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One is a beloved children’s movie. The other is a bloody post-apocalyptic sci fi film. Yet Gene Wilder in Willy Wonka & the Chocolate Factory and Chris Evans in Snowpiercer might have more in common than it seems. A fan theory explains how Bong Joon Ho’s 2013 movie is the long-lost sequel to Wilder’s wildly popular 1971 film.

Gene Wilder in 1971's 'Willy Wonka & the Chocolate Factory;' Chris Evans attends a 'Snowpiercer' press event in South Korea in 2013. A fan theory explains how 'Snowpiercer' is a sequel to 'Willy Wonka & the Chocolate Factory.'
(l-r) Gene Wilder as Willy Wonka; Chris Evans | Silver Screen Collection/Getty Images; The Chosunilbo JNS/Multi-Bits via Getty Images

‘Snowpiercer’ and ‘Willy Wonka & the Chocolate Factory’ couldn’t seem more different

Based on the French post-apocalyptic graphic novel Le Transperceneige by Jacques Lob, Jean-Marc Rochette, and Benjamin Legrand, Snowpiercer takes place in a dystopian 2031. A disastrous attempt to stop global warming has left Earth uninhabitable, forcing a small group of survivors to live on a train that circles the planet in a never-ending loop.

Tilda Swinton, Octavia Spencer, John Hurt, and Ed Harris star alongside Evans in the action-packed science fiction thriller. Evans’ character Curtis leads a group of passengers living in squalor in the back of the train toward the opulent front to encounter the engine’s creator, Wilford.

Willy Wonka follows five children touring Wonka’s secretive factory, which is filled with innovative candy-making equipment that is more dangerous than it appears. Calamities force four of the children to leave the tour group until the poor Charlie Bucket and his Grandpa Joe are the only ones left.

The Gene Wilder vs. Johnny Depp debate about who played the better Wonka keeps fans occupied. Now, Wonka lovers have another topic to discuss spurred by a fan theory.

Fan theory suggests ‘Snowpiercer’ is the follow-up to ‘Willy Wonka’

Snowpiercer and Willy Wonka & the Chocolate Factory couldn’t appear more different, but they share many similarities below the surface. At least enough to make the plausible case for Bong’s ultra-violent sci fi tale being a follow-up to a children’s classic, according to YouTube user Rhino Stew:

  • Both movies are about groups of people working their way through large and fantastical structures.
  • Members of each group eventually leave the group (by accident in Wonka and by death in Snowpiercer).
  • One person in each movie makes it to the end only to encounter a wealthy, eccentric person who explains the whole journey was a test to find a successor.

Furthermore, Rhino explains Ed Harris’ Wilford is the grown-up Charlie Bucket who took on a new moniker to honor Wonka before creating the train that saved humanity. And he would have had the means to do it in a self-sufficient chocolate factory rife with experimental vehicles.

Rhino Stew also posits that Hurt’s Gilliam in Snowpiercer is the older version of Willy Wonka’s spy Slugworth/Wilkinson, who, in both movies, knows about the succession plan the whole time.

Finally, the theory also explains how some of Charlie Bucket’s chocolate factory tourmates survived to live on the train and why no Oompa Loompas appear in Snowpiercer.

Below the surface, the SnowpiercerWilly Wonka & the Chocolate Factory fan theory makes some compelling arguments. What do movie fans think?

Fans react to the idea ‘Snowpiercer’ is a ‘Wonka’ sequel


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The fan theory connecting Snowpiercer to Willy Wonka & the Chocolate Factory connects several themes in both movies. Fan comments on Rhino Stew’s video praised the account for convincingly making the connection between dissimilar films.

“First of all: This is ridiculous. Second of all: This is genius,” one commenter replied.

“It’s ‘that piece of equipment went extinct’ that did it for me. It sounds like such a weird thing to say. Plus, in the context of a small crawl space, it just wraps it up nicely. I accept your proposal,” one reply read.

“You just blew my mind. I love the connections you make here. It all just about lines up. I don’t care if it’s true or not. For me, Snowpiercer is now the sequel to Willy Wonka. Thanks, dude, you’re awesome,” one user wrote.

“This was a lot more convincing than I thought it was going to be,” read another reply.

“It all makes sense, even in the parts that ‘seem like a stretch’ make sense. [I]t honestly feels like when you put a puzzle piece in a spot you wouldn’t think to fit and become pleasantly satisfied with it fitting,” a commenter wrote.

“Even the fact that the first movie is ‘for kids’ and the second is ‘for adults’ fits in this amazing theory!!” one person replied.

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