Meryl Streep and Chris Hemsworth join Taika Waititi in new series reading classic Roald Dahl novel

In the age of coronavirus, celebrities have found it hard to find their place (we’re still cringing about the Gal Gadot-led sing-a-long ).

But it seems reading classic novels is the sweet spot. Earlier this month it was announced Daniel Radcliffe and Eddie Redmayne would read chapters of the first Harry Potter book , and now Oscar-winning film director Taika Waititi has gathered an all-star cast to read chapters of Roald Dalhl’s classic book, James and the Giant Peach.

Chris and Liam Hemsworth, Meryl Streep, Ryan Reynolds and Benedict Cumberbatch are among a host of names to sign on, with all funds raised going towards the fight against coronavirus.

To create the videos, Waititi has teamed up with the Roald Dahl Story Company to recreate the book in 10 instalments. Waititi will be narrating the story but along the way he will be joined by familiar faces – like Cate Blanchett, Mindy Kaling and Lupita Nyong’o.

In the first episode, the Hemsworth brothers play Aunt Sponge and Aunt Spiker with Streep and Cumberbatch stepping into these roles in the second episode.

The first two instalments are already available on YouTube and the rest will be released every Monday, Wednesday and Friday.

The stars are joining together to raise money for Partners in Health, a global health non-profit fighting COVID-19 in the most vulnerable areas across the globe. The Roald Dahl Story Company has committed to matching donations up to $1 million (£823,000).

Waititi says: “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 PIH and retell this story to help those most in need right now.”

You can watch the first episode above and find the YouTube channel here.

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