Wednesday, May 28, 2014

Did You Know ... Roald Dahl

I have always loved books by Roald Dahl, from Charlie and the Chocolate Factory to James and the Giant Peach. He wrote so many interesting books in his lifetime, it's amazing to me that he came up with so many great ideas. I thought it would be fun to see it I could come up with some little known facts about his life and his books. Turns out, he led a fascinating life. Here's what I discovered.

Did you know...

  • He was born in Wales in 1916? His parents were Norwegian.
  • Dahl grew to be six and a half feet tall?
  • The Cadbury chocolate company sent boxes of new chocolates to his school to be tested? Dahl dreamed of devising a new flavor that would impress Mr. Cadbury. The idea inspired Charlie and the Chocolate Factory.
  • He was a fighter pilot in World War II and shot down five enemy aircraft, making him a flying ace?
  • He was attache to the British ambassador to the U.S.? 
  • During this time Dahl provided intelligence to an organization called the British Security Coordination? This was a group that was working to combat the American isolationist movement. It's members included Ian Fleming and David Ogilvy.
  • In 1953 he married actress Patricia Neal?
  • In addition to his children's books, Dahl also wrote short stories for adults? These were usually darker stories of the macabre.
  • Tales of the Unexpected, a collection of his adult stories, was made into a TV series? 
  • Dahl wrote the screenplays for the film version of Chitty Chitty Bang Bang and You Only Live Twice?  Both were rewritten and finished by other screen writers. The Child Catcher in Chitty Chitty Bang Bang was his creation.
  • He died in 1990 at the age of 74?

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