Director Tim Burton is busy indeed. Simultaneous to production commencing in London on the stop-motion CORPSE BRIDE, he has also started production in the same city on CHARLIE AND THE CHOCOLATE FACTORY. Based on the classic Roald Dahl novel and filmed once before in 1971 as WILLY WONKA AND THE CHOCOLATE FACTORY, CHARLIE is a Warner Bros. Pictures and Village Roadshow Pictures production.
The fantasy stars Johnny Depp (hot off his Oscar-nominated PIRATES OF THE CARIBBEAN: THE CURSE OF THE BLACK PEARL
) as ingenious candymaker Willy Wonka, marking the actor's fourth collaboration with Burton. Twelve-year-old British actor Freddie Highmore, who costars in the films TWO BROTHERS and FINDING NEVERLAND (opposite Depp) takes on the title role of Charlie.
Joining the ensemble are Helena Bonham Carter, David Kelly, Noah Taylor, James Fox, Missi Pyle and Christopher Lee.
Rounding out the cast as the four lucky children of diverse backgrounds who, along with Charlie, win "golden tickets" in a global contest for an exclusive tour of Wonka's famous factory are: Jordan Fry as Mike Teavee; AnnaSophia Robb as Violet Beauregarde; Julia Winter as Veruca Salt; and Philip Wiegratz as Augustus Gloop.
The film is produced by Brad Grey and Richard D. Zanuck from a screenplay by John August. Felicity Dahl, Patrick McCormick, Michael Siegel and Bruce Berman serve as executive producers.
Alex McDowell is the production designer and Nick Davies is vfx supervisor, with Moving Picture Co. supplying most of the vfx along with help from Framestore CFC. Cinesite is building the models at their shop in Shepperton.
Long isolated from his own family, Wonka launches a worldwide contest to select an heir to his candy empire. Five lucky children, including Charlie, the good-hearted boy from a poor family, draw golden tickets from Wonka chocolate bars and win a guided tour of the legendary candy-making facility that no outsider has seen in 15 years.
CHARLIE AND THE CHOCOLATE FACTORY will be released domestically on July 15, 2005.