Long before the world-wide hunt for the golden ticket, there was a boy with a dream… and a lot of chocolate. After 58 years, there is finally an origin story for Mr. Wonka himself. Lead actor Timothée Chalamet has already stated that he would come back to play the chocolatier again if asked.
Wonka, directed by Paul King and released in December of 2023, has delivered a family-friendly prequel to Charlie and the Chocolate Factory written by Roald Dahl. In an article posted by Time Magazine, Dahl never published an official backstory for his character which allowed King to take from the original publications, and both Mel Stuart’s Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory (1971) and Tim Burton’s Charlie and the Chocolate Factory (2005).
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Turning Sweet Dreams into Delicious Realities
King’s story follows a young Willy Wonka who dreams of opening his very own chocolate factory. With old-timey politics and conquering the chocolate cartel, Wonka goes from your average dreamer to the magical chocolatier the world knows him as today. This film allows its viewers to see the beginnings of iconic candies, Wonka phrases, fashion and musical pieces that are clearly referencing the original movies.
Even with 86% rotten tomatoes, the public reviews are on both sides of the spectrum. Many nostalgic parents are leaving raving positive reviews, while more Gen-Z viewers have been leaving confused and more negative reviews on popular social media sites like TikTok and Twitter. It appears not many younger generation viewers appreciated the musical aspect of the film, though one could argue their credibility as all adaptations out of the physical book itself have been musicals. These reviews are not shared by the cast, as most have publicly admitted that they would come back to continue the chocolate dream, including Chalamet himself.
While there is no clear direction for a sequel to Wonka, there is 25 years within the timeline to explore before reaching Dahl’s original plot. Both King and Chalamet agreed in an exclusive interview with Entertainment Today that there are dozens of possibilities within the timeline, showing we might just get another sweet treat in theaters in the future.
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