Call Me By Your Name and Dune star Timothee Chalamet is set to play Willy Wonka, the legendary chocolatier straight from the imagination of Roald Dahl. The character will appear in a prequel being spun up at Warner Bros.
Titled Wonka, this will inevitably feature a young Wonka on his worldwide adventures before he became the proprietor of the chocolate factory. No doubt this will feature his first encounter with the Oompa-Loompa’s before he offered them a new home in his factory. Charlie Bucket won’t feature as a character. It will be a musical and will be Chalamet’s first time in the genre.
The character was last seen in Tim Burton’s 2005 adaption of Charlie And The Chocolate Factory which somehow managed to miss the mark, featuring a bizarre performance as Johnny Depp appeared to try and channel Michael Jackson, Prior to that was Gene Wilder’s iconic and much-loved performance in the all-time great 1971 version, which author Dahl famously hated!
Chalamet seems determined to push himself, from demanding and potentially controversial fare like Call Me By Your Name, to the iconic role of Paul Atreides in Dune, a role fraught with the danger of fan disapproval for the tiniest misstep. Then straight across genre to musicals. You have to respect that.
Normally this would be dismissed out of hand, but it is being produced by David Heyman, whose Heyday Films is behind Harry Potter and Paddington. The director of Paddington, Paul King, will be in the big chair. So it has some real talent for the material involved. We all know who loves a chocolatier…