roald dahl
British writer Roald Dahl (1916 - 1990), 11th December 1971 Ronald Dumont/Daily Express/Hulton Archive/Getty Images

Anyone interested in a cosy Saturday night in? Prepare to order a takeaway and put your feet up in time for a documentary that will delight Roald Dahl fans up and down the country.

BBC2's The Marvellous World of Roald Dahl explores the story and life of the celebrated children's author – who penned classics such as Matilda and The BFG – by using archived letters, writings and biographical material in his own inimitable voice.

Dahl – who was born in Wales to Norwegian parents – lived until he was 74-years-old and served as a fighter pilot in the Royal Air Force during the Second World War. He rose to prominence in the 1940s and became of the world's best-selling authors with works for both children and adults.

He was referred to as "one of the greatest storytellers for children of the 20<sup>th century" and his short stories for adults – including The Landlady – are renowned for their ominous undertones and macabre characters.

Viewers will also see Dahl's work as a spy and his encounters with Walt Disney and Theodore Roosevelt as numerous personal experiences which may have informed and shaped the fantastical tales full of magic and dark surprises such as Charlie and the Chocolate Factory.

The documentary includes contributions from Dahl's last wife Liccy, his daughter Lucy and biographer Donald Sturrock. His long-term collaborator and good friend, Quentin Blake, will provide new animated illustrations based on the events of Dahl's life. Voiced by actor Robert Lindsay, the programme is a rare insight into the darker side to the famous author's character.

Watch The Marvellous World of Roald Dahl at 8pm on 22 July on BBC2.