New Zealand director Taika Waititi has teamed up with a bunch of Hollywood stars to present Roald Dahl storytime readings on YouTube and raise money for frontline workers fighting Covid-19.
James and the Giant Peach with Taika and Friends features the Academy Award-winning director and actors such as Meryl Streep, Chris and Liam Hemsworth, Mindy Kaling and Ryan Reynolds all reading parts of the story from their own homes.
Two of the 10 episodes are now live on YouTube. The first episode stars both Hemsworth brothers, Nick Kroll and Waititi.
“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,” says Waititi.
“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.”
The group aims to raise money for Partners In Health, a medical and social justice organisation fighting Covid-19 and supporting public health systems in some of the most vulnerable communities around the world.
The Roald Dahl Story Company said it has also committed to matching $1 million of donations, with other donors lined up for matching beyond that amount.
Waititi was recently announced as the writer, director and executive producer of two original Roald Dahl animated series for Netflix. He will be creating 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.