The remake of Charlie And The Chocolate Factory was thrown into chaos yesterday (14JUL04) when a worker dropped a $540,000 (GBP300,000) camera lens in a vat of chocolate.

The clumsy technician had failed to properly secure his wire-held camera, and watched aghast as it plunged into the three foot (0.91 metres) deep tank. According to insiders, the delay the incident caused could cost director TIM BURTON's project up to $900,000 (GBP500,000).

One source on the English set says, "When the camera fell it was like a slap-stick scene straight from the movie.

"A team of riggers had come in specially from the States to set it up over the vat of synthetic chocolate. But someone made a mistake and it wasn't secured properly.

"The production team didn't know whether to laugh or cry. The camera is probably beyond repair."

A film spokesperson adds, "Technical tests were being carried out to see how close the camera could be moved to the chocolate.

"A camera did go into the liquid owing to a mechanical fault."

Charlie And The Chocolate Factory is an adaptation of the best-selling Roald Dahl novel of the same name, which was first filmed in 1971 under the name WILLY WONKA AND THE CHOCOLATE FACTORY.

15/07/2004 09:24