Charlie and the Chocolate Factory is a 2005 musical fantasy comedy film directed by Tim Burton and written by John August, based on the 1964 British novel of the same name by Roald Dahl. The film stars Johnny Depp as Willy Wonka and Freddie Highmore as Charlie Bucket. The storyline follows Charlie, who wins a contest and, along with four other contest winners, is led by Wonka on a tour of his chocolate factory, the most magnificent in the world.
Development for a second adaptation of Charlie and the Chocolate Factory (filmed previously as Willy Wonka & the Chocolate Factory in 1971) began in 1991, which resulted in Warner Bros. providing the Dahl Estate with total artistic control. Prior to Burton's involvement, directors such as Gary Ross, Rob Minkoff, Martin Scorsese and Tom Shadyac had been involved, while actors Bill Murray, Nicolas Cage, Jim Carrey, Michael Keaton, Brad Pitt, Will Smith, Adam Sandler, and many others, were either in discussion with or considered by the studio to play Wonka.
Burton immediately brought regular collaborators Depp and Danny Elfman aboard. Charlie and the Chocolate Factory represents the first time since The Nightmare Before Christmas that Elfman contributed to a film score using written songs and his vocals. Filming took place from June to December 2004 at Pinewood Studios in the United Kingdom. Charlie and the Chocolate Factory was released to positive critical reception and was a box office success, grossing $475 million worldwide.
Charlie Bucket (Freddie Highmore) is a poor boy who lives near the Wonka Candy Company. The company's owner, Willy Wonka (Johnny Depp), has for long closed access to his factory due to problems concerning industrial espionage that led him to fire all his employees, among them Charlie's Grandpa Joe (David Kelly). One day, Wonka announces a contest, in which Golden Tickets have been placed in five random Wonka Bars worldwide, and the winners will be given a full tour of the factory as well as a lifetime supply of chocolate, while one ticketholder will be given a special prize at the end of the tour.
Wonka's sales subsequently skyrocket, and the first four tickets are found fairly quickly. The recipients are Augustus Gloop (Philip Wiegratz), a gluttonous German boy; Veruca Salt (Julia Winter), a very spoiled English girl; Violet Beauregarde (AnnaSophia Robb), a competitive gum chewer, and Mike Teavee (Jordan Fry), an arrogant television and video game addict. Charlie tries twice to find a ticket, but both bars come up empty. After overhearing that the final ticket was found in Russia, Charlie finds a ten-dollar note, and purchases a Wonka Bar at a news shop. At the exact moment it was revealed that the Russian ticket was forged, Charlie discovers the real fifth ticket inside the wrapper. Charlie first considers an offer of $500 for the ticket, but decides to keep it, and bring Grandpa Joe to accompany him on the factory tour.
Charlie and the other ticket holders are greeted by Wonka outside the factory, who then leads them into the facility. During the tour, each of the bad children disobey Wonka's orders after being tempted by something related to their individual character flaws, and suffer various consequences: Augustus is sucked up a chocolate extraction pipe after falling into a chocolate river from which he was drinking, Violet is turned into an oversized blueberry after chewing unstable three-course-meal gum, Veruca is pushed into a garbage chute by worker squirrels after she tries to take one as a pet, and Mike is shrunk with a teleporter that he uses on himself. Wonka's employees, the Oompa-Loompas (Deep Roy) sing a song of morality after each elimination. The children later leave the factory with an exaggerated characteristic or deformity related to their demise – Augustus covered in chocolate, Violet flexible and violet-colored, Mike overstretched and Veruca merely covered in garbage.
Wonka then invites Charlie to come live and work in the factory with him, and reveals that the purpose of the Golden Tickets and the tour was to make the "least rotten" child the heir of the factory itself. The only catch is that Charlie must leave his family behind, because Wonka believes family is a hindrance while a chocolatier needed creative freedom – a philosophy Wonka developed due to his dentist father, Dr. Wilbur Wonka (Christopher Lee), denying his son candy because of the potential risk to his teeth. After sneaking over a piece of candy, Wonka was instantly hooked, and ran away to follow his dreams.
As his family is the most important thing in his life, Charlie refuses Wonka's offer. Charlie and his family are living contently a while later, however Wonka is too depressed to make candy the way he used to, and turns to Charlie for advice. Charlie decides to help Wonka confront and reconcile with his estranged father; Wonka finally realizes the value of family, while his father learns to accept his son for who he is, and not what he does. In the end, Charlie has the chocolate factory, and Wonka has patched up with his family.
Johnny Depp as Willy Wonka Blair Dunlop as Young Willy Wonka Freddie Highmore as Charlie Bucket David Kelly as Grandpa Joe Helena Bonham Carter as Mrs. Bucket Noah Taylor as Mr. Bucket Missi Pyle as Mrs. Beauregarde James Fox as Mr. Salt Adam Godley as Mr. Teavee Franziska Troegner as Mrs. Gloop Christopher Lee as Dr. Wilbur Wonka Deep Roy as Oompa-Loompas (with vocal work by Danny Elfman) AnnaSophia Robb as Violet Beauregarde Philip Wiegratz as Augustus Gloop Julia Winter as Veruca Salt Jordan Fry as Mike Teavee Liz Smith as Grandma Georgina Eileen Essell as Grandma Josephine David Morris as Grandpa George Geoffrey Holder as the Narrator
- Nestlé provided 1,850 bars of real chocolate.
- Forty squirrels were trained for the scene where they pounce upon Veruca Salt.
- To his surprise, Deep Roy played every Oompa-Loompa himself, repeating the same movements several hundred times. While these were then put together digitally, each Oompa-Loompa represents a separate performance by Roy. In recognition of this, Roy's salary was raised to one million dollars.
- The lollipops on the trees, the giant pink sugar canes, and the giant humbugs were real candy.
- Johnny Depp was so impressed with Freddie Highmore's performance in Finding Neverland (2004) that he recommended Tim Burton observe him for the role of Charlie Bucket.
- Willy Wonka's colorful cane is actually filled with Nerds candy, which are sold under the Willy Wonka brand.
- Charlie's father works at a toothpaste factory which produces Smilex toothpaste. "Smylex" is also the name of the poisonous gas concocted by The Joker in Batman (1989), also directed by Tim Burton.
- Roald Dahl was well-known, when he was alive, for hating greedy children, spoiled children, ignorant children, and televisions. This provided him with a basis for Augustus, Veruca, Violet, and Mike.
- The singing voice of the Oompa-Loompas belongs to that of Danny Elfman, who overdubbed himself dozens of times.
- Screenwriter John August had never even seen Willy Wonka & the Chocolate Factory (1971), when asked by Tim Burton to write the script. After finishing the screenplay, he finally watched the 1971 version, only to be surprised at how much darker the "family" film was compared to his own.
- Each Oompa Loompa song is in the style of a different musical era. Additionally, Willy Wonka's comment for each song is a phrase from the corresponding era: Augustus Gloop, Broadway Musical ("Bravo! Well done. Aren't they delightful? Aren't they charming?" clapping and praises like what people say after a show); Violet Beauregarde, Disco ("Come on, let's boogie!"); Veruca Salt - Psychadelic ("Well, let's keep on truckin'."); Mike Teevee, Rock ("On with the tour!" in reference to the plethora of rock concert tours).
- Dr. Wonka tells young Willy that some people are allergic to chocolate to discourage him from eating any candy. As a child, Johnny Depp (older Willy) was allergic to chocolate.
- Some of the buttons in the Glass elevator include: Incompetent Fools, T-Bone Steak Jell-O, Secretarial Poodles, Cocoa Cats, Mechanical Clouds, Stars in their Pies, Nice Plums, Up And Out, Fragile Eggs, Black Box of Frogs, Weird Lollipops, Mighty Jam Monitor, Creative Dog Flip, Elastic Forest, Leaky Canes, Dessert Island, Pie Cream, Spewed Vegetables, Naffy Taffy, Lickety Split Peas, Honeycombs and Brushes, Old Sneezes and Smells Department, Television Room, Whizzdoodles, Chocolate Lip Rookies, Blackberry Sausages, Yankee Doodles, Orange Egg Flip, Root Beer Goggles, Pastry Room, Heart Shaped Lungs, and Projection Room.
- Quite a lot of the chocolate things such as trees, flowers, et cetera, featured in the movie, were created by chocolate shop Choccywoccydoodah in Brighton, England. The shop displayed and sold some of the creations in the shop after the release of the film.
- In the same room as the machine that makes the "three-course meal" gum, there are large rotating drums that look like bowls filled with colored balls. These are real machines that make large jawbreakers, or Gobstoppers, which are sold under the Willy Wonka brand.
- In Charlie's bedroom, there are wrappers of every Wonka bar he has ever eaten on the wall.
- During one of Willy's flashbacks as a child, he has braces which keep his lips from meeting, however his voice properly makes a "p" sound when he says words such as "pieces."
- Mike Teavee says: "First off, there's a difference between waves and particles!". Actually there is not. All energy and matter express the so called wave-particle duality, where they can be regarded both as particles and as waves. Someone as science-oriented as Mike Teavee should be aware that this has been known since 1924. He most likely meant "There is a difference between energy and matter" which is much more relevant in this situation in that energy can easily be transmitted while matter cannot, which is what makes Willy Wonka's television camera so amazing.
- When Veruca looks up at Willy Wonka and the Buckets in the flying glass elevator, she asks her father for a "flying glass elevator." Being from England, Veruca should have used the word "lift" rather than elevator.
- The "Golden Ticket" is placed on the back side (smooth side) of the chocolate bar before the wrapping, however, when opened, the Golden Ticket appears on the top side (the "printed side") of the bar.
- In the nut sorting room, the tubes are filled with hazel nuts but when they come out of the tubes they are walnuts.
- The adult Willy Wonka has blue eyes and the young Willy Wonka has dark brown eyes.
- When they are showing the winners of the 3rd and 4th golden ticket winners, there are 4 shots of Charlie watching the TV. In the first and third shot, grandma Georgina's head is upward off the pillow. In the second and fourth shots, her head is resting on the pillow laying down.
- In the Nut Sorting Room, Veruca stands with her hands on the railing in front of her. There are a matched pair of shots over her shoulders where her hands are clearly visible. (The shots approximate to Willy Wonka's and Mr Salt's Points of View.) In the shot over Veruca's right shoulder the gap at the side of the gate is clearly seen between her resting hands. In the reverse angle over her left shoulder the handrail is unbroken.
- When the kids and their guardians are walking from the main gate to the front door, the shadow cast by the factory on the courtyard changes many times.
- When Willy Wonka dips the pink ladle into the chocolate river, the chocolate is spilling over the edge of the ladle. But when he hands it to Charlie, the outside of the ladle is completely free of chocolate residue.
- While in the chocolate room, Mike is smashing a candy pumpkin. You see it break into three pieces before his dad comes over, however, when Mike is speaking to his dad, the pumpkin is in smithereens, and Mike is no longer standing in the pumpkin goo.
- When the chocolate castle liquefies, you can see the melted chocolate hit the princess on the face in a certain pattern and a small dab on the nose. The next time we see the princess the chocolate pattern has changed.
- When Mr. Salt walks in front of Wonka to go down to fetch Veruca it would not be possible because as the gate swings open it would be in Mr. Salt's way. As Wonka unlocks the gate you can see Wonka's hand opening the gate slowly and in the next scene you can hear the gate still opening, so Wonka would still have his hand on the gate which totally blocks Mr. Salt's path.
- When Charlie receives the toothpaste cap from his father that is to become "the head for Willy Wonka", there is a shot of just his hand holding it up with the "hat" pointed upward. In the next shot, the toothpaste cap has turned completely upside down.
- When the Oompa-Loompas roll Violet away, she constantly changes positions, going from rolling forward to rolling on her side, yet there is no sign that the Oompa-Loompas have turned her.
- While the Japanese children are waiting to enter the Tokyo candy store, all of the text on the Wonka bars is written in traditional Hirgana. However, when the children enter the store, some Wonka bars are seen with the logo now written in English. These bars still retain the flavor and Golden Ticket contest announcement written in Hirgana, though.
- The glass collapsible tube that picks up Augustus has five separated sections but before it picks up Augustus it has three sections together on the top and two on the bottom.
- When Charlie is handing bits of his Wonka bar to his family members, it can be seen that he hands his father two separate segments of the chocolate bar, however in the next scene when his father goes to take a bite of the chocolate he's been given, the two segments are still attached to one another.
- When Willy Wonka is having his shoes polished by Charlie, the crew is reflected in his black sunglasses.
- As the sun comes up the morning after the flyers have been passed around the city, you can see an extra start to step out (then duck back in) of the doorway just beyond the flyered pole that is in the foreground.
- After Willy Wonka walks into the glass elevator a second time, you can see the reflection of a crew member walking to the left.
- When Mike Teavee is about to be transported through the air across to the television, the harness around his waist is visible just below his shirt as he is lifting up off the ground.
- When Willy Wonka walks into the elevator after congratulating Charlie, he falls to the floor. In the reflection of the wobbling elevator door, you can see a crew member moving. The reflection is not of Charlie's grandpa.
- Augustus' home town of Düsseldorf is shown to have old-fashioned houses with wooden frames, like in a Bavarian, Austrian or Swiss town. Düsseldorf is in Nordrhein-Westfalen, where there is no such architecture. Even more so, Düsseldorf is shown to be near a huge mountain range, of which there are none even remotely to the Ruhrgebiet, which is a rather flat landscape.
- The photo in the 'Russian Ticket a Fake' article shows a group of people beside St. Basil's Cathedral in Moscow. However, the article text states that the boy who has "found" the Golden Ticket lives in St. Petersburg.
- At the Tokyo candy store, several Wonka candy bars appear with Katakana print on the label. The title for the candy, "Nutty Crunch Surprise" is written out as "NATTI KURANCHI SA!RAIZU". The word "Surprise" is written out incorrectly as "SA!RAIZU" while it might be more properly written out as "SAPPARAIZU!".
- When Augustus is trapped by a vacuum near the top of the pipe, the seals below him begin to blow out. A vacuum doesn't work that way, if he were blocking the pipe all the pressure would've been on the parts of the pipe between him and whatever was creating the vacuum.
- The cocoa bean pods in the jungle appear to be growing on twigs. In nature, they grow from thicker branches or trunks.
- At the beginning of the movie when it's lights out, Charlie sees the factory through a big hole on the house roof. He can easily get hypothermia from the cold wintry night with a hole that big.
- When the news vans are outside the golden ticket winners homes, the truck outside of Mike Teavee in Colorado has the wrong call letters. They start with the letter "W". They should start with "K" for a TV station west of the Mississippi. Also, the live truck in front of Violet's home in Atlanta has call letters beginning with a "K" instead of "W". While this is most often true, there are a few cases of call letters starting with "K" in the eastern US. Examples: Philadelphia's CBS station, KYW and in Pittsburgh, KDKA. One example of a station west of the Mississippi River that starts with a W is CBS affiliate WCCO in Minneapolis, Minnesota. (The river winds through both Minneapolis and St. Paul; the station is west and south of the river.)
- In the "flag room", many of the flags appear to be mirrored or upside-down, but that's because they are flying in the opposite direction of the staff than we are used to.
- Willy Wonka says he must keep his factory warm because the Oompa-Loompas hate the cold, but he later passes several of them on Fudge Mountain where it appears to be snowing and looks too cold. However, since fudge is produced using confectionery sugar (also commonly called powdered sugar) the snow is actually sugar, which is appropriate since soft snow ideal for skiing is called powder.
- When Willy Wonka is eating a caterpillar for the first time ever, his tongue is already green.
- When Mike Teavee pushes the "Television Room" button in the elevator, the elevator continues downward and then takes a sharp turn to the right. However, the actors lean toward the right (toward the direction the elevator moves), rather than moving to the left as one would as a reaction to the movement.
- When Willy goes back to see his father and the dentist examines Willy's teeth, the fingers holding the mirror completely change position between the shots from inside Willy's mouth to outside, both times. The size of the handle also changes between shots.
- When Willy is having his teeth examined near the end of the film, the view from inside his mouth shows his lower teeth being examined, but the next shot, looking into his mouth shows his father just turning the mirror over, having just looked at his upper teeth.
- At Dr. Wonka's house, Charlie picks up a picture of a boy, presumably Willy. However, from Willy's flashbacks, we know he wore a head brace while he was a child and ran away from home at an early age. The boy in the picture is clearly much older than the Willy in the flashbacks and he wears no head gear.
- After Mike Teavee gets shrunk by the TV ray, Willy Wonka orders him and his father to the taffy puller room. Immediately afterward, Wonka has a very short conversation with Charlie and Grandpa Joe, they get into the elevator, and blast through the roof. They then fly down over the factory entrance, where Mike Teavee is already stretched and leaving the building, just 2-3 minutes after Wonka had given the taffy-pulling order.