with Dahl’s widow, Felicity, describing it as “an exciting new chapter”. Production is set to start in 2019.
The media giant, which operates across 192 countries, said it intends to remain faithful to “the quintessential spirit and tone of Dahl while also building out an imaginative story universe that expands far beyond the pages of the books themselves”.
The titles due slated for adaptation include Charlie and the Chocolate Factory, Matilda, The BFG, The Twits, Charlie and the Great Glass Elevator, George’s Marvellous Medicine, Boy – Tales of Childhood, Going Solo, The Enormous Crocodile, The Giraffe and the Pelly and Me, Henry Sugar, Billy and the Minpins, The Magic Finger, Esio Trot, Dirty Beasts and Rhyme Stew (all currently published by Puffin in the UK).
“Roald Dahl stories have long inspired award-winning feature films and stage productions,” Netflix said in its announcement. “But now, for the first time, Netflix will bring together the highest quality creative, visual, and writing teams to extend the stories in this first-of-its-kind slate of premium animated event series and specials for audiences of all ages and for families to enjoy together.”
Felicity Dahl said: “Our mission, which is purposefully lofty, is for as many children as possible around the world to experience the unique magic and positive message of Roald Dahl’s stories. This partnership with Netflix marks a significant move toward making that possible and is an incredibly exciting new chapter for the Roald Dahl Story Company. Roald would, I know, be thrilled.”
Melissa Cobb, v.p. of kids and family content at Netflix, said: “We have great creative ambition to reimagine the journeys of so many treasured Dahl characters in fresh, contemporary ways with the highest quality animation and production values.”
“Netflix is known for innovative and high-quality storytelling,” added Gideon Simeloff, strategy director for The Roald Dahl Story Company. “There is no other place in the world that can deliver animated entertainment for the whole family at such quality and scale.”