More than 50 years after Gene Wilder somersaulted into film history, Timothée Chalamet takes on the role of eccentric chocolatier Willy Wonka.
On Tuesday, viewers got their first look at the prequel movie Wonka in a new trailer. The film, due out on December 15, has been described in press releases as “a heady mix of magic and music, mayhem and emotion” that tells the story of how Willy Wonka built the confectionery empire starred in Roald Dahl’s film 1964 children’s novel “Charlie and the Chocolate Factory” and its 1971 And 2005 cinema adaptations.
In addition to Chalamet in the title role, Wonka also stars Calah Lane, Rowan Atkinson, Olivia Colman, Keegan-Michael Key and Paterson Joseph. Meanwhile, Hugh Grant seems ready to steal the show as the Oompa-Loompa.
Watch the trailer for Wonka below.
Director Paul King, who co-wrote the screenplay for Wonka with a frequent collaborator Simon Farnaby, seems to have understood how popular Dahl’s story is with readers and moviegoers of a certain age. For example, the score of the trailer contains a few bars of “Pure fantasy“, the best-known song from the 1971 film.
Still, he and Farnaby had to look beyond the 1964 novel (and its less appreciated 1972 sequel): “Charlie and the Big Glass Elevator‘) as material, as Dahl gave few references to Wonka’s early years in his books. They found their inspiration in the author’s archives, which contained a number of never published stories and unfinished ideas about the character.
“I love the idea of telling a story where Willy Wonka wasn’t just this magical, adorable, extraordinary, inventive character,” King said said Entertainment Weekly“but where he was actually the emotional heart of the film.”
Calling Chalamet “such a brilliant actor who brings really deep feelings to a family film,” King said, “I really don’t think there are many people who could possibly play that role.”