'The Witches' debuts first trailer as Roald Dahl movie announced for US streaming debut

Watch: The first trailer for The Witches

The new adaptation of Roald Dahl’s The Witches is heading straight to the HBO Max streaming platform in the USA — and there’s a trailer giving us our first look at the movie.

Robert Zemeckis has directed the film, which adapts Roald Dahl’s 1983 novel about a young boy and his witch hunter grandmother trying to take down a secret coven of man-hating sorceresses.

It was previously adapted by filmmaker Nicolas Roeg in 1990, with Anjelica Huston as the terrifying Grand High Witch.

Read more: Stabbing on set of The Witches

Warner Bros announced today that the new movie will debut on HBO Max from 22 October, with a tweet from the studio’s UK account simply stating the film is “coming soon”.

Anne Hathaway takes on the role played by Huston, with Octavia Spencer as the grandmother and Stanley Tucci also in the cast, as well as voiceover by Chris Rock, who is heard in the trailer

Hathaway told People that her take on the Grand High Witch is “such a weirdo” and that she enjoyed the “over the top” performance.

She added: “Everyone had to work together to be on the same page so it felt big and entertaining but never too much."

Read more: Del Toro done with comic book characters

As well as directing the movie, Zemeckis also co-wrote the script with Kenya Barris and Guillermo del Toro. Del Toro is also listed among the producers, alongside Mexican contemporary Alfonso Cuarón.

A title treatment for the movie was revealed in March, suggesting an October 2020 cinema release, but news has been quiet since then with the coronavirus pandemic throwing release plans up in the air.

(Warner Bros.)
(Warner Bros.)

The Witches is one of several Roald Dahl projects on the way from Hollywood, with Paddington director Paul King involved in a new movie based around Willy Wonka.

Read more: Paul King steps away from Paddington 3

Netflix, meanwhile, has made a deal with the Dahl estate to produce several works, including a pair of animated series from Taika Waititi based on Charlie and the Chocolate Factory.

The Witches is due to arrive on HBO Max on 22 October, with no UK release date announced.

Watch: News breaks of stabbing on set of The Witches