Who Is Actress Calah Lane? What to Know About the ‘Wonka’ Star

Actress Calah Lane is making her big-screen debut alongside some of Hollywood’s biggest stars in the new movie musical Wonka.

“The holidays just got sweeter! 🍫 So grateful and so excited for this opportunity! 🙌🏽,” Lane wrote via Instagram in November 2021 after landing the role of Noodle in the Paul King–directed film. “And, blessed to get a chance to work with some incredibly talented actors, actresses and Director. God is truly amazing. 🙏🏼 #LetsGoooooo 🎬.”

Wonka, which hit theaters on Friday, December 15, tells the origin story of the famous fictional chocolatier, played here by Timothée Chalamet. The film also stars Hugh Grant, Olivia Colman, Rowan Atkinson, Sally Hawkins, Matt Lucas, Natasha Rothwell and Keegan-Michael Key.

Lane told Good Morning America in December 2023 that she had “so much fun” working with Chalamet and the rest of the cast, adding, “We did the ‘Thriller’ dance and [Timothée] came over for Thanksgiving. That was super fun.”

Keep scrolling for five things to know about Wonka’s Calah Lane:

1. Who Does Calah Lane Play in ‘Wonka?’

Lane portrays Noodle, an orphan who befriends Chalamet’s Willy Wonka and helps him on his quest to become a master chocolate maker. “She’s very observant, I would say. Very optimistic too. And she’s very strong,” Lane told Teen Vogue of her character in December 2023. “I like how confident she is. All she wants is a mom. But she’s been through so much that she knows that it can’t get any worse than this. So she’s just so confident and she does not care what anybody says. Like if anybody says anything bad about her, she would not care. That’s how confident she is.”

In the film, Paterson Joseph’s character, Slugworth, describes Noodle as the “brains” of Wonka’s operation. Lane, for her part, agrees with that observation. “The director said it feels like Willy’s the child and Noodle’s the mom,” she told the outlet. “She’s taking care of him and telling him what to do. I really see that a lot in the film.”

5 Things About Timothee Chalamet s Wonka Costar
Max Cisotti/Dave Benett/WireImage

2. Where Is Calah Lane From?

Lane grew up in Fort Worth, Texas, in a family full of talents. “My dad, he’s a DJ and he also plays some music of his own. My mom, she used to play the clarinet when she was younger,” she shared with Teen Vogue. “And then my nanna, my grandma, she loves to dance. She loves, like, salsa dancing. And then my grandpa, he’s just in love with music, like everything he plays and he just loves music so much. He’s always playing music wherever he goes.”

Lane often shares pics of herself with her family via Instagram. “Best place to be today is on the steps of the Dolby Theater with my sis @iamroselaneofficial and bro @officialmarklane!” she captioned a pic with her siblings on March 12.

Timmy s Wonka Press Tour Looks

Related: Timothee Chalamet’s Cool, Colorful and Charming ‘Wonka’ Press Tour Looks

Timothée Chalamet is showing off his vibrant side throughout the Wonka press tour. Chalamet — who plays Willy Wonka in the prequel movie — has wowed Us with his funky fashion at every Wonka premiere he attends. From reflective lilac suits to velvet ensembles, he consistently commanded attention on the red carpet. At the London […]

3. How Long Has Calah Lane Been Acting?

Lane got her big break playing Molly in a production of Annie, after which her mom was encouraged to get her into professional acting. “By the time I was, like, 8, we moved to California. And we’ve been here for five years, almost six years,” Lane told Teen Vogue.

She went on to appear in a number of short films and commercials and TV shows including Kidding, Hollywood, This Is Us, Family Reunion and Firebuds. Lane also showed off her singing chops on Jimmy Kimmel Live! in 2019, once as a child backup singer for Clairo and again as a member of a children’s choir in a sketch about the movie Cats.

5 Things About Timothee Chalamet s Wonka Costar

4. Has Calah Lane Won Any Awards?

Lane has received multiple accolades for her work over the years. She took home the prize for Best Young Actress in a Short Film at the Young Entertainer Awards in 2019 and landed on the 2021 Emmys Outstanding Guest Actress in a Drama Series nominations ballot for her performance as Young Laurel on This Is Us.

Lane’s role in Wonka also scored her a 2024 Critics Choice Awards nomination for Best Young Actor/Actress. “This is an amazing honor to be listed amongst so many talented young people! Thank you to the @criticschoice awards for acknowledging my performance and love for being an actress,” she wrote via Instagram in December 2023. “I am so grateful and excited!!! 🙌🏽🙌🏽🙌🏽⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️.”

5. What Have the ‘Wonka’ Cast and Crew Said About Calah Lane’s Performance?

“Calah Lane is wonderful, and she’s able to encapsulate this wise, ‘old head on young shoulders’ kind of character,” director King said of Lane’s performance in a July 2023 interview with GamesRadar. King also admitted to The Hollywood Reporter in December 2023 that his favorite musical sequence is Lane’s song “For a Moment.”

5 Things About Timothee Chalamet s Wonka Costar
Karwai Tang/WireImage

That same month, King shared that it was “really hard to find” the perfect person to play Noodle. “When we saw [Calah], my cowriter Simon [Farnaby] and I, we watched it [and were like], ‘I think she’s really good,’ and I played him a little clip on my phone,” he shared during an Entertainment Weekly roundtable interview with the cast. “[He goes], ‘Ah, she’s perfect,’ and that was just the end of it.”

Chalamet, for his part, told GMA that Lane “didn’t need any of my advice” when it came to acting in her first major movie. “She’s more of a natural than I am at this,” he added.

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