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SYFY WIRE Timothee Chalamet

Leonardo DiCaprio’s career advice for Timothée Chalamet: ’No hard drugs and no superhero movies’

Do leading roles in Dune & Wonka count?

By Benjamin Bullard
Timothee Chalamet

Timothée Chalamet seems to be doing all he can to skirt the very edges of a piece of acting advice from someone who knows the ropes. After first meeting Leonardo DiCaprio in 2018, the Dune star says he was told to steer clear of capes.

“No hard drugs and no superhero movies,” Chalamet recently shared with British Vogue, only weeks before he’s set to head to Budapest to get started on the second chapter of Denis Villeneuve’s Dune movie epic.

Dune: Part II is only one among a gauntlet of big leading gigs for the 26-year-old actor, who’s already turned internet heads for looking way more debonair in character as Willy Wonka than Gene Wilder’s iconic incarnation did in the original Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory. Chalamet is set to take up his predecessor’s mantle as the purple-clad chocolatier from the classic Roald Dahl books, starring in the musical origin story Wonka, due in theaters from Warner Bros. in December of next year.

In the same interview, Chalamet also revealed another new tuneful tidbit about the upcoming film, teasing he’ll appear in no fewer than seven musical numbers when Wonka unleashes its sweet stuff on audiences.

There’s been tons of buzz over the sex appeal Chalamet seems to be sprinkling onto Willy Wonka’s new look, helped along last fall when actor Ben Schwartz tweeted “In this one, Wonka f***s” alongside a shot of Chalamet in costume on the Wonka set. But Chalamet says the fantasy film isn’t aiming for impure allure at all.

Rather, he explained, Wonka’s shaping up as a “sincere” treatment of Dahl’s confectionery connoisseur. “You know what’s really funny about that is it’s so misleading,” he said. “This movie is so sincere, it’s so joyous.”

Joyous or not, Wonka marks Chalamet’s second upcoming appearance in a leading genre part that dives deep into sci-fi and fantasy territory without ever quite breaking one of DiCaprio’s early-career commandments: saying “no” to superhero roles. In addition to playing Willy Wonka, he’ll be back in Dune: Part II as Paul Atreides, leader of the noble family who strives to forge alliances on the desert planet Arrakis in author Frank Herbert’s original space-epic novel.

Both of those roles will put Chalamet back in front of audiences just in time for next year’s holidays. Dune: Part II is set to hit theaters on Nov. 17, 2023, with Wonka layering sincerely sweet singing on audiences the following month with its Dec. 15, 2023 premiere.

Looking for something fantastical? Click here for our list of the best fantasy films available on Peacock.