10 January 2022

Wes Anderson is making a new Roald Dahl adaptation starring Ralph Fiennes, Dev Patel and Benedict Cumberbatch

The director is said to be calling on some of the biggest acting names around for his next endeavour into the Roald Dahl estate.

The world of Roald Dahl could be getting a Wes Anderson makeover… again. The director is reported to be on board of an upcoming production of Dahl’s collection of short stories: The Wonderful Story of Henry Sugar

Dev Patel, Ralph Fiennes and Benedict Cumberbatch are all rumoured to be joining the cast, with the Sherlock Holmes star slipping into the shoes of Henry Sugar. The collection of stories are often thought to be aimed at slightly older audiences than, say, Anderson’s last Roald Dahl production, Fantastic Mr. Fox. Two of the stories in the collection give an insight into Dahl’s own life; his road to becoming a writer, and his time as a fighter pilot during the Second World War. There’s even a darker tale of two boys mutilating a swan and bullying another boy by sticking them onto his body, and then forcing him to try and fly off of a tree…

Back in September last year, Netflix acquired the Roald Dahl story catalogue with the intention of building a whole universe around the stories we loved growing up. And it feels like productions of the author’s work are inescapable at the moment, but in a good way.

In 2023, we’re being blessed with Timotheé Chalamet as Willy Wonka in what looks like some watered down villain origin story of what pushed the character to start his chocolate factory. And we can expect lots more. Netflix has said that there will be an extensive partnership with the author’s estate, meaning reworks of stories like The BFG and Matilda

The mega deal with the streaming site and announcements of future productions comes almost a year after the author’s family apologised in 2020 for Dahl’s blatantly anti-semitic remarks that he made in interviews in 1983 and 1990, when he said, for example, that Jewish financiers dominated the U.S. government. 

Right now, it’s unclear if Anderson is starting to take both quantity and quality into account, seeing as his aesthetically stunning productions have always felt few and far between, and when one does come along, it’s cherished for years. However, it was only a few months ago that we saw Chalamet in his pencil ‘tash in The French Dispatch, and it seems we’re already in for another glimpse into Anderson’s beautiful mind again…

  • Writer Ry Gavin
  • Photography Rankin

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