Sky Arts is airing a fascinating new documentary series this summer!
Coming soon, Wonderland will explore the remarkable fifty-year period during which an unforgettable collection of classic children’s literature was created in Britain.
The four-part series delves into the lives of the authors who wrote those stories – Arthur Ransome, Kenneth Grahame, A. A. Milne, J. M. Barrie, Rudyard Kipling, Erskine Childers, Frances Hodgson Burnett, Lewis Carroll, Beatrix Potter – revealing the pain and tragedy behind their words.
Wonderland combines biography, literary extracts, and quotations, together with excerpts from the many films made of the work of these authors. Their world is an extraordinary one, telling us much about the individuals concerned and the position of Britain itself in the transforming period of its history from 1880 until 1945.
Wonderland will premiere in the UK at 7pm on Thursday 18th August on Sky Arts.
Watch the trailer here:
The official synopsis reads: “An extraordinary range of writers turned to a form of writing where they created “Wonderlands”, “Neverlands” – places of happiness in which children were portrayed as living in a happy world, where sorrow and the difficulties and tragedies of adult life were simply removed.
“This stream of great writing included classic tales such as Swallows and Amazons, The Secret Garden, The Jungle Book, The Tales of Beatrix Potter, and Alice in Wonderland, but the authors of these magical stories had lives that consisted of great unhappiness, often using their creativity to overcome terrible adversities.
“For these writers, childhood was a time of beauty and enchantment far removed from the reality of their adult lives. Author of The Wind in the Willows, Kenneth Grahame was overwhelmed with grief when his son aged 19 committed suicide, Rudyard Kipling lost not only his much-loved daughter Josephine, but also his son John, who died in the First World War, and A. A. Milne was never forgiven by his son for turning him into Christopher Robin.”
We don’t yet have details for the US broadcast of Wonderland, but we’ll let you know as soon as we hear.