Release Date, Cast, News, and Spoilers

Have you ever wanted to see Timothée Chalamet swim in a sea of chocolate and dance through the halls of a candy factory? Well, consider your wish granted. This winter, you’ll see the 27-year-old actor do all that (and more) in the movie musical, Wonka. The upcoming film, directed by Paul King, is the latest adaptation of Roald Dahl’s Charlie and the Chocolate Factory, starring Chalamet as Willy Wonka.

The novel follows an impoverished boy named Charlie, who wins a golden ticket to visit Willy Wonka’s chocolate factory, where he learns a valuable lesson about privilege and gratitude. Since its release in 1964, the book has been adapted into three movies. The first film, Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory, starred Gene Wilder as the wacky chocolatier. In 2005, Johnny Depp took on the role in the reboot, Charlie and the Chocolate Factory. Now, Chalamet will take the reins in Wonka, which was written as a prequel to the novel.

According to Chalamet, playing Willy Wonka is a “dream come true.” The actor spoke about his experience at Cinemacon, where guests were treated to a preview of the film. According to ComicBook, the footage—which is not yet available to the public—features Chalamet singing (!) the original song, “You’ve Never Had Chocolate Like This,” along with imagery of chocolate fountains, giraffes, and even Hugh Grant playing a frighteningly orange Ooompa Loompa. Will seeing Hugh Grant’s Oompa Loompa finally break me? Probably.

Those who weren’t present at Cinemacon joked about missing the preview online. One fan tweeted, “Useless people at Cinemacon leak something from Dune 2 and Wonka,” while another sarcastically wrote, “I’m so happy for those who got to see the Dune 2 and Wonka footage shown at Cinemacon”

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Unfortunately, the team behind Wonka is keeping that footage under lock and key. While we wait to see the mysterious trailer, here’s everything we know about Wonka.

What is Wonka About?

Wonka is a prequel that takes place before any children arrive at Willy Wonka’s chocolate factory. The story centers around Wonka’s plight to open the chocolate factory, while a dangerous chocolate cartel tries to thwart his plans. During the trailer, Chalamet’s character reportedly says, “Every good thing in this world started with a dream, so hold on to yours.”

In previous iterations of Charlie and the Chocolate Factory, Wonka’s character is portrayed as cynical or greedy. But in Wonka, the character has a sunnier disposition. “This Willy is full of joy and hope and desire to become the greatest chocolatier,” Chalamet said.

Who’s Starring in Wonka?

Aside from Chalamet, the cast includes, yes, Hugh Grant as an Oompa Loompa—and Sally Hawkins as Willy Wonka’s mother. The rest of the characters are still under wraps. However, Charlie, the young boy who’s appeared in every other adaptation, will not be present in Wonka. Given this is a prequel, we can expect to meet a new cast of delightfully strange characters.

When Does Wonka Come Out?

After a production delay, Wonka finally has a new release date. The movie premieres in theaters on December 15, 2023.

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Associate Staff Writer

Bria McNeal is a Manhattan based journalist who is patiently awaiting B5’s revival. When she’s not writing about all things entertainment, she can be found watching TV or trying to DIY something (likely, at the same time). Her work has appeared in NYLON, Refinery29, InStyle, and her personal newsletter, StirCrazy.  

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