Main content
This programme is not currently available on BBC iPlayer

The Marvellous World of Roald Dahl

The story of Roald Dahl's greatest adventures, and how his real-life escapades find expression in his most famous books.

Fighter pilot, inventor, spy - the life of Roald Dahl is often stranger than fiction. From crashing his plane over Africa to hobnobbing in Hollywood, and his remarkable encounters with everyone from Walt Disney to President Roosevelt - this is the story of his greatest adventures, and how his real-life escapades find expression in his most famous books, from Charlie and the Chocolate Factory to Matilda.

Through a vast collection of his letters, writings and archive, the story is told largely in his own words, with contributions from his last wife Liccy, daughter Lucy and biographer Donald Sturrock. Long-term collaborator and illustrator Quentin Blake also creates exclusive new drawings for the film which are specially animated to bring Dahl's marvellous world to life.

59 minutes

Last on

Sun 24 Mar 2019 19:00

Music Played

Timings (where shown) are from the start of the programme in hours and minutes

  • 00:37

    John Barry

    You Only Live Twice

  • 00:38

    John Barry

    Main Theme/Capsule In Space

    Orchestra: City of Prague Philharmonic Orchestra.
  • 00:39

    Irving Berlin

    Isn't This A Lovely Day (To Be Caught In The Rain) (feat. Fred Astaire)

  • 00:57

    Ralph Vaughan Williams

    The Lark Ascending

    Performer: Nicola Benedetti. Orchestra: London Philharmonic Orchestra. Conductor: Andrew Litton.

Credits

Role Contributor
Producer Andrew Thompson
Director Andrew Thompson
Executive Producer Pauline Law

Broadcasts

Featured in...

Behind the scenes: Quentin Blake's revelations of Roald

Behind the scenes: Quentin Blake's revelations of Roald

Producer/Director, Andrew Thompson shares his experience of meeting Quentin Blake.

Awesome Authors

Awesome Authors

A celebration of children's literature, centred on Roald Dahl's centenary.

Quentin Blake on working with a big friendly giant

Quentin Blake on working with a big friendly giant

At his studio Sir Quentin gives a deeply personal insight into working with Dahl.

Roald and Sofie

Roald and Sofie

What does Dahl's correspondence with his mother Sofie tell us about his writing?