When Tony Award–profitable choreographer Christopher Gattelli first met Timothée Chalamet to show him faucet dance for Wonka, Chalamet’s hair was dyed a brilliant purple/purple as a result of he was in the course of filming the film Bones and All.
“It was a really enjoyable approach to meet him,” Gattelli (Newsies) tells Dance Spirit about their introduction. It was Might 2021. Filming was slated to start that fall. Warner Bros. Footage, which distributed the movie, now in theaters nationwide, had rented what Gattelli felt was the most important room at Open Jar Studios in New York Metropolis for less than the 2 of them. They’d an hour and a half and acquired proper all the way down to enterprise.
“I simply [showed] him primary [steps]. ‘This can be a shuffle.’ ‘This can be a flap.’ [I showed him how] to string them collectively to really feel how his weight modifications, to get in his bones the move of how steps comply with one another,” Gattelli says of their preliminary lesson.
From there, Gattelli continued to ship movies to Chalamet of latest steps and mixtures so he might maintain training whereas filming different tasks. In between takes, Chalamet would ship again proof he was doing his homework. In a press assertion, Chalamet mentioned of doing the work: “Repetition, repetition, repetition, repetition. It was sensible as a result of by the point the film began, the bodily stamina was there.”
“His development was actually, actually quick,” Gattelli boasts of Chalamet. The Name Me by Your Title actor performs a younger, twentysomething Willy Wonka in Wonka, an authentic prequel to the Roald Dahl youngsters’s novel Charlie & The Chocolate Manufacturing facility and the 1971 movie, Willy Wonka & The Chocolate Manufacturing facility, starring Gene Wilder.
Chalamet faucet dances on a desk, waltzes, and even does [aerial work] Flying by Foy all through the film. “He labored his butt off,” Gattelli says. “I’ve by no means labored with somebody along with his stardom who actually put within the work.”
For Gattelli, whose Broadway choreography credit embody a whopping 17 reveals, most not too long ago The Cher Present and SpongeBob SquarePants: The Musical, the job provide for choreographing Wonka got here from a love of his prior work on the 2016 Channing Tatum film, Hail, Caesar!, which options Tatum and an ensemble of tapping sailors within the quantity “No Dames” that pays homage to the Golden Age model of film musicals. The film can be the resumé credit score that helped him rating the gig for his choreography on Hulu’s Schmigadoon!, which earned him an Emmy nomination for his work on Season 2.
“[Wonka director] Paul King noticed Hail, Caesar! and mentioned, ‘I need whoever did that,’ ” Gattelli says of how he landed his greatest film credit score but, with lots of of dancers solid within the ensemble as townspeople. “He actually needed to seize the ’40s vibe. He actually needed it to have that genuine Nineteen Forties film musical high quality. Paul loves dance, particularly tapping.”
When you watch Wonka carefully, you’ll discover nods to the unique choreo, together with Wonka’s double kick down the steps in “Pure Creativeness,” and his fast step down and again up in “A Hatful of Desires,” one of many six authentic new songs by Neil Hannon. Gattelli says he primarily based a number of Wonka’s actions along with his signature high hat and cane primarily based on how Fred Astaire danced round with a high hat and cane, particularly in High Hat.
Ultimately, all of the early apply paid off. The movie options Chalamet doing intricate footwork, like a step shuffle pullback. “All of that was difficult for him, however he acquired it. I used to be thrilled. I used to be so happy with him,” Gattelli says. “He’s tapping up there with West Finish and Broadway performers, maintaining and doing it.”