Taika Waititi to Direct Charlie & the Chocolate Factory Animated Series

Taika Waititi to Direct Netflix's Charlie & the Chocolate Factory Animated Series

Charlie & the Chocolate Factory: Taika Waititi to direct Netflix’s two new animated series

It has been over a year since Netflix had announced that they’re developing new animated series adaptations of award-winning author Roald Dahl’s iconic stories and characters, and now Deadline is bringing word that Academy Award winner Taika Waititi (Thor: Ragnarok, Jojo Rabbit) has officially signed on to direct two new original animated series which will be based on the 1964 novel Charlie and the Chocolate Factory, one of Dahl’s most recognizable works. The first series will center on the book’s famous characters including the eccentric Chocolate factory owner Willy Wonka, while the second one will be a fresh take on the Oompa-Loompas, the small humans from the Loompaland.

“I grew up reading Dahl stories and lived large parts of my young life in those magical worlds, so finding just the right creative partner to bring Willy Wonka, Charlie and the Oompa-Loompas to life in animation was a daunting task…until Taika walked into the room. Then, it was really obvious. If Dahl had created a character of a filmmaker to adapt his work, I’m pretty sure he would have created Taika,” Netflix Vice President of Original Animation, Melissa Cobb said in a statement.

“In the words of Willy Wonka himself – we are ‘Delighted! Charmed! Overjoyed!’ with Taika’s appointment on this project.” Commercial and Entertainment Director of Roald Dahl Story Company Gideon Simeloff said. “There is something undeniably Wonka-esque about Taika’s creative flair and inimitable sense of humor and we cannot think of anyone more perfectly suited to leading the creative charge on these first of their kind, feature quality Netflix shows.” 

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Charlie and the Chocalate Factory has been adapted into two films including Tim Burton’s 2005 film of the same name which was led by Golden Globe nominee Freddie Highmore and Oscar nominee Johnny Depp, who portrayed the roles of Charlie Bucket and Willy Wonka. Waititi paid homage to the 1971 classic Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory with this scene from Thor: Ragnarok

Roald Dahl stories have long inspired award-winning feature films and stage productions. But now, for the first time, Netflix in partnership with The Roald Dahl Story Company will bring together the highest quality creative, visual, and writing teams to extend the stories in this first-of-its-kind slate of premium animated event series and specials for audiences of all ages and for families to enjoy together. Netflix intends to remain faithful to the quintessential spirit and tone of Dahl while also building out an imaginative story universe that expands far beyond the pages of the books themselves.

The list of titles in the agreement between Netflix and the Roald Dahl Story Company includes Charlie and the Chocolate Factory, Matilda, The BFG, The Twits, Charlie and the Great Glass Elevator, George’s Marvellous Medicine, Boy — Tales of Childhood, Going Solo, The Enormous Crocodile, The Giraffe and the Pelly and Me, Henry Sugar, Billy and the Minpins, The Magic Finger, Esio Trot, Dirty Beasts, and Rhyme Stew.

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The two animated shows will be added to the growing slate of Taika Waititi’s ongoing projects which includes: sci-fi comedy film Free Guy opposite Ryan Reynolds; James Gunn’s The Suicide Squad; Marvel Studios’ highly-anticipated Thor: Love and Thunder; the sports drama Next Goal Wins starring Elisabeth Moss and Michael Fassbender; sci-fi thriller series Night Raiders;FX’s Reservation Dogs series; and Showtime’s The Auteur.

(Photo Credit: Getty Images)