Timothée Chalamet will soon grace the silver screen as Willy Wonka in the self-titled film. Director Paul King recently spoke about why Chalamet was the right choice to fill Gene Wilder's iconic shoes.
Wonka tells the story of a young Willy Wonka and serves as a prequel to both Roald Dahl's Charlie and the Chocolate Factory novel and the 1971 film adaptation starring Wilder, so the crew had to find a younger actor to take on the iconic role.
Filling big shoes
Insert, Chalamet — one of the world's biggest stars. “I really don't think there are many people who could play this role at all,” King told Entertainment Weekly.
“Those are mighty big shoes to fill,” he continued. However, he believes that Chalamet can do it due to the fact he was able to channel “the manic and mischievous and mysterious energy you'd expect from Willy Wonka.”
Additionally, King praised Chalamet's dramatic acting chops. “He's such a brilliant actor at expressing really deep emotions within the context of a family movie. He's just extraordinary as well at singing and dancing. He's got the voice of an angel and the toes of… I don't know what toes. I can't wait for people to see it. I think it's gonna blow people away,” he said.
In conclusion, while King expects Chalamet to give one heck of a performance, there's no replacing Gene Wilder's performance. Rather, he hopes to ensure that Chalamet's performance as Wonka is its own thing. “I'm just happy to embrace that and walk in those enormous footsteps,” King concluded.
Paul King is directing the film and once again teamed up with Simon Farnaby (Paddington 2) for Wonka and co-wrote the script with him. Olivia Colman, Sally Hawkins, Hugh Grant, and Keegan-Michael Key are also set to appear in the film.
Timothée Chalamet will be Warner Bros.' featured player this fall with roles in the upcoming Dune: Part Two and Wonka. He is coming off roles in The French Dispatch, Don't Look Up, and Luca Guadagnino's Bones and All.
Wonka will be released on December 15.