A Lost Chapter From Roald Dahl’s “Charlie and the Chocolate Factory” Was Just Released

The chapter was removed after being deemed “too wild” and subversive

choc factory
Photo: polkadotted1

Roald Dahl's 1964 Charlie and the Chocolate Factory was an overnight success. Its first printing sold more than 10,000 copies in just a week, the Guardian reports. It has since been made into two motion pictures, and translated into more than 32 languages

The book so many children and adults came to love was quite a departure from Dahl's first pass at the manuscript, however. As his publisher noted, that first draft wasn't funny and lacked "light Dahlesque touches throughout," the Guardian writes. In that first pass, for example, Charlie winds up falling into a vat of chocolate and becoming a chocolate figurine, and children are more explicitly made into candy that is fed to other children. Dahl's original text also included a lost chapter, recently uncovered in the papers Dahl left after his death in 1990. As the Guardian writes, the chapter was cut after being "deemed too wild, subversive and insufficiently moral for the tender minds of British children." 

Now, Dahl fans can at last read that lost chapter, which the Guardian published online last weekend. The chapter describes the Vanilla Fudge Room, a place where naughty children are chopped up and pounded into fudge. The chapter also includes additional children characters who are touring the chocolate factory, two of whom wind up becoming victims of the fudge room's pounding machinery. As Dahl concludes in that lost chapter, "Eight little children – such charming little chicks. But two of them said 'Nuts to you,' and then there were six."

Get the latest stories in your inbox every weekday.