Published 21st September 2021
Last updated 12th October 2021
Lyme Regis has won the golden ticket as scenes were filmed on the Cobb on the 11th and 12th October for the upcoming ‘Wonka’ film, an all-new adaptation based on the characters created by children’s author Roald Dahl for the beloved novel Charlie and the Chocolate Factory.
Though plot details have been kept under wraps, the Warner Brothers prequel film will focus on “a young Willy Wonka and his adventures prior to opening the world’s most famous chocolate factory. Wonka is expected to be released in cinemas on 17th March 2023.
In preparation for filming, historic steam drifter “Lydia Eva″ built in 1930, docked in Lyme Regis harbour on Monday 20th September. Lydia Eva is the world's last surviving steam-powered herring drifter, normally based in Great Yarmouth, Norfolk. The 95 foot long vessel is believed to feature in the film as the boat that brings young Willy Wonka to England in the new film directed by Paul King.
Since the arrival of Lydia Eva, excitement began to build around town as the Cobb was dressed with props culminating with the filmset being covered with artificial snow on Saturday 9th October.
Oscar nominee Timothée Chalamet of Call Me By Your Name and Little Women fame will play Willy Wonka, the world’s most famous chocolatier following in the footsteps of Gene Wilder (1971's Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory) and Johnny Depp (2005's Charlie and the Chocolate Factory). Sally Hawkins, Olivia Colman, Matt Lucas and Rowan Atkinson will also star with Colman rumored to be portraying a villain.
The town has provided the scenic backdrop to several productions including Ammonite, starring Oscar-winner Kate Winslet and Saoirse Ronan, for the movie of Mary Anning.
Earlier this year, Dakota Johnson filmed scenes for a new adaption of Jane Austen’s Persuasion, a film that is predominately set in the town and Lyme was famously the setting of the Oscar-nominated 1981 movie The French Lieutenant's Woman starring Meryl Streep and Jeremy Irons.