Wonka Star Reveals Timothée Chalamet Needed To Be Convinced He Could Sing While Filming

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Written By Maya Cantina

Singing and dancing are very much part of the job description when you join a big-budget musical, but one Wonka star recently revealed that the Willy Wonka prequel’s leading man had to be “convinced” that he actually could sing during one of the movie’s big numbers. 

Young newcomer Calah Lane—who stars in the Wonka cast alongside household names like Timothée Chalamet, Hugh Grant and Olivia Colman—disclosed to Variety that Chalamet, who plays the titular chocolatier, was suffering from some imposter syndrome while performing “A World of Your Own,” off the movie’s soundtrack. The 14-year-old actress told the outlet: 

I really, really enjoyed Timmy’s ‘A World of Your Own’ song. His voice sounds really good in it. He keeps on telling me that he doesn’t think that he can sing, but I’m like, ‘Of course you can sing! Do you hear yourself?’ I told my sister, ‘I need to take Timmy and have him sit down and listen to himself,’ and then be like, ‘Now do you think you can sing?’ And if he says no, he’s gonna continue to listen to himself until he thinks he can sing.

Of course, Wonka director Paul King did his own due diligence in casting Chalamet in the musical role, even researching the movie star’s high-school dance videos to make sure that the Call Me by Your Name actor’s song-and-dance skills were up to snuff. (Chalamet attended New York City’s prestigious LaGuardia High School of Music & Art and Performing Arts—yes, the Fame school.)

As for Calah Lane, who plays Noodle (an orphan girl who becomes Willy’s assistant) in the film, the still school-age actress seemingly didn’t share any of her famous co-star’s anxieties or hesitations. Along with proclaiming how much she loved singing and dancing, the rising star told Variety that her future Hollywood goals include directing a movie one day, “like Paul”: 

I’d like to direct something and write something. That’s my ultimate goal. I love acting. I love singing. I love dancing. But I also like to try new things. I’ve written a lot of movies that I have not finished. I want to write and direct a movie. Like Paul.

Like herself, Lane also dubbed her character Noodle as “very confident,” telling the outlet: 

I think my favorite part of Noodle is how strong she is. She’s very, very strong. She doesn’t like to take ‘no”’ for an answer. She’s very confident, but she puts her guard up. And I feel like Willy really takes that heartfelt-ness that’s in her out in the movie.

She even dubbed Noodle “the heart of the movie”:

I love her. She adds a lot to the movie. She’s kind of like the brains of the operation. She’s the heart of the movie. That’s what my dad would always say. Which I do see!

And, just as Calah had praised his singing skills, Chalamet reciprocated the love, giving his then-12-year-old co-star some major props in People

She crushed it. I’m hugely proud of her. That’s a big thing to take on at 12 years old.

You can see for yourself if Lane is right and Chalamet’s singing really is up to par now that Wonka has officially been released on the 2023 movie schedule, having hit theaters stateside on Friday, December 15.

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