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Willy Wonka, Wilder or Depp? THE BURNING QUESTION!

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  • Willy Wonka, Wilder or Depp? THE BURNING QUESTION!

    Who, in your opinion, portays a better Wonka? Gene Wilder, or Johnny Depp?

    Here is my take:

    Johnny Depp is my favourite actor, everything he has done I have loved to pieces. However when it comes to Willy Wonka, I prefer Gene Wilder's performance. He played a much warmer character. And he played his Wonka more closely to the book (even though overall the new movie is closer to the book, aside from the ending) So Wilder gets my vote.
    47
    Gene Wilder
    68.09%
    32
    Johnny Depp
    31.91%
    15
    What an idiot....

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  • #2
    Re: Willy Wonka, Wilder or Depp? THE BURNING QUESTION!

    I love love loved Depp's performance, I didn't love the movie but I did love Depp's performance. I think it's kind of hard to choose between the two because they are almost like completely different characters. BUT if I had to choose I would choose Wilder's Wonka for the same reason as Tui, he was a warmer character.

    Overall, I like the original better, but that's just me



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    • #3
      Re: Willy Wonka, Wilder or Depp? THE BURNING QUESTION!

      Depp looking like Michael Jackson scares me. I voted for Wilder.
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      • #4
        Re: Willy Wonka, Wilder or Depp? THE BURNING QUESTION!

        I think Wilder was a better Wonka, although I definitely liked Depp as well. Wilder had that quirky, though innocent personality, while Depp was a little too mean spirited for the role. Also, I think the nostalgia value of Wilder helps him eke out over Depp.
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        • #5
          Re: Willy Wonka, Wilder or Depp? THE BURNING QUESTION!

          Wilder. I love Depp, but not as this character. He had his moments, but Gene owned the whole movie all the way through.
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          • #6
            Re: Willy Wonka, Wilder or Depp? THE BURNING QUESTION!

            Gene Wilder IS Wonka. And he sang!!! But how can you not love Johnny Depp?
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            • #7
              Re: Willy Wonka, Wilder or Depp? THE BURNING QUESTION!

              I would pick Wilder over Depp in a New York Minute...
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              • #8
                Re: Willy Wonka, Wilder or Depp? THE BURNING QUESTION!

                Originally posted by JesterMn
                Wilder. I love Depp, but not as this character. He had his moments, but Gene owned the whole movie all the way through.
                I love Depp, he was a great choice as Wonka a GREAT choice, but I still prefer Wilder. Wilder had it all, he could be creepy, loving, funny, angry, Everything. He explored the Wonka character so much more.
                What an idiot....

                Yeah, I do that Twitter thing.

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                • #9
                  Re: Willy Wonka, Wilder or Depp? THE BURNING QUESTION!

                  This is a REALLY tough choice. I mean, the original "Wonka" has stood the test of time. It is a classic in every way.

                  The new "Charlie" is awesome. I think I may like it as much, if not more than the original. But, as I mentioned in my review, the new movie is very appropriately titled "Charlie" and the Chocolate Factory. The story in the movie, as it is in the book, is about Charlie. Freddy Highmore was the star of the new movie.

                  Johnny Depp's performance was great. He's great in EVERYTHING he has done. Even something like Cry Baby, Depp's performance stands out above all else in the movie.

                  But, as good as Johnny was (is) in this movie, I still have to go with Wilder.

                  Again, I think the new movie might be better and more faithful to the book, but replacing Wilder as Wonka would be like, well, trying to replace Wilder in Blazing Saddles or Young Frankenstein. It simply cannot be done.

                  My vote has to go for Wilder.

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                  • #10
                    Re: Willy Wonka, Wilder or Depp? THE BURNING QUESTION!

                    Originally posted by Dustysage
                    Gene Wilder IS Wonka. And he sang!!! But how can you not love Johnny Depp?
                    Agreed. I go on record as saying that I did not like the original. But one cannot refute the place that the original has etched for itself in American cinema and the virtues that put it there.

                    Gene Wilder's Wonka was an iconic bit of acting that truly carried the film. He would be warm and then aloof in a split second. He handled that balance deftly and with sharp comic timing that the film's 'children's movie' trappings really didn't deserve. (the story behind the production was very cool too).

                    My problem with the original is it's tone. It couldn't really decide what it wanted to be. A heartwarming family musical, a fright house movie, a morality tale, or a campy children's movie.

                    I prefer, overall, the newer Charlie and the Chocolate factory for many reasons. Tim Burton's more loyal take on the story has a more cohesive feel to it becuase, as a voice in movies, Burton's films have mirrored the tone of many of Roald Dahl's books who, of course wrote the original story on which the film is based. It made perfect sense to have Burton do this movie.

                    It also made perfect sense to have the most brilliant character actor of our time, Johnny Depp, play one of literature's most eccentric characters. Depp's sociopathic take on Wonka may not have had the warmth of Wilder's portrayal but that was the journey this Wonka was taking. He was learning how to enjoy family again. This is what made the ending, for me, very, very fulfilling and ultimately better than the original. We got an epilogue this time and I loved it.

                    So who do I chose? Who is better? Dunno. That is a matter of opinion. I don't want to vote because really it's not for me to say. Both are great.
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                    • #11
                      Re: Willy Wonka, Wilder or Depp? THE BURNING QUESTION!

                      Tui, you're just trying to cause problems, aren't ya? However, anyone who has MST as their avatar (and sig) I have to forgive, and simply say "Watch out for snakes!"

                      Anyway, This is a hard, hard call, since they both played them so differently. It's like saying who is the better monster, Kong or Godzilla? or who is the better captain, Kirk or Picard? There's no "right" or "wrong" answer, because it's all based on taste. I loved Wilder in the original, and I love Depp in the remake, both for very different reasons. Wilder's Wonka was a bit off-kilter, but in more of a silly way, where Depp's Wonka is off in a way that makes you wonder if he planted those traps in the factory specifically to nail the children. There have been complaints about seeing the children leave the factory. I think Burton showed them leave so we knew they actually did. I wondered more than once if his instructions to the Oompas to take people to certain rooms was simply code for "make them disappear."! That was Depp's Wonka, and I loved it. The scene in the "meadow" when he tells all the children to go and eat, and Veruca's father stays for a moment and looks at Wonka, and Wonka looks at him with this creepy, manequin-esqe face until an uncomfortable-looking Mr. Salt walks away, causing Wonka to chuckle, is another perfect example.

                      Depp was silly and creepy. Wilder was silly and unsympathetic towards the children, but still much friendlier. For me, the choice between the two has to be what type of personality I personall enjoy most, so I have to go with creepy. Johnny wins, but not by much...
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                      • #12
                        Re: Willy Wonka, Wilder or Depp? THE BURNING QUESTION!

                        It's a perfectly valid question. It's not whose interpretation of a Star Trek Captain do you prefer, but whose interpretation of a particular literary and cinema character you prefer. That the two actors had wildly different interpretions is the point of the comparison, not the negation of the comparison.

                        With no disrespect to Depp, it's hands-down Wilder for me.

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                        • #13
                          Re: Willy Wonka, Wilder or Depp? THE BURNING QUESTION!

                          I was not a huge fan of the original. I was not raised watching TV or movies much at all and didn't see the original until I was older. It's a fine movie, but I just don't love it, or Wilder. His acting was good and he played a good character, but I don't feel the love.

                          Now I DID love the new version! I loved the style of the movie, I LOVED the dark humor and I LOVED Depp! His character entertained me more than Wilder's. His made me laugh out loud. I liked that he wasn't a warm character- he was dark, creepy, stand off-ish, qwerky and I loved him!

                          So I vote for Depp!
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                          • #14
                            Re: Willy Wonka, Wilder or Depp? THE BURNING QUESTION!

                            Aren't we sort of comparing apples to oranges here. Both characters were played very well, but they were played very differently. Except for the fact that they have the same name and both of them own a chocolate factory, they might as well be 2 totally different people.

                            Wilder was an excellent classic Wonka with a very warm kind almost fatherly feeling to him. I like everything that I have ever seen Wilder do.

                            Depp was a creepy misunderstood Wonka with a slightly twisted mind. I kind of like the creepy weirdness of the character. It was almost endearing in a strange sort of way. I also like everything that I have ever seen Depp do.

                            I just don't think that it's fair to compare the 2 and try to say that 1 was better than the other because of the huge gap between the 2 characters, but if you make me pick I will go with Depp because of the quirkiness of his interpretation. That being said, I am not trying to take anything away from Wilder. It is an extremely close race. (IMO)

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                            • #15
                              Re: Willy Wonka, Wilder or Depp? THE BURNING QUESTION!

                              Think of it like this... One movie was developed into a musical... the other was based more on the book and made to interest us... thus the two characters thought the same will be different...

                              this poll is entire on opinion.... and the movies are two different....

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