Released in 1971, Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory is arguably one of the most iconic Hollywood films of the 20th century. A story about a group of lucky kids who win the chance to tour a chocolate factory packed full of secrets, the film has lived on in pop culture for decades as many kids wondered what such a factory could really be like. The universe of Willy Wonka was reimagined in 2005’s Charlie and the Chocolate Factory, introducing the imaginative storyline to a new generation of fans over thirty years later. Now it appears as though Warner Brothers will be attempting to do so again with a new project Wonka that will serve as a prequel to the 1971 original film, and they have added an intriguing name to its cast in Keegan-Michael Key.
While the 2005 film seemingly served as a continuation of the 1971 film, the upcoming Wonka project will instead turn back the dial to the classic film many of us know and love. The project will serve as a prequel to the 1971 movie, an adaptation of a novel written by Roald Dahl in 1964, that will explore the origins of the chocolatier at the center of the beloved classic. So far we know that Timothée Chalamet has been cast to play the titular star, and while we know that Key has been cast to appear in the project it is still unclear as of yet what his role will be. It is believed that it will be a co-starring role with Chalamet however, which means we are bound to see plenty of him in the new film whenever it makes its way to theaters. The project is additionally set to be directed by Paddington director Paul King and production will be overseen by Harry Potter producer David Heyman.
Even without a prequel film, Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory continues to be an important piece of popular culture in 2021. The film’s iconic imagery and whimsicalness helped it stand out amongst the rest in 1971, and subsequently live on for several decades. Now, as fans celebrate the 50th anniversary of the timeless classic, they now have a new project to look forward to. Fans and interested moviegoers can eagerly await further updates about the new film Wonka in the coming weeks.