Before The Factory: Everything We Know About ‘Wonka’

Before the hunt for the golden ticket, and subsequent search for a new heir to the famous chocolate factory, there was just Willy Wonka. In the upcoming Warner Bros. film, audiences learn how he came to be the iconic chocolatier within the Roald Dahl novels in the world of “Charlie and the Chocolate Factory.”

Warner Bros. entertainment alluded to its plans of keeping the story alive back in 2016 when the company purchased the rights to the character. This year, more has been revealed about their intentions with “Wonka.” The film is said to be a prequel to the already established film adaptations of “Charlie and the Chocolate Factory” that will instead mainly focus on Willy Wonka. 

“It’s not a remake,” says David Heyman, a producer on the film, in an interview with Slashfilm. “They’ve done two films, quite different. But it’s possibly an origin story. We’re just in the early stages of it, working with a writer called Simon Rich, which is wonderful.” 

Though in its earlier stages, there are many possibilities to explore. How Wonka met the Oompa Loompa, his rise to fame as a successful businessman and his endeavors before he met Charlie being just a few examples. 

The 2005 adaptation of the novel, directed by Tim Burton, provided a flashback into Wonka’s life showing an estranged relationship with his father. Paul King, best known for directorial work on the “Paddington” films is set to direct the film and is looking to create something unique with the character. 

“Charlie and the Chocolate Factory” (2005), courtesy of Warner Bros.

On May 24, Deadline announced Timothée Chalamet had been cast to play young Wonka. Unlike his previous work in “Call Me by Your Name” and “Little Women,” Chalamet’s reps shared that he will be singing and dancing in multiple musical numbers. Both Chalamet as an actor and Wonka as a Character will be new versions of themselves. 

There is much speculation as to how the whimsical, dark fairy tale world of Dahl’s novel will be interpreted. According to Deadline, “This marks the third time WB has taken on the Wonka story.” With that, there is great anticipation for the film. A trailer and further details on the cast have yet to be released. 

“Wonka” is set to release in theaters in March of 2023.

By Jada Hart

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