Netflix announced today that the streaming service has acquired the iconic Roald Dahl Story Company (RDSC). The two companies are joining forces to bring some of the world’s most loved stories to current and future fans in creative new ways.
This acquisition builds on the partnership the companies started three years ago to create a slate of animated TV series. Completion of the transaction is subject to regulatory approvals and other customary closing conditions.
In addition, Netflix is working with Sony and Working Title on an adaptation of Matilda The Musical.
The announcement was made by Ted Sarandos, Co-CEO and Chief Content Officer of Netflix, and Luke Kelly, Managing Director, RDSC and Roald Dahl’s grandson.
They said: “These projects opened our eyes to a much more ambitious venture – the creation of a unique universe across animated and live action films and TV, publishing, games, immersive experiences, live theatre, consumer products and more.”
They added: “Roald Dahl’s books have been translated into 63 languages and sold more than 300 million copies worldwide, with characters like Matilda, The BFG, Fantastic Mr. Fox, Willy Wonka and The Twits delighting generations of children and adults. These stories and their messages of the power and possibility of young people have never felt more pertinent.
“As we bring these timeless tales to more audiences in new formats, we’re committed to maintaining their unique spirit and their universal themes of surprise and kindness, while also sprinkling some fresh magic into the mix.
“We want to say a huge thank you to all the people who have contributed to this great story so far. Looking ahead, we’re excited to continue the close working relationships established by RDSC with existing rights holders, publishing, theatre and entertainment partners, and many others to protect and grow the great legacy of these beloved stories.
“There is a moment in James and the Giant Peach when the Ladybird says: ‘We are now about to visit the most marvellous places and see the most wonderful things!’. The Centipede replies, ‘there is no knowing what we shall see!’.
“Netflix and The Roald Dahl Story Company share a deep love of storytelling and a growing, global fan base. Together, we have an extraordinary opportunity to write multiple new chapters of these beloved stories, delighting children and adults around the world for generations to come.”
The Roald Dahl Story Company protects and grows the cultural value of The Roald Dahl stories with its unique breadth of characters and worlds. With 300 million books sold and 1 new book sold every 2.6 seconds, Roald Dahl stories continue 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 messages at the heart of all Roald Dahl stories – messages of the strength and possibility of young people and of the power of kindness. A belief in the growing relevance of this message and its positive impact is at the heart of everything RDSC does.
Ten percent of the operating profit of The Roald Dahl Story Company Ltd goes to charities such as Partners in Health and Roald Dahl’s Marvellous Children’s Charity who provide medical support to those who need it most.