Johnny Depp expected for British Willy Wonka premier

The new Hollywood adaptation of Charlie and the Chocolate Factory receives its British premiere tonight.

The new Hollywood adaptation of Charlie and the Chocolate Factory receives its British premiere tonight.

Johnny Depp plays Willy Wonka in the €120m film directed by Tim Burton and based on the much-loved book by Roald Dahl.

Depp will be in Leicester Square tonight, along with the film’s 13-year-old star Freddie Highmore, who plays Charlie Bucket.

Charlie is one of five lucky children who finds a golden ticket hidden inside a Wonka bar.

The ticket wins them entry to the weird and wonderful chocolate factory where they meet the mysterious Willy Wonka and his Oompa Loompas.

The story was first made into a film in 1971 starring Gene Wilder.

Dahl hated it and refused permission for a sequel.

Since his death, Dahl’s widow, Felicity, has turned down countless offers of a remake.

But she has given Burton her blessing and reportedly told him her late husband would have loved the new film.

Depp is sure that Burton, director of Beetle Juice and Edward Scissorhands, is the right man for the job.

“Tim Burton and Roald Dahl are a match made in heaven,” he said.

But Gene Wilder is not happy that the story is being remade.

“It’s all about money,” he complained in a recent interview. “It’s just some people sitting around thinking, ‘How can we make some more money?’ Why else would you remake Willy Wonka? I don’t see the point of going back and doing it all over again.”

The film also stars Burton’s partner Helena Bonham-Carter as Charlie’s mum and British actor James Fox as father of the obnoxious Veruca Salt.

It is released nationwide on July 29 accompanied by a £5 million promotional campaign which includes a range of “scrumdiddlyumptious” Wonka bars.

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