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Willy Wonka Cast Reunite to Celebrate Movie’s 44th Anniversary

It has been 44 years since Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory premiered in theatres.

On Wednesday, six of the original castmembers appeared on Today to celebrate and share their memories from working on the film.


The group of five golden ticket winners and an Oompa Loompa have kept in touch, bound the iconic film.

“We think of ourselves as part of a family,” said Paris Themmen, who played Mike Teevee in the film. “Maybe a bit of a dysfunctional family, but a family really.”

“I’m sorry [the river wasn’t made of liquid chocolate]. It was water,” revealed Michael Bollner, who played the ever-ravenous Augustus Gloop.

“It was disgusting,” replied Goffe.

The group also reflected on the experience of working with the revered Gene Wilder.

“[There were] five kids clamoring all over, wanting attention. There was never any ‘Please, don’t bother Mr. Wilder.’ ” recalled Julie Dawn Cole (Veruca Salt). “And we must have been pretty tiresome.”

“They were,” whispered Goffe.

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