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AND THE WORLD TASTES GOOD...
Happy Halloween, everyone! With thoughts of candy inevitably on everybody's minds, there's no better time to take a closer look at some of the delectable treats from that oh-so-mysterious candyman extraordinaire, Willy Wonka!
Willy Wonka & the Chocolate Factory is one of the most mouth-watering movies ever made, full of delicious candies that you just wish you could pull right out of the screen and into your mouth (not unlike Wonkavision)! When designing this project, I knew I had to design many of these treats within the world of LEGO in order to convey that delectable atmosphere of Wonka's factory. In this update, I intend to cover some of my favorites among these sweets. Some are accessories, some are part of the build, but all of them are scrumdiddlyumptious.
- Wonka Bar - The most famous of all of Wonka's confections, the Wonka Bar takes the world by storm when Willy Wonka announces his Golden Ticket competition. The bar is made exclusively from Willy Wonka's signature solid milk chocolate, though the props used for filming were actually made from wood! The LEGO bar comes as a printed 1x2 tile, and the set includes six of them - one for each of the five children to find their Golden Ticket within, and one for Mr. Wonka himself.
- Scrumdiddlyumptious Bar - The Scrumdiddlyumptious bar is the newest Wonka product on candy shop shelves, and it's already one of his best yet! This exceptional bar contains pieces of toffee, cookies, and peanuts, and is a favorite of Charlie Bucket's. Two Wonka Scrumdiddlyumptious bars are included in this project, as decorated 1x3 tiles.
- Fudge Mallow Delight - No one quite knows for sure the ingredients of Wonka's Fudge Mallow Delight, but from the name one can be reasonably sure that inside the wrapper is a candy featuring both fudge and marshmallows. One thing that definitely won't be inside the wrapper, though, is a Golden Ticket, as Charlie and Grandpa Joe are disappointed to find out. A single Fudge Mallow Delight is featured in this set, as a decorated 2x2 tile.
- Everlasting Gobstopper - Willy Wonka is hard at work developing the Everlasting Gobstopper, a revolutionary candy which he's sure will be the one to finally sizzle old Slugworth. While they are produced by a complicated machine, the LEGO gobstoppers are actually quite simple, represented by a pair of 1x1 plates attached at 45° angles to one another. The project includes four: One for Veruca, one for Violet, one for Mike... and one for Charlie. After all, one is enough for anybody.
- Golden Chocolate Egg - Wonka's quadruple-size geese lay octuple-size eggs - golden chocolate eggs, to be precise. However, LEGO's standard egg pieces are big enough in proportion to a minifigure to perfectly represent the large size of the golden chocolate eggs. They come with a metallic gold finish, and two are included - one good egg to be polished by an Oompa Loompa, and one bad egg to be coveted by fellow bad egg Veruca Salt.
- Fizzy Lifting Drink - Wonka's Fizzy Lifting Drinks are still in development, and currently unsafe for human consumption. When Charlie and Grandpa Joe each sneak a swig during the tour, they find out why that is when they start floating towards a dangerous fan! The set includes a single hidden bottle of Fizzy Lifting Drink included behind the Chocolate Room as an Easter egg.
- Luminous Lollipop - Wonka's Luminous Lollipops can be found all around the Chocolate Room, just waiting to be plucked out of the ground and enjoyed. They are built from a 2x2 round tile and a white signal paddle, and come in four colors: vibrant coral (pictured), orange, red, and yellow.
- Giant Gummy Bear - Another treat to be found in the Chocolate Room is this giant gummy bear, which is enjoyed by Violet Beauregarde. In LEGO form it is actually represented by a LEGO teddy bear in bright light yellow - not a new color, but without printing for the very first time.
- Chocolate Drop Candies - During the opening titles of Willy Wonka & the Chocolate Factory, the audience has the privilege of watching chocolate candies be made in a real chocolate factory. Among the confections is a tray of hundreds of chocolate drop candies ("kisses"). However, if you look closely, one of the candies was made with a broken-in tip. When I was a kid I loved watching the opening and hunting for that broken kiss, so when I set out to make this project I knew I would have to include that detail. Indeed, among the many candies included in the case of Wonka sweets outside the factory is a 2x3 tray containing half a dozen chocolate drops, and, true to the movie, the one in the back left has a broken tip.
Of course, those are hardly all of the candies featured in this project, but are just some of the ones I wanted to give a special spotlight to. Some of the others include the candy flower teacups (featured in the previous update), the peppermint plants and large hard candies in the Chocolate Room, and of course the iconic Chocolate Waterfall.
Thank you for reading this update and supporting this project. Before I go, if you haven't heard, LEGO Ideas just recently released the results for the first 2022 review, and made history by approving an astonishing four projects to be made into official LEGO sets. Massive congratulations to @hachiroku24 (LEGO Insects), @LEt.sGO (The Orient Express, a Legendary Train), @john_carter (Tales of the Space Age), and @Minibrick Productions (Polaroid Onestep SX-70) - if you recall, that last project actually reached 10,000 supporters on the same day the Willy Wonka & the Chocolate Factory project reached 500! How time flies...
MINIFIGURE SPOTLIGHT: MR. WILLY WONKA
"A little nonsense now and then is relished by the wisest men~"
When it came to designing the minifigures for this project, my primary concern was with Willy Wonka himself. As the namesake of both the story and set, and beyond that a very iconic character portrayed by a brilliant actor, getting this figure right was paramount. As such, Mr. Wonka is the most detailed figure in the set - he features a total of five new LEGO parts (not counting accessories), with multiple new colors for parts and printing on nine surfaces. With the project several months into its journey to 10,000 supporters, I felt the time was right to begin showing a deeper look into the finer details of this project, and I felt there was no better place to start than with an in-depth look at such an iconic character transposed into LEGO form. Ready? Yes? On we go!
When it came time to bring this minifigure to life, without question the most important task was designing a face print that faithfully captures the appearance of actor Gene Wilder. The single-sided head depicts Wonka with a knowing smile and cocked brow, with the lines of Wilder's face detailed in medium nougat. This contrasts nicely with Wonka's eyebrows, which are printed in LEGO's standard nougat tone. This is the same color as Wonka's hair, an element originally introduced for fellow eccentric inventor Doc Brown. Also included is Wonka's iconic top hat, using the classic LEGO minifigure top hat in reddish brown for the very first time and with a gold ribbon printed around the base.
Wonka features a dark purple torso printed with the designs of his iconic costume. This includes his large bow tie (printed with metallic gold), his flowery vest, and the various details and edges of his suit jacket outlined in magenta. This magenta lining continues down through Wonka's hip piece onto the fronts and sides of his upper legs, creating a clean and cohesive look. The legs are dual-molded with dark purple tops and dark tan bottoms, meaning that the purple coat is continuous around all sides of the figure. The dark tan lower legs simply represent Wonka's pants, with a matching dark tan color printed up the center of the upper legs and hips to complete the design.
In terms of accessories, Wonka comes holding a 3-long bar in medium brown to represent the cane he used during his iconic entrance and throughout the film, as well as a white 1x1 fez element to act as a hat stand when he is equipped with his hair. Wonka's final accessory is included as part of the Chocolate Room model, and I would hazard to call it the most special and splendiferous of them all. Included is a build for the teacup flower bush from the Pure Imagination number, and it features 3 candy teacups - the standard LEGO teacup element, but cast for the first time in LEGO's bright light yellow color.
I hope you enjoyed this in-depth look at the most detailed minifigure from the proposed LEGO Willy Wonka & the Chocolate Factory set. If you did, you're in luck, as I plan on releasing new updates regularly to cover all the details of this project, from minifigures to design choices to building techniques. If you enjoyed this update, please share the project and comment with your favorite Wonka quote - mine's written at the top of this update! Thank you so much for your continued support, and I hope you'll check back in soon for more scrumdiddlyumptious delights.
MIXING 2,000 GALLONS AN HOUR
...It would be mixing more, but some greedy nincompoop is blocking the pipe!
That's right, to celebrate this project reaching 2,000 supporters I've designed an addition to the project, that addition being the chocolate-pumping pipe that Augustus Gloop famously gets stuck in after falling into the Chocolate River. This is a detail I had originally planned to include within the Chocolate Room interior, but ultimately omitted from the base pitch as it would take up space needed for the Chocolate Waterfall. After some extra time at the drawing board I have built this design for the pipe, which rather than going in the interior instead connects with the Chocolate Room via a newly-added clip connection (see below). The pipe is built from about 50 LEGO elements and can hold an Augustus Gloop minifigure stuck inside.
Speaking of young Herr Gloop, to go with this addition I have created an alternate torso decoration for him with gloopy liquid chocolate staining his jacket, which makes for a much more authentic look when he is stuck up in the pipe. Unlike the Blueberry Violet Beauregarde model I showed off at 500 supporters, which would be included alongside her standard minifigure, this chocolatey torso is presented as an alternate - the set would include either the clean torso (shown in the original pitch) OR the variant presented in this update. I quite like both designs, but feel free to comment below with your preference!
That's all for this update, but before I go I'd just like to thank all of you for helping this project to reach 2,000 supporters. It's incredibly humbling to know that so many people like and support a project that I designed, and I am confident that with all of your continued support we can reach full support at 10,000 and see this set be officially released as a LEGO Ideas product. Please remember to share this project using #legowillywonka to drum up further support, and continue to check back in for updates, which I will be posting more regularly to discuss further details and logistics of the project. Unlike poor Augustus Gloop, I know that, together, we can go far!
BREAKING NEWS FROM SCRANTON, PA
That's it, that's it, it's all over! The Wonka contest is all over! The fifth and final ticket has been found, and we've got a live report coming in directly now from Scranton, Pennsylvania!
A couple of days ago LEGO revealed the next upcoming LEGO Ideas kit, 21336 The Office. Based on the iconic NBC mockumentary sitcom, this model faithfully captures the original series with a fully accurate layout, a jaw-dropping 15 minifigures, and tons of easter eggs referencing iconic episodes, one of which is the subject of this update. It would seem that Mr. Wonka's reputation has preceded his official LEGO appearance, as 21336 seems to include a decorated 2x2 tile representing a Dunder Mifflin Golden Ticket!
For those who don't recall. one episode of The Office's fifth season has regional manager Michael Scott, inspired by Willy Wonka & the Chocolate Factory, place 5 Golden Tickets into ordinary shipments of Dunder Mifflin paper, the lucky winner getting a discount of 10% on their next shipment. Unfortunately for Michael he accidentally sent all five Tickets to the same high-profile client, and hijinks ensue. While Michael's idea may not have been a winner, this LEGO Ideas set certainly is! The Ideas design team knocked it out of the park with this one, creating a set that's a sure bestseller and an instant classic, and I offer my heartfelt congratulations to fan designer Jaijai Lewis @Lego The Office for the great achievement of getting his set produced!
For those worried about how this might affect the chances of this Willy Wonka & the Chocolate Factory project getting approved, I wouldn't think on it too much. The original episode's use of the Golden Tickets and other concepts were parody and thus protected under fair use without officially licensing the Wonka name or brand, and as such LEGO including a The Office Golden Ticket in this set would similarly not be licensed as Willy Wonka, only as The Office. All this means is that perhaps at least one person on the LEGO Ideas team is a Wonka fan of the likes of Dwight Schrute, which can only be a good thing for the prospects of this project.
In other news, LEGO Ideas just revealed the results of the Third 2022 Review, and they've greenlit the "Hocus Pocus - The Sanderson Sister's Cottage - Updated" submission to become an official LEGO Ideas set. Congratulations to fan designer Amber Veyt @TheAmbrinator for this amazing accomplishment - your determination definitely paid off!
PRINTS VS. STICKERS, PLUS A TEASER...
When it comes to designing a LEGO set concept that could realistically be produced as an official product, it's very important to keep an overall budget for the set in mind. Aside from the total number of LEGO pieces included, I found the most important part of budgeting to be determining the nature of the set's decorated elements.
As LEGO's different products go, LEGO Ideas sets are renowned by fans for their consistent inclusion of various high-quality printed elements in every set. When the theme first began, all LEGO Ideas/Cuusoo sets had all decorated elements be printed - no stickers whatsoever. However, a result of this was that there would be only a handful of new decorations in each set. More recently, some Ideas sets have begun including a mix of printed elements alongside elements to which the builder applies stickers, maintaining the first-class feel of the Ideas line whilst allowing designers to include a greater variety of new decorations without greatly increasing the budget and cost.
With this model, I sought the latter approach, with several uniquely printed elements being included alongside a sheet of decals for further decoration. I analyzed the full lifespan of the LEGO Ideas theme and came up with three major reasons a decorated element will be realized via a print rather than a sticker, those reasons being:
- Iconicity - A constant feature of LEGO Ideas sets is that, if a specific detail is extremely iconic to the license or concept the set is based on, that element will be printed. Examples of this include the license plates and flux capacitor in 21103 The Delorean Time Machine, the street sign tiles in 21324 Sesame Street, and many more decorated elements from throughout the history of LEGO Ideas.
- Recurrency - If a model requires a given decorated element to appear in abundance, that decoration will typically be printed so as to streamline the building experience by not forcing the builder to repeatedly apply the same sticker. This was the case in 21331 Sonic the Hedgehog - Green Hill Zone with the 1x4 pixelated grass tile, 10 of which are used in the set.
- Necessity - In some cases, a print will be used because a sticker would simply not be an option for a specific element, as it would be too difficult to apply or break LEGO's internal ruleset. Examples of this include printing on elements with multiple axes of curvature such as the stars printed on 3x3 and 4x4 dish pieces in 21333 Vincent Van Gogh - The Starry Night, printing on very small elements such as the 1x1 round hunny-bee tiles in 21326 Winnie the Pooh, and printing on elements where the decoration would need to reach multiple edges of the piece such as with the fretboard tiles in 21329 Fender Stratocaster (LEGO stickers are required to have smaller dimensions than the element faces they are meant to be placed on, to give leeway to builders).
With these points in mind, I created five unique printed LEGO elements to be used in this build, which are as follows:
- Tile 1x2 with Groove with "Wonka Bar" Pattern x6 (#1, #2, #3: The props are incredibly iconic, printed on small 1x2 tiles, and are included in abundance.)
- Tile 1x2 with Groove with "'Wonka's Golden Ticket' with Border" Pattern x5 (#1, #2, #3: See Above)
- Tile 2x6 with "Chocolate Waterfall" Pattern x9 (#2: The waterfall features nine of these prints, which are necessary for texture.)
- Panel 1x2x2 - Hollow Studs with "Spoked Circular Window on Medium Nougat Background" Pattern x2 (#3: Since the medium nougat background needs to reach all four edges of the panel, a sticker would not suffice; this choice of print has been used in the past for the portholes in LEGO Spongebob Squarepants sets.)
- Tile 8x16 with Bottom Tubes with "'Wonka's Golden Ticket' without Border" Pattern x1 (#1: With the life-size Golden Ticket being included to add a collectible, "exclusive" feel to the set, printing the piece is imperative to that end.)
These five elements are in addition to all of the new decorations for the set's seven minifigures (one headgear, five heads, seven torsos, one legs), all of which are of course also printed. The remaining decorations on the model would utilize stickers, as shown on the mockup sticker sheet above. These stickered elements would include:
- Tile 1x3 with "Wonka Scrumdiddlyumptious Bar" Sticker x2
- Tile 2x2 with Groove with "Wonka Fudge Mallow" Sticker
- Tile, Modified 4x4 with Studs on Edge with "Wonka Contract" Sticker
- Tile 2x6 with "'Wonka' Signage" Sticker
- Tile 2x6 with "Wonka Entrance Door, Right" Sticker
- Tile 2x6 with "Wonka Entrance Door, Left" Sticker
- Panel 1x6x5 with "Wonka Psychedelic Tunnel" Sticker
- Panel 1x6x3 with Studs on Sides with "'Wonka'" Sticker
While this collection of prints vs. stickers certainly isn't concrete (the final model could have a different set of decorated elements, or have more of them be printed/stickered than I chose), this is essentially a set of guidelines for what I believe would be the best selection for a maximally-enjoyable building experience and a very high quality feel to the set, while remaining fairly in line with the number of new decorated elements included in other recent LEGO Ideas kits of similar size.
That essentially concludes all I have to say on that particular subject in regards to this project (or at least all I have to say without greatly exceeding the character limit for update posts). I know that it's been a while since the last update, so I wanted to get a bit more into the nitty-gritty with this one. That said, I'm already well into working on the next update, which, much like the 500 supporters update, will introduce a brand-new build to the project! I'll be releasing that update as soon as the project reaches 2,000 supporters, so if everyone who sees this supports and shares the project you could very well see the next update very soon! Until then...
The suspense is terrible... I hope it'll last.
1250 SUPPORTERS + FAQ
When I first submitted this project to LEGO Ideas, my hope was to reach the 100 supporters milestone within the first month. Instead, thanks to all of you we blew past that on the very first day. Now, that full first month later, not only are we well past 1000 supporters - thank you for the extra 182 days - but we now stand as the most highly-supported Willy Wonka & the Chocolate Factory project currently on the LEGO Ideas platform, and #2 in site history! We're over 12.5% of the way there, so let's keep pushing to make this golden dream come true!
With how far we've come, I figured I should sit down and answer some questions regarding this project. Some I've been seeing a lot, others I've seen only a couple of times but still find important to answer. Ready? Yes? On we go!
**Frequently Asked Questions**
Wow, this set is really cool! Is it real? Where can I buy it?
Thanks! Unfortunately, this set isn't real quite yet - LEGO Ideas is a platform which allows people to submit a concept for the chance to have it turned into a real LEGO set. This will only happen if the set garners 10,000 votes of support, so if you want to see Willy Wonka & the Chocolate Factory in LEGO be sure to click the blue "support" button and share the project around to get the word out!
How much will the set cost if/when it is officially released?
I designed this set to be at a similar size and piece count to two recent LEGO Ideas sets that are also based on classic children's properties: 21324 Sesame Street and 21326 Winnie the Pooh. As such, you could expect this set to have a similar retail price to those sets. In addition to fitting precedent, I think this size also strikes a great balance between not being too prohibitively expensive while still being large enough to fit in lots of details and space for all of the minifigures.
What age range is this set designed for?
All recent LEGO Ideas sets have been released under LEGO's "18+" banner, so presumably this set would also be marketed with adults in mind. However, even with that age label I know many younger kids would want a LEGO Willy Wonka set, so I designed the model to be accessible to kids in terms of complexity - probably about 10+ by LEGO's system. Really, much like the movie it's based on, I see this set as being for Wonkerers of all ages.
There have been many other adaptations of the Willy Wonka story, including multiple stage musicals and a second movie (with a third on the way). Why is the set focused on this particular iteration of the story?
While there are several Willy Wonka adaptations, I believe this is by far the most influential and the most iconic, and as such if LEGO were ever to make a set based on the story it would be on this specific iteration. In addition, this is by far my favorite version of the story (it's one of my favorite movies, period), so there was never any doubt in my mind on which version to base this project.
That said, while this set has no relation to the upcoming 2023 Wonka movie, that doesn't harm this project's chances of being made. In fact, there is recent precedent for LEGO Ideas sets on older properties being selected to coincide with new entries or adaptations, such as 21330 Home Alone being made to coincide with the Home Sweet Home Alone movie, or 21331 Sonic the Hedgehog - Green Hill Zone releasing to tie in with the upcoming Sonic the Hedgehog 2 movie. The same could very well happen with this Willy Wonka & the Chocolate Factory project being released along with the Wonka hype. That movie does seem to be trying to capitalize on nostalgia for this original version, so this set would fit right in.
You've announced plans to create additional concepts related to the project through the update system, and have already created an additional figure. Will these concepts be in the set if/when it reaches 10K supporters?
The short answer to this question is that it's not entirely in my hands. Ultimately, if LEGO chooses to produce this set it will be up to their design team what will be included in this set and in what way. I designed the base pitch to stand on its own as a complete and satisfying set, and LEGO could very well produce a set nigh-identical to the base pitch. However, if they decide to go in a different direction with certain parts of the set, the additional update concepts are designed to give my take on other iconic builds from the film that could be included.
Where's Grandpa Joe?
While Grandpa Joe is a major character in the film overall, he doesn't serve a major role in the specific scenes featured in this set. As such, I felt as though the set could stand without him. In addition, as of writing this no LEGO Ideas set has ever included more than seven minifigures, and if the set included Grandpa Joe we would be exceeding that number. On the bright side, while Joe isn't included, there are two Easter egg references to his character included in the set - see if you can find them!
Is Willy Wonka's hat and hair all one piece, or are they two separate pieces?
Two separate pieces. LEGO Ideas site rules dictate that project submissions cannot include brand new LEGO part molds, and as such there was little choice in this matter. The majority of renders show Wonka with just one or the other (I'm quite partial to just the hairpiece), though in the couple that feature both pieces stacked on his head that choice was made simply to show that both parts are included.
Thank you for reading this far! I hope this has answered some questions you may have had regarding this project (and, if not, that it at least made for interesting reading). For the next update I plan to discuss the set's decorated parts: which would definitely be printed, which would have to be stickered, and which could go either way (with my opinion). After that, though, comes another additional concept to add to the project! Thank you all for supporting, and if you haven't already please remember to share to keep the support coming!
500 SUPPORTERS + UPDATE
It has been one week since I submitted this project to LEGO Ideas. I had been designing and refining this project for months beforehand and when it finally came time to submit, while I may have had high hopes, I was sure to keep my expectations in check.
And not only did you all smash my expectations, you've helped this project to soar far above my highest hopes.
As of this update being posted, we have just reached 500 supporters on this project. 500 people, all within 7 days, who have supported and want to have a set that I designed. That is incredible. In addition, we are currently #30 on the list of the most popular projects on LEGO Ideas. To put it simply, thanks to all of you this project is blowing up! Like a balloon! Or, like a blueberry..?
That's right! I promised I'd be adding an additional concept to this project when we hit 500 supporters, and so I present to you this alternate figure of Miss Violet Beauregarde, after she's foolishly stolen Wonka's three-course-dinner gum and swelled up into a plump blueberry, ripe for juicing. Her spherical form is built from about 25 LEGO elements, and she is indeed round enough to be rolled around by an Oompa Loompa. While this figure is from later in the movie than what is portrayed in the rest of the set, this is definitely Violet's most iconic scene in the film and would serve as a nice complement to her standard minifigure.
(Keep in mind that this and all other additional concepts added through the updates are not meant to be definite additions to the main project; rather, they are meant as suggestions of potential additions in the event that LEGO elects to produce this project as an official set.)
If you like this update I have several more planned, so keep sharing this project to get the word out! For the next update I plan on posting an FAQ for this project, so if you have any questions to ask regarding this Ideas project feel free to comment them below!
Finally, I'd like to congratulate @Minibrick Productions and @Jiwoo, two LEGO fans whose projects (Polaroid Onestep SX-70 and The Opera, respectively) have recently reached 10,000 supporters. Best of luck to both in the review period!
I am in awe.
I submitted this project not even 2 1/2 days ago, and we've already reached 250 supporters. That's an average of 100 supporters a day. To put it another way, this is the 42nd-fastest growing project on LEGO Ideas, out of 3197 projects currently active on the site. #42, out of over 3000. All because of everyone who has supported and shared this project. That is insane, and that is humbling. If we can all keep this momentum going, we should have absolutely no problem reaching 10K with time to spare. Just keep sharing this project online and with friends and family to make sure that happens!
Also, keep in mind that at 500 supporters I'm unveiling an update featuring the first additional concept for this project. So, the quicker we continue to garner support, the quicker you all get to see the next update!
Finally, earlier today LEGO announced the Second 2021 LEGO Ideas Review Results, and they have selected two projects from the review to be fully realized as official LEGO sets. I'd like to wish a massive congratulations to @Norton74, fan designer of the "A-Frame Cabin" project, and to both @BangtanBricksand @JBBrickFanatic, fan designers of the "BTS' Dynamite" project! It is a huge honor to have your projects selected by LEGO for official production, and you all definitely deserve it!
While it might be but 1% of the total amount needed to get the project put into review, it cannot be understated how much of an accomplishment it is just to get a project to 100 supporters within the 60 day limit.
And yet, we just did it in less than 16 hours.
I cannot thank all of you enough for supporting this project on the very first day, absolutely obliterating my expectations of how long it would take. While it happened so quickly I didn't have time to make up anything major, please accept this picture of Wonka and Charlie as a "Thank You".
That said, if you want to continue to help this project grow please be sure to share and get the word out- it's the best way we can ensure that we continue steady on the path to 10K. Before that, when we reach 500 supporters I'll be ready to unveil the first true update to this project, so let's keep going at a good rate to reach that goal as soon as possible.
We may still be a long way away from getting that Golden Ticket, but nonetheless this has certainly still been a golden day.