In 1971, Willy Wonka & the Chocolate Factory was released. Peter Ostrum, the little boy who played the role of Charlie Bucket, was then thrust into stardom. The film was obviously a success as it became a cult classic for decades to come. However, Peter Ostrum left showbiz for good. He left Hollywood, and after Willy Wonka & the Chocolate Factory, he’s never been seen in another movie.
The 12-year-old child actor’s talent agents saw his potential to play the character of Charlie Bucket alongside his co-star, Gene Wilder. He admitted that playing the role of Charlie Bucket was a great experience. He liked making the movie, but he wanted a life on the farm. He abandoned the Hollywood life and moved back to his farm.
For many years, Peter was even hesitant to speak of his role in the movie. It wasn’t until he had children of his own that he started embracing the past. When he saw how they reacted to his role, he began to see his acting career as something he can be proud of.
Peter’s explanation was always the same when reporters, fans, and the media would ask why he hadn’t stayed in the filming industry. His response would always be “It really wasn’t for me.”
It was confusing for everyone to understand why Peter would easily give up a life as an actor when he did so great in the movie. His role as Charlie Bucket catapulted him to the limelight.
Today, Peter Ostrum is 59 years old, and he has seen how his life took a surprising turn since his days as a child actor. He didn’t regret anything. Now, he is living with a completely different – yet amazing – career.