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Timothée Chalamet to play Willy Wonka in origin story

The studio said the film will “focus on a young Willy Wonka and his adventures prior to opening the world’s most famous chocolate factory.”

NEW YORK — Timothée Chalamet will play Willy Wonka in a musical based on the early life of Roald Dahl's eccentric chocolatier.

Warner Bros. and the Roald Dahl Story Co. announced Monday that the 25-year-old Chalamet will star in “Wonka.” The studio said the film will “focus on a young Willy Wonka and his adventures prior to opening the world's most famous chocolate factory.”

Paul King ("Paddington," “Paddington 2”) will direct from a script he wrote with Simon Farnaby, with “Harry Potter” producer David Heyman producing. Warner Bros. earlier this year set a release date in March 2023.

Gene Wilder starred in 1971's “Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory,” based on Dahl's celebrated book. In Tim Burton's 2005 reboot, Johnny Depp played Wonka in a Warner Bros. release that grossed $475 million worldwide.

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Credit: Evan Agostini/Invision/AP
Actor Timothee Chalamet attends the premiere of "Little Women" in New York on Dec. 7, 2019. (Photo by Evan Agostini/Invision/AP, File)

Taika Waititi ("Jojo Rabbit," “Thor: Ragnarok”) is separately making a pair of animated series for Netflix, one centered on the world of “Charlie and the Chocolate Factory” and one based on the Oompa-Loopmas.

Chalamet, the Oscar-nominated star of Luca Guadagnino's “Call Me By Your Name," has a number of high-profile projects upcoming, including Denis Villenueve's “Dune,” Wes Anderson's “The French Dispatch," Adam McKay's “Don't Look Up" and Guadagnino's “Bones & All."

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