Wes Anderson’s Roald Dahl Movie Adds Rupert Friend, Richard Ayoade

There has been plenty of recent casting news around Wes Anderson’s adaptation of Roald Dahl’s The Wonderful Story of Henry Sugar and Six More for Netflix. Such names as Benedict Cumberbatch, Ralph Fiennes, Dev Patel, and Ben Kingsley have all recently joined the project and now two new names are joining them with Rupert Friend (Homeland), and Richard Ayoade (The IT Crowd), according to Deadline.

The Wonderful Story of Henry Sugar and Six More was a collection of seven short stories, which are a mix of fiction and nonfiction, written by Dahl and published in 1977. The short story about the titular Henry Sugar (Cumberbatch), centers on a man who learns how to see through objects and predict the future. This leads to Henry Sugar evading Mafia henchmen, working with a Hollywood makeup artist, and setting up orphanages around the world.

Anderson, who has written the script from Dahl’s source material and will also be directing, has been said to have organized the film into three chapters. Cumberbatch, who will be playing several roles, will be the thread that connects each chapter. Sources are saying that Friend will be playing the lead in one of the film’s three chapters. It is currently unknown what roles Patel, Fiennes, and Kingsley will be playing.

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This film is not Anderson’s first time adapting a work by Dahl, has he had previously made the 2009 stop motion animated film, The Fantastic Mr. Fox. This new film will be the third collaboration between Friend and Anderson, as the two previously worked together on Anderson’s most recent film The French Dispatch and his upcoming film Asteroid City.

Friend is likely best known for his starring role on Homeland, for which he was nominated for an Emmy. He also has a supporting role as Stalin’s son in Armando Iannucci’s The Death of Stalin. Soon he will be seen in the Star Wars Disney+ series Obi-Wan Kenobi, in a currently unknown role. This will be Ayoade's first appearance in a film by Anderson, but last year, Ayoade appeared in The Souvenir Part II, and worked with Cumberbatch in The Electrical Life of Louis Wain.

This adaptation of The Wonderful Story of Henry Sugar and Six More comes after Netflix acquired the exclusive adaptation rights to the entire Dahl catalog back in September of last year. Since the acquisition, the streaming service has been said to be developing a "unique universe" of shows and films based on some of Dahl’s most popular works, including a series from Taika Waititi and Phil Johnston that will take place in the world of Charlie and the Chocolate Factory and an adaptation of Matilda The Musical.

No official release date has been announced for The Wonderful Story of Henry Sugar and Six More.

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Aidan King is a graduate of Fitchburg State University and loves writing and talking about both movies and tv. In his spare time, Aidan participates in an Improv comedy group.

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