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Charlie And Violet On 'Chocolate'

The new Tim Burton fantasy, "Charlie and The Chocolate Factory," is a retelling of the classic Willie Wonka tale, in which five lucky children find golden tickets that allow them entrance to a magical Chocolate Factory.

Starring as Charlie is Freddie Highmore. In an appearnce on The Early Show, he describes his character as a boy who has very little but the most important thing - love.

"He has a great family that surrounds him with love," Highmore says of Charlie. "That's what separates him from Willie. Willie has everything, but the one thing he really wants is the love of his family."

Johnny Depp plays Willie and this is second time he and Highmore have shared the screen. The first time was in 2004 in the acclaimed drama, "Finding Neverland."

"Every scene with him is so special," Highmore says about Depp. "He's my idol. He's better than chocolate. I keep telling everyone that chocolate is fantastic and that he is fantastic, but he really is better than chocolate, so I have to think of a stronger word for him." Interestingly, they both share the same birthday: June 9, only Highmore was born in England in 1992. Depp was born in Kentucky in 1963.

To Highmore, Charlie's appeal is based on his being "a normal boy. He doesn't have any special talents or superior qualities. In fact, he doesn't have much of anything at all, except for his family, but he's always thoughtful and really nice to everyone."

Very different from Charlie is the gum-chewing Violet Beauregarde, played by AnnaSophia Robb. "She's a rude, bratty, and selfish little girl," Robb says and notes she is nothing like her character.

She does, however, like to chew gum. "It has always been my favorite candy," she says. "I like all kinds of gum, bubble gun is probably my favorite. I like to blow bubbles. Sometimes it was so sweet, that was the only time I had a problem with it, but my mouth never hurt."

Twelve years old when "Charlie" began production, Highmore had already carried leading roles in the family films, "Five Children and It" with Kenneth Branagh; and "Two Brothers," directed by Jean-Jacques Annaud. He also portrayed a young King Arthur in the TNT miniseries, "The Mists of Avalon."

"Charlie and the Chocolate Factory" is the second time that he has played Helena Bonham Carter's child. His very first film role was playing her son in "Women Talking Dirty."

Highmore has appeared in a number of television productions in the U.K., including the BBC film, "Happy Birthday Shakespeare" and the ITV's mini series, "I Saw You."

He is currently shooting "Arthur and the Minimoys" for Luc Besson in France.

Born in Denver, Colo., Dec. 8, 1993, Robb was last seen by millions in the lead role of Opal, opposite Jeff Daniels, in the 20th Century Fox film, "Because of Winn-Dixie," directed by Wayne Wang.

She played the leading role of Samantha in "Samantha: An American Girl Holiday," a TV movie for The WB, which boasts some of the highest ratings for any movie broadcast in the network's 10-year history.

Other television credits include a guest appearance on Nickelodeon, playing Liza in "Drake and Josh" and a recurring role as Danielle in Nickelodeon's "Danny Phantom."

Commercially, AnnaSophia booked her first radio voiceover at 8 years old eight and has subsequently appeared in several national TV commercials.