Wonka director cast Timothée Chalamet after seeing his viral high school videos on YouTube

Timothée Chalamet in Wonka
(Image credit: Warner Bros.)

In light of the new Wonka trailer setting the internet alight, director Paul King has revealed that viral videos of Timothée Chalamet's high school performances helped him get cast in the all-singing, all-dancing movie. 

"Because he’s Timothée Chalamet and his life is so absurd, his high school musical performances are on YouTube and have hundreds of thousands of views," King told Rolling Stone. "So I knew from stanning for Timmy Chalamet that he could sing and dance really well. And I knew that was in his arsenal, but I didn’t know how good he was. When I spoke to him he was quite keen. He’d done tap dancing in high school and he was like, 'I’d quite like to show people I can do that.'"

One such video entails Chalamet, under the pseudonym 'Lil Timmy Tim', rapping a song called 'Jump' at his New York high school back in 2012 when he would have been 17 years old. Timmy Tim has some backing dancers in tow, and he also busts a few moves himself. The four-minute clip has been viewed 4.7 million times at the time of writing. 

In Wonka, Chalamet plays a younger version of the infamous chocolatier from Roald Dahl's Charlie and the Chocolate Factory as we join him on the journey from ordinary man to bestower of golden tickets. He's joined by a supporting cast that includes Sally Hawkins, Olivia Colman, Keegan-Michael Key, and Rowan Atkinson. 

Wonka is set to hit the big screen on December 15. For more on the movie, check out our own interview with writer-director King about the film's trailer. 

Entertainment Writer

I’m an Entertainment Writer here at GamesRadar+, covering everything film and TV-related across the Total Film and SFX sections. I help bring you all the latest news and also the occasional feature too. I’ve previously written for publications like HuffPost and i-D after getting my NCTJ Diploma in Multimedia Journalism.