Moviegoers won’t just see Timothee Chalamet in “Dune: Part Two” this fall. After the star gets the sands of Arrakis out of his shoes, he will pick up a cane and top hat and show off his singing voice in “Wonka,” a musical based on Roald Dahl’s enigmatic, colorful and slightly sinister candyman.
The trailer shown Tuesday at CinemaCon shows Chalamet as Willy Wonka as he gathers cacao beans in Africa and introduces the world to his candy to the first time. But he faces the wrath of the “chocolate cartel,” which has cornered the market on candy and is crushing any aspiring competitors.
So how does Wonka thwart them? Invent chocolate that makes people fly. “Mark my words, this is going to be the greatest chocolate shop the world has ever seen,” he promises to a delighted crowd.
Of course, a Wonka origin story wouldn’t be complete without the Oompa-Loompas, and the trailer offered a first look at Hugh Grant as one of the famous orange creatures. When young Willy says that he’s never heard of an Oompa-Loompa before, Grant offers to introduce himself through a “ruinously catchy” song that no one will ever be able to get out of their heads.
Chalamet appeared at CinemaCon to discuss how his Wonka is different than the one in Dahl’s novel and which Gene Wilder famously brought to the screen. While the Wonka that Charlie Bucket meets is a jaded, cynical man who has cut himself off from the world out of disgust with the greed of others, Chalamet’s version still has hope and wonder that he wants to share in the world.
“Paddington” filmmaker Paul King directed the movie with an ensemble cast that includes Keegan-Michael Key, Olivia Colman, Rowan Atkinson and Sally Hawkins. The film hits theaters Dec. 15.