I remember back when I first watched Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory. (Of course, the Gene Wilder one. The Johnny Depp one just isn’t anywhere near the same and I’m still confused why anyone felt the need to remake perfection. ;) ) Willy Wonka was the first movie that: A) intrigued me, B) excited my imagination and, C) scared the heck out of me. (Seriously. Still, the thought of Slugworth appearing, and that entire tunnel scene just get me. *shudder* ) It was the first time a movie had ever felt magical to my young mind. Every part of it, from the beginning, to the very end, was perfect. Nowadays, seeing the Wonka brand on our candy still makes me smile. And, every time we set up a candy buffet we feel a little bit of that magic again. Ya know,we may be the smallest candy store in Minnesota, but our spirit still rivals the way we felt when the kids all walked into the candy garden for the first time. Do you remember that scene and the excitement that followed!? I remember being so envious and wishing I could go there too. Did you know the looks on the kids faces were genuine? They had never seen that set before! Since there is so much fun, Willy Wonka, trivia–we decided to dedicate this blog to it!
Check out some of our favorite Willy Wonka trivia below:
-The chocolate river was made of real chocolate, water, and cream. It spoiled fairly quickly and left a foul smell.
-When Willy Wonka (Gene Wilder) drinks from a flower-shaped cup and then eats the cup, the cup itself was made of wax. Gene Wilder had to chew the wax pieces until the end of the take, at which point he spat them out.
-In the “Candy Man” scene in the candy store, shortly after Bill dispenses the sodas from the soda fountain, he flips open a pass-through on the counter and it hits a little girl under the chin, knocking her head back.
-A number of the objects and plants in the Chocolate Room really were edible, including the giant lollipops. In the featurette Pure Imagination: The Story of ‘Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory’ (2001), Gene Wilder mentions that “about a third” of the stuff in the Chocolate Room was edible. However, the cup that Wilder took a bite out of at the end of the “Pure Imagination” song, was not actually edible.
-The opening credits sequence was filmed at a real (Tobler) chocolate factory in Switzerland.
-The film was originally financed by the Quaker Oats Company. They hoped to tie it to a new candy bar they intended to bring on the market. When the film was released, the company began marketing its “Wonka” chocolate bars. Unfortunately, an error in the chocolate formula caused the bars to melt too easily, even while on the shelf, and so they were taken off the market. Quaker sold the brand to St. Louis-based Sunline, Inc. (which later became part of Nestlé via Rowntree) not long after this; Sunline was able to make the brand a success, and Wonka-branded candy (most of which isn’t chocolate-based) is still available in the USA. Although the book this movie was based on was called ‘Charlie and the Chocolate Factory’, the movie was renamed to promote this candy tie-in.
-Most of the chocolate bars were actually made of wood.
-The scene in which Charlie is running home with the golden ticket was the first scene filmed.
-Julie Dawn Cole (Veruca Salt) hated chocolate.
-The filmmakers had to change the formula for the chocolate river because originally the concoction they were using turned blood red.
-While giving interviews as part of the 40th Anniversary celebration of the theatrical release, Denise Nickerson mentioned that, because of all the gum she had to chew as Violet, she ended up with 13 cavities. The reason is that, although sugarless gum WAS around in the early 1970s, the formula was a bit different than that of modern sugarless gums and didn’t make very good bubbles. So Denise was stuck chewing regular, sugared gum.
As always, give us a call if you’d like to special order some candy or set up a candy buffet for your event. And, definitely stop in when you’re in the area–we always love to see you!