Timothée Chalamet is proud to be a part of “Wonka.”
All the singing and dancing aside, Chalamet, who plays the beloved chocolatier in the film, is most proud of being part of “a joyous movie, that is about bringing a light into a world that is in desperate need of it,” he says.

When Chalamet read “Wonka,” he did feel “the classic thespian challenge—the singing, the dancing.” But when he thinks about the film’s reason for being, “it is to bring joy into the world,” he says. “It’s to encourage dreaming; to encourage the dreamers to continue dreaming; to encourage declaring yourself as you are, who you are, without question. It’s to declare that to share in kindness and enthusiasm is to paint a way forward, not only for yourself, but for those around you. It’s about community, and it’s about community surviving in spaces of erosion. It’s about light and love. I’m so proud to have been a part of that.”

Wonka, an intoxicating mix of magic and music, mayhem and emotion, tells the story of Willy Wonka’s younger days, when he was just starting out as a chocolate-maker hoping to share his chocolate with the world by setting up shop at the cathedral of candy known as the Galeries Gourmet—with nothing but a few sovereigns (coins) and a hat full of dreams. A prequel to the 2005 hit Charlie and the Chocolate Factory, Wonka, based on the beloved character created by best-selling children’s book author Roald Dahl, is written and directed by Paul King (Paddington films) and produced by David Heyman (the Harry Potter movies).
To make sure he does the iconic character of Willy Wonka justice, Chalamet worked hard in preparation for the role, especially for the singing and dancing bits. “I had a lot of singing and vocal training with our head of the music department, the British James Taylor, not the other James Taylor,” shares Chalamet. “Also, there was a lot of dance training with Chris Gattelli, a fellow New Yorker and a fantastic choreographer. Then, repetition, repetition, repetition, repetition. It was smart, because by the time the movie started, the physical stamina was there.
“And I have to say that this was the most physically challenging project I’ve ever been on. This was every scene. There’s the enthusiasm of the character coupled with the fact that there isn’t a scene that’s really static. That’s not only great for the story, but it was also a great lesson as an actor. I was grateful to have that run up because of the shape I was able to get into.”

Watch Chalamet talk about “Becoming Wonka” in this featurette: https://youtu.be/bBqknIar39o

It helped that he had a great co-star in Calah Lane, who plays Noodle, a smart, cynical, sardonic young orphan who befriends Willy. Chalamet was very much impressed with his younger co-star. “It’s a huge endeavor to be on a project when you’re this young. I was working as an actor at this age, but not on things this long—maybe a day or two here or there. She really has her head on her shoulders; she’s a fantastic actress,” says Chalamet.

Lucky for Lane, there were days on set when she wasn’t the only kid. And Chalamet treasured such days too because they brought about a very positive energy. “The days when we had a lot of kids around, it brought a sincerity, an earnestness and a joy to the set, especially when you’re wearing the burgundy coat and you see the way people are reacting… It was great.”

Get ready for your sweet holiday treat. Wonka opens in Philippine cinemas December 6, one week ahead of the U.S. A perfect Christmas indeed!

About “Wonka”
Based on the extraordinary character at the center of “Charlie and the Chocolate Factory,” Roald Dahl’s most iconic children’s book and one of the best-selling children’s books of all time, “Wonka” tells the wondrous story of how the world’s greatest inventor, magician and chocolate-maker became the beloved Willy Wonka we know today. “Wonka” is an intoxicating mix of magic and music, mayhem and emotion, all told with fabulous heart and humor. Starring Timothée Chalamet in the title role, this irresistibly vivid and inventive big screen spectacle will introduce audiences to a young Willy Wonka, chock-full of ideas and determined to change the world one delectable bite at a time—proving that the best things in life begin with a dream, and if you’re lucky enough to meet Willy Wonka, anything is possible.

Directed by Paul King, with a screenplay he co-wrote with Simon Farnaby. Produced by David Heyman, Alexandra Derbyshire and Luke Kelly.

Starring alongside Chalamet are Calah Lane (“The Day Shall Come”), Emmy and Peabody Award winner Keegan-Michael Key (“The Prom,” “Schmigadoon”), Paterson Joseph (“Vigil,” “Noughts + Crosses”), Matt Lucas (“Paddington,” “Little Britain”), Mathew Baynton (“The Wrong Mans,” “Ghosts”), Oscar nominee Sally Hawkins (“The Shape of Water,” the “Paddington” films, “Spencer”), Rowan Atkinson (the “Johnny English” and “Mr. Bean” films, “Love Actually”), Jim Carter (“Downton Abbey”), with Oscar winner Olivia Colman (“The Favourite”). The film also stars Natasha Rothwell (“White Lotus,” “Insecure”), Rich Fulcher (“Marriage Story,” “Disenchantment”), Rakhee Thakrar (“Sex Education,” “Four Weddings and a Funeral”), Tom Davis (“Paddington 2,” “King Gary”) and Kobna Holdbrook-Smith (“Paddington 2,” “Zack Snyder’s Justice League,” “Mary Poppins Returns”).

In cinemas December 6, “Wonka” is distributed in the Philippines by Warner Bros. Pictures, a Warner Bros. Discovery company.

Join the conversation online and use the hashtag #WonkaMovie

Photo Credit: Jaap Buittendijk
Copyright Notice: © 2023 Warner Bros. Entertainment Inc. All Rights Reserved.

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