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Pure Imagination: The Making of Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory Paperback – May 19, 2005
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From Publishers Weekly
Mel Stuart's 1971 film Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory has become a cult classic, equally enjoyed by children and adults. Fans of the film will delight in Stuart and Josh Young's Pure Imagination: The Making of Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory, a compendium of facts, photos and film stills concerning the movie Roger Ebert called "probably the best film of its sort since The Wizard of Oz." The authors explain the role Roald Dahl played in the film, who the candidates for the role of Willy Wonka were (besides Gene Wilder), how the whimsical set-from the chocolate river to Mike Teevee's TV room-was created, what went into Violet Beauregarde's blueberry costume and more. The Youngs also provide an intriguing look at special effects in the pre-Spielbergian early 1970s, an overview of critics' responses (Pauline Kael called it "stilted and frenetic, like Prussians at play") and a "where are they now" section (Peter Ostrum, who played Charlie Bucket, never again appeared in a feature film, while Julie Cole, who played Veruca Salt, developed a successful voice-over career).
Copyright 2002 Reed Business Information, Inc.
About the Author
Josh Young is a contributing writer for Entertainment Weekly and the co-author of You're Only As Good As Your Next One with film executive Mike Medavoy. He lives in Washington, D.C.
Top customer reviews
The book is based on the making of the movie "Willy Wonka and The Chocolate Factory".
Here is the low down on the book:
1) Contains color images from the production of the movie. Some are still images from the filming and some are photographs taken behind the scenes during production.
2) Don't expect a great deal of images or images that I would consider are unique from a behind the scenes perspective. They do however work well with the text of the chapters.
3) The book is written in a style that makes it a fairly easy read - Around 160 pages which are actually around 80 pages of what I would conside full text based on the layout.
4) The book only covers the making of the first movie in 1970 - released in 1971. The book was written around the time the new movie was being produced in 2002.
5) The book is written by the Director of the production, Mel Stuart, so it provides a unique insite into the creative process in a short and concise manner. Inter-weaving interesting facts through-out the story.
6) The book provides a brief history of the book and Roland Dahl the author.
7) The work concludes with a summary of what happened to the cast members as of the writing of the book.
I found the book to be an enjoyable and quick read - I would recommend it for anyone who is a fan of the movie, the book or simply the creative process involved in bringing a vision to the screen.
For those individuals who have not read the book - I recommend it -:
Charlie and the Chocolate Factory: (Penguin Classics Deluxe Edition)
After reading the book watch both the movie treatments on Blu-Ray:
Willy Wonka & the Chocolate Factory (Blu-ray Book Packaging)
Charlie and the Chocolate Factory [Blu-ray]
I recently purchased Pure Imagination through Amazon.com not only because I'm a huge Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory fan, but also because it was listed at a very nice price that I just couldn't pass up. This (hardcover to date) book is full of wonderful behind-the-scenes photos of the classic family movie that many fans had never seen before. There are tons of facts behind the making of the movie and surprises that will make you gasp or laugh out loud. For example, did you know that after shooting for the day, the Oompa Loopa's were quite the party animals at night! I knew it!
This book also shares the ideas and influences behind the breathtaking set designs, costuming, script, castings, music that made this wonderful family classic. What I most enjoyed, however, was the "Where Are They Now?" chapter that updates fans on the current careers and lives of the child stars of this movie who are now grown professionals. This book is a must have for true Willy Wonka fans and as you go through the glossy pages, you'll feel like a kid all over again.
The character of Willy Wonka, an eccentric, creative genius, reflects the above points and acts as the providential-like forcing factor against the exhibitionist, self-centered children and their morally inadequate parents. Mr. Wonka, in other words, and as part of his quest to find a deserving heir to his chocolate and candy kingdom, becomes the agent of both inspiration and punishment that the flawed children (and their equally defective parents) desperately need. Such punishments emanate from Mr. Wonka's impartial yet compassionate character.
In the end, Mr. Wonka and Charlie are the co-heroes of the story because both are basically good and unselfish, placing the legitimate needs of others ahead of their own. Moreover, both are primarily sensible and emotionally alert, and Charlie is entirely willing to show respect to rational adults and to learn from them. Charlie lives within limits and boundaries and sees them as good and warranted. He has little if any sense of entitlement, and that, combined with his spirit of imagination, makes him an ideal candidate for the position of Mr. Wonka’s apprentice (or perhaps even adopted son). When juxtaposed against the other children, Charlie is their “teachable” antonym.
Finally, Willy Wonka, himself, demonstrates to all concerned that self-discipline and integrity, when combined with "pure imagination," can generate excitement, fun, and joyful bliss. We expressively see that condition when the entire tour enters the Chocolate Room. One's creativity, in other words, can produce a magical, confectionary kingdom when combined with the aforementioned virtues. Willy Wonka teaches the Golden Ticket winners that there actually are pre-requisite conditions necessary for the development and successful implementation of one's imagination -- something especially important concerning the movement from adolescence to young adulthood, from the realm of child's play to the arena of serious study and/or work. That is a vital point lost entirely on the participants' parents with the possible exception of Grandpa Joe. Mr. Wonka is the embodiment of self-discipline, self-control, and hard work combined with genius-level inventiveness. His personality is so integrated, so amazingly efficacious (Gene Wilder was clearly born to play this role; he should have won an Oscar.), that he really is charismatically magical, yet only Charlie sees that truth. Wonka’s mysterious, Oompa Loompa-enriched, larger-than-life chocolate factory is the enduring proof that he knows who he is and what he is doing.
To use the language of modern day counseling psychology, Mr. Wonka performs throughout his extraordinary factory tour a characterlogical intervention of miraculous proportions. Charlie ends up the winner for all the right reasons, discovering an honorable path of lasting happiness and joy!
As Willy Wonka tells a perplexed, recalcitrant parent just before entering the Chocolate Room – the nerve center of the entire confectionary kingdom – “You can’t get out backwards. You have to go forward to go back.”
My son dressed up as Willy Wonka for school and then continued his love of this book and movie with a birthday party!! This book provided me with all of the necessary pictures and literature that I needed!!