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The Wonka Experience in Glasgow has inspired an upcoming horror movie, but not the way you might think

'The Unknown' will terrorize a fictional family as much as it delighted the real internet... and terrorized a few real families

Image credit: X/Twitter

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It's being called this year's Fyre Festival - the unlicensed Willy Wonka event Willy's Chocolate Experience in Glasgow promised a theme park level of fun for families, only to provide essentially a post-hurricane Target with candy cane aesthetic. But the one great thing about it, agrees the internet, was its villain. Cheaply costumed and uncomprehensibly written, The Unknown still managed to send crying kids out of the experience in droves. And now, it'll have that chance again.

According to Bloody Disgusting, Scotland-based film production company Kaledonia Pictures is working on a horror movie about the much-memed monster.

But just what will The Unknown be about? According to Kaledonia, the movie focuses on a grieving couple, who "are haunted by the tragic death of their son, Charlie. Desperate to escape their grief, the couple leave the world behind for the remote Scottish Highlands – where an unknowable evil awaits them."

Now, if that hardly sounds anything like the story of Willy Wonka to you, don't worry - besides the disaster in Glasgow, the two have no connection. The Unknown was actually created by AI, just like the script the Wonka actors were given for the event. Moreover, AI was also used to create misleading art that got people into the Willy Wonka experience in the first place.

You kind of have to hand it to Kaledonia Pictures for really going deep in their serach for inspiration. The Unknown is a character created for an unsanctioned event, based on a movie, based on a book... and it's getting its own film. Imagine a full Star Wars movie based on a rejected droid created for the Rise of the Resistance ride at Disneyland, and you have a semblance of what's going on here.

It's perfectly natural to marvel at the layered nature of adapting this entity into a horror movie, but at the same time, one also has to wonder: at what point do you just create a new character?

The Unknown is aiming for a release date in late 2024.


While The Unknown was touring through Wonkaland, The Strangers showed up in Seattle.

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Grant DeArmitt

Contributing writer

Grant DeArmitt (he/him) likes horror, comics, and the unholy pairing of the two. He has written for Nightmare on Film Street and Newsarama, despite their better judgement. He lives in Brooklyn with his partner, Kelsey, and corgi, Legs.
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