Roald Dahl Teams Up With Taika Waititi To Present James And The Giant Peach, With Taika And Friends
MERYL STREEP, RYAN REYNOLDS, CATE BLANCHETT, CARA DELEVINGNE, CHRIS AND LIAM HEMSWORTH, BENEDICT CUMBERBATCH, LUPITA NYONG’ AND DOZENS OF OTHER STARS JOIN TAIKA WAITITI FOR FUNDRAISING STORY-TELLING SERIES
Taika Waititi uses incredible story-telling skills to recreate beloved classic James and The Giant Peach, from start to finish, in 10 instalments – for children and families currently in lockdown all over the world
The collaboration between Roald Dahl Story Company, Taika Waititi and the star-studded lineup of guests will raise money for Partners In Health, a global health nonprofit who are on the front line of the fight against COVID-19 in the most vulnerable parts of the world, with the Roald Dahl Story Company committed to donation matching of $1 Million
The first two episodes are available to view NOW exclusively on Roald Dahl YouTube channel
Episode one features Chris and Liam Hemsworth performing together for the first time, alongside Nick Kroll. The second episode boasts performances from Meryl Streep and Benedict Cumberbatch
The remaining instalments will be released on the Roald Dahl YouTube channel every Monday, Wednesday and Friday at 10am PST / 1pm EST / 6pm UK / Friday at 3am AEST
The Roald Dahl Story Company has brought together Academy Award-winning filmmaker, Taika Waititi (Thor: Ragnarok, The Mandalorian, Jojo Rabbit) and a host of global stars including Ryan Reynolds, Cate Blanchett, Mindy Kaling, Lupita Nyong'o, Sarah Paulson and Cara Delevingne to retell the beloved children’s novel James and the Giant Peach in full, across 10 episodes exclusively on the Roald Dahl YouTube channel .
The first two episodes of ‘JAMES AND THE GIANT PEACH, WITH TAIKA AND FRIENDS’ are available globally NOW and features award-winning talent including Meryl Streep, Benedict Cumberbatch, Nick Kroll, and brothers Chris and Liam Hemsworth reading portions of the book from their homes. New episodes will be published every Monday, Wednesday, Friday, with viewers able to expect appearances from a whole host of collaborators. The series promises many exciting and unexpected combinations, the biggest names in film, television, fashion and music coming together to perform each section of the tale.
The line-up of readers has over 40 Emmys, Grammys, Oscars and Tony award wins between them.
Among other surprise readers, the following stars will all read along with Taika over the course of 10 episodes: Utkarsh Ambudkar, Cate Blanchett, Jamie Cullum, Benedict Cumberbatch, Roman Griffin Davis, Cara Delevingne, Cynthia Erivo, Beanie Feldstein, Josh Gad, Chris Hemsworth, Liam Hemsworth, Mindy Kaling, Nick Kroll, Kumail Nanjiani, Lupita Nyong'o, Sarah Paulson, Billy Porter, Gordon Ramsay, Eddie Redmayne, Ryan Reynolds, Ben Schwartz, Meryl Streep, Tessa Thompson, Olivia Wilde, Ruth Wilson and Archie Yates.
The collaboration between the Roald Dahl Story Company, Waititi and his illustrious line up of friends aims to raise money for Partners In Health, a medical and social justice organization fighting COVID-19 and supporting public health systems in some of the most vulnerable communities around the world.
The Roald Dahl Story Company has committed to matching $1 Million of donations, with other donors lined up for matching beyond this milestone. People can donate to Partners In Health by visiting www.pih.org
The campaign forms part of a long-term charitable commitment for the Roald Dahl Story Company who recently donated $1.3 million to Partners In Health for maternal health in Sierra Leone. Overall, The Roald Dahl Story Company and Dahl Family have given over $12 million to date to charitable causes.
The Roald Dahl Story Company will also be supporting their other core charity partners at this challenging time – including Roald Dahl’s Marvellous Children’s Charity in the UK, who provide specialist nurses to seriously ill children and whose important work for the UK’s National Health Service requires support now more than ever.
Waititi was recently announced as the writer, director and executive producer of two original Roald Dahl animated series for Netflix as part of an extended raft of animated Roald Dahl TV. Waititi will develop an original series based on the world and characters of Charlie and the Chocolate Factory and develop an original show centred on the Oompa-Loompas.
Filmmaker and Host of ‘JAMES AND THE GIANT PEACH, WITH TAIKA AND FRIENDS’, Taika Waititi said: “Being an adult child myself and having read James and the Giant Peach to my girls multiple times, I’m excited to be able to partner with my friends, the Dahl team and Partners In Health and re-tell this story to help those most in need right now. This wacky, wonderful tale is about resilience in children, triumph over adversity and dealing with a sense of isolation which couldn't been more relevant today.”
Luke Kelly, Managing Director of The Roald Dahl Story Company said: “ Roald Dahl’s stories are about the power and importance of kindness – and as a business we believe in enacting that ethos. That’s why we support the critical work of charities such as Partners In Health who are working on the front line in the fight against Covid-19.
“We are so delighted to be able to support this re-telling of James and the Giant Peach and not only bring a moment of joy and escapism to children and families at this very tough time – but also to raise vital funds for Partners in Health
“We’re incredibly grateful and excited to have Taika and so many incredible stars taking part. We can’t wait for people to see what we’ve got in store – it’s going to be absolutely GIGANTIC fun” .
Ophelia Dahl, Roald Dahl’s daughter and Founder of Partners In Health, said: “My dad instilled in us as kids the notion that imagination will spark a chain reaction of possibilities -- we can dream endlessly about ideas and make them real. This early training meant it was not such a leap to envision Partners in Health with my friends. Roald was one of our earliest and most enthusiastic supporters and never let me leave for Haiti without stuffing a massive wad of cash in my hand to put towards the next project. You can see from his stories that he always supported the most vulnerable and those excluded from opportunity. PIH was the perfect match.
We know from experience that the impact of this virus will be felt most by vulnerable communities around the world. But with more than three decades experience in community-based health care, including responses to epidemics and outbreaks such as Ebola, cholera and tuberculosis; we know how to fight this. “And JAMES AND THE GIANT PEACH, WITH TAIKA AND FRIENDS will raise critical funds that will allow Partners In Health to invest in local health systems that deliver high-quality, dignified care to fight this disease. We're so grateful to Taika Waititi and the Roald Dahl Story Company for pulling together this extraordinary initiative and amazing array of talent. It will undoubtedly help in the fight against the long-standing health inequities we see in many parts of the world. Thank you for your generosity.”
About the Roald Dahl Story Company
The Roald Dahl Story Company protects and grows the cultural value of The Roald Dahl brand with its unique breadth of characters, stories and worlds. It has established a global reputation as a brand and entertainment business within the worlds of publishing, movies, products and events – and has earned a host of industry accolades along the way, including a total of 52 nominations for Oscars, Golden Globes, Baftas, Oliviers and Tonys. With 300 million books sold and 1 new book sold every 2.5 seconds – The Roald Dahl brand continues to grow in popularity globally, attracting new audiences with innovative new developments in book, entertainment and beyond.
The Roald Dahl Story Company is committed to sharing the positive message at the heart of all Roald Dahl stories- that the world can be tough, but with a combination of imagination, determination and heart, - everyone, no matter how small and powerless they feel, possesses the strength to change their own circumstances for the better. A belief in the growing relevance of this message and its positive impact is at the heart of everything RDSC does. The Roald Dahl Story Company Ltd has a long term commitment to charitable giving, working with charities such as Partners In Health and Roald Dahl’s marvellous Children’s Charity who provide medical support to those who need it most. Over £10 million has been given by the Roald Dahl business and Family to date.
About Partners In Health’s response to COVID-19
Partners In Health (PIH) is uniquely positioned to respond to COVID-19, building on deep experience in treating infectious disease outbreaks and responding to emergency situations around the world. For over 30 years, PIH has successfully confronted outbreaks, from HIV to drug-resistant tuberculosis, Ebola and cholera. In early April, PIH announced that it is bringing its experience to Massachusetts, as well, launching an innovative partnership with government to implement a massive contact tracing program across Massachusetts. That partnership already has drawn significant interest from other U.S. states.
COVID-19 will disproportionately affect the most vulnerable as it continues to spread globally. Immediate action is needed to contain the pandemic and ensure that care is available for everyone—regardless of where they live.
More information on James and the Giant Peach
With 300 million books sold and one book sold every 2.5 seconds, Roald Dahl stories continue to grow in popularity. James and the Giant Peach is one of Roald Dahl’s most beloved titles with over 28 million books sold to date globally. Published over 50 years ago – the stories themes of resilience, perseverance and the enduring power of friendship feel more relevant now than ever.