Timothée Chalamet to Play Willy Wonka in Origin Story Film (Adding to the List Of Things Nobody Asked For, But OK)

If there’s one thing we learned from Cadillac’s eco-friendly Superbowl commercial, in which Timothée Chalamet plays Edgar Scissorhands, it’s that he is the new Johnny Depp. From indie actor to full-fledged A-lister, he’s now destined to embark on an illustrious career that will ultimately submerge into chaos following a string of bad decisions (and one very toxic marriage)—broken vodka bottles and high-profile lawsuits. Or, Chalamet doesn’t go down that path. Instead, he marries Depp’s daughter, Lily-Rose, and creates a dynasty that succeeds the Fonda, Douglas, Sutherland, Wayans, Coppola, and, hopefully, the Kardashian families…

According to Deadline, Chalamet is set to star in Wonka, an origin story musical detailing the eccentric candy maker’s life before the events of Charlie and the Chocolate Factory. Warner Bros’ third take on Roald Dahl’s characters/story, following Gene Wilder’s performance in 1971’s Willy Wonka & the Chocolate Factory and Tim the Depp-driven 2005 adaptation featuring dark flashbacks of Wonka’s unfortunate childhood. Piggybacking off of Joker starring Joaquin Phoenix and Cruella starring Emma Stone, Wanka looks to capitalize on the trope of blaming society for madness with social commentary on the mistreatment of outliers, one-word/name titles, orphans who change their names, and an ever-lasting interest in spinoffs no one asked for. 

We’re not mad about it, as long as it’s original. Wonka remains shrouded in mystery—there’s still room to explore the franchise’s dark and colorful dichotomy. Hopefully, it doesn’t strip the character and his story of its wonderment and heart. Adolescent Willy’s road to the Oompa Loompas doesn’t need to be shrouded in complete and utter darkness. With the help of Chalamet and some upbeat musical number, let’s buck the cliché and prove that to be odd doesn’t necessarily mean to be damaged. Admittedly, Wonka doesn’t murder talk show hosts or skin puppies…To quote Dahl himself for no particular rhyme or reason, “we are the music makers, and we are the dreamers of dreams.” 

The prequel will be helmed by Paddington’s Paul King and is slated for a theatrical release on March 17, 2023. 

Cover Photo: Cadillac/Warner Bros.