RIP, Leo Bloom
August 29, 2016 12:34 PM   Subscribe

Gene Wilder has died at age 83. Gene Wilder, who regularly stole the show in such comedic gems as “The Producers,” “Blazing Saddles,” “Young Frankenstein,” “Willie Wonka and the Chocolate Factory” and “Stir Crazy,” died Monday at his home in Stamford, Conn. His nephew Jordan Walker-Pearlman said he died of complications from Alzheimer’s disease.

In 2013, Wilder spoke with Robert Osbourne at the 92Y in New York.
posted by holborne (295 comments total) 36 users marked this as a favorite
 
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posted by maryr at 12:35 PM on August 29, 2016


i hate 2016 so much
posted by burgerrr at 12:35 PM on August 29, 2016 [77 favorites]


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I enjoyed his film performances a great deal.
posted by Bella Donna at 12:35 PM on August 29, 2016 [3 favorites]


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posted by ryanshepard at 12:36 PM on August 29, 2016


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posted by TungstenChef at 12:36 PM on August 29, 2016


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posted by little onion at 12:37 PM on August 29, 2016


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posted by Melismata at 12:37 PM on August 29, 2016


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posted by Carillon at 12:37 PM on August 29, 2016


I'm a lot sadder about this than I have any right to be. The Producers was one of my formative influences, even more so than Willy Wonka.
posted by holborne at 12:37 PM on August 29, 2016 [4 favorites]


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(link goes to "Pure Imagination," for those on mobile)
posted by zombieflanders at 12:37 PM on August 29, 2016 [15 favorites]


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posted by ZeusHumms at 12:38 PM on August 29, 2016


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posted by Atom Eyes at 12:38 PM on August 29, 2016


Bowie? Shandling? And now Wilder?

Scientists need to work on that whole forward passage of time thing. It's all too much.
posted by downtohisturtles at 12:38 PM on August 29, 2016 [3 favorites]


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posted by Countess Elena at 12:39 PM on August 29, 2016


i hate 2016 so much

Given that he died of complications of Alzheimer’s, I will not begrudge 2016 this reaping. If they have a quota to fill, let it be like this -- those who have lived long and well, and whose extended existence would be more suffering than joy.

Rest well, Mr. Wilder. I hope your end was peaceful, and that you still knew that those around you loved you.

I hope Gilda was there to greet you, laughing.
posted by anastasiav at 12:39 PM on August 29, 2016 [183 favorites]


My fiancé tells a great story of going to see a Broadway show called "Luv", starring Alan Arkin. He liked it so much that he went back a few weeks later with a date, only to be horrified that they were seeing the understudy, an unknown actor named Gene Wilder.

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Thanks for being funnier than Alan Arkin that day.
posted by roomthreeseventeen at 12:39 PM on August 29, 2016 [33 favorites]


:( :( :( :( :(
posted by You Can't Tip a Buick at 12:39 PM on August 29, 2016 [2 favorites]


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posted by mustard seeds at 12:39 PM on August 29, 2016


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Weird Gene Wilder note... He went to the same high school as former baseball commissioner Bud Selig and Senator Herb Kohl.
posted by drezdn at 12:40 PM on August 29, 2016 [2 favorites]


"Young Frankenstein" was the first movie I saw with no adults: just me and my brother
posted by thelonius at 12:40 PM on August 29, 2016 [20 favorites]


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posted by scaryblackdeath at 12:41 PM on August 29, 2016


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posted by JakeEXTREME at 12:41 PM on August 29, 2016


Oh, I don't know. Play chess, screw.
Well let's play chess.

posted by little onion at 12:41 PM on August 29, 2016 [14 favorites]


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Any actor capable of making his co-star corpse with an ad-lib, and manage to keep it in the final film is clearly a legend.
posted by SansPoint at 12:41 PM on August 29, 2016 [48 favorites]


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posted by humanfont at 12:42 PM on August 29, 2016


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People die, it doesn't have anything to do with the year.
posted by Pendragon at 12:42 PM on August 29, 2016 [15 favorites]


My first thought was, "Oh, he'll get to see Gilda again at last" and then I couldn't stop leaking from my eyeballs because of all the onions in this office.
posted by angeline at 12:42 PM on August 29, 2016 [25 favorites]


Gilda and Gene, together forever
posted by Queen of Spreadable Fats at 12:42 PM on August 29, 2016 [5 favorites]


I've watched Blazing Saddles and Young Frankenstein more times than is healthy.

Peace to you and yours, Gene.

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posted by Existential Dread at 12:42 PM on August 29, 2016 [5 favorites]


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posted by montag2k at 12:43 PM on August 29, 2016


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posted by Captain_Science at 12:43 PM on August 29, 2016


I keep getting choked up every time I see the headline. My girlfriend and I were cracking up all day yesterday making Young Frankenstein jokes (our favorite movie).

I hope he's with GIlda now.

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posted by Cat Pie Hurts at 12:43 PM on August 29, 2016 [4 favorites]


We are the music makers... and we are the dreamers of dreams.
posted by disconnect at 12:43 PM on August 29, 2016 [30 favorites]


Strike that. Reverse it.

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posted by Aznable at 12:43 PM on August 29, 2016 [39 favorites]


• Sad day for damn near everyone. He was a good guy!
posted by Katjusa Roquette at 12:44 PM on August 29, 2016


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posted by cazoo at 12:44 PM on August 29, 2016


Also, this lightens the sadness at least a bit:
“We understand for all the emotional and physical challenges this situation presented we have been among the lucky ones — this illness-pirate, unlike in so many cases, never stole his ability to recognize those that were closest to him, nor took command of his central-gentle-life affirming core personality. The decision to wait until this time to disclose his condition wasn’t vanity, but more so that the countless young children that would smile or call out to him “there’s Willy Wonka,” would not have to be then exposed to an adult referencing illness or trouble and causing delight to travel to worry, disappointment or confusion. He simply couldn’t bear the idea of one less smile in the world.

He continued to enjoy art, music, and kissing with his leading lady of the last twenty-five years, Karen. He danced down a church aisle at a wedding as parent of the groom and ring bearer, held countless afternoon movie western marathons and delighted in the the company of beloved ones."
posted by Existential Dread at 12:44 PM on August 29, 2016 [105 favorites]


Thank you for making me smile, so many times.
posted by dances_with_sneetches at 12:45 PM on August 29, 2016 [2 favorites]


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posted by Pope Guilty at 12:45 PM on August 29, 2016


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posted by jabo at 12:45 PM on August 29, 2016


Grateful for all the laughing-to-the-point-of-crying-and-making-snorting-noises he made me do over the years.

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posted by rtha at 12:46 PM on August 29, 2016 [1 favorite]


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posted by ndfine at 12:46 PM on August 29, 2016


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posted by litlnemo at 12:46 PM on August 29, 2016


I'm hysterical!

I'm wet!

Well, around the eyes, anyway. . . .

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posted by rdone at 12:48 PM on August 29, 2016 [10 favorites]


fuck 2016


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posted by orangutan at 12:49 PM on August 29, 2016 [1 favorite]


Aw. Damn it.

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posted by lumpenprole at 12:49 PM on August 29, 2016


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posted by graymouser at 12:49 PM on August 29, 2016


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I could add any number of quotes, but the part of Young Frankenstein that never fails to make me laugh, ever time I see it, is the awkward pause between Igor's "what hump?" and Frankenstein's "Let's go." The guy was a master of timing.
posted by cottoncandybeard at 12:49 PM on August 29, 2016 [8 favorites]


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posted by EmpressCallipygos at 12:50 PM on August 29, 2016


Come with me...
and you'll be...

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posted by sallybrown at 12:50 PM on August 29, 2016 [1 favorite]


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posted by Iridic at 12:51 PM on August 29, 2016


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posted by mixedmetaphors at 12:52 PM on August 29, 2016


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posted by grimmelm at 12:52 PM on August 29, 2016


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posted by Token Meme at 12:52 PM on August 29, 2016


My sister and I were raised on Haunted Honeymoon

... and that's what I call Ballin' the Jack!
posted by Dressed to Kill at 12:52 PM on August 29, 2016


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Haunted Honeymoon was one of the first movies my parents took us to as kids and I still have a fondness for it.
posted by Kitteh at 12:52 PM on August 29, 2016 [3 favorites]


In the wake of Wilder's passing, you're going to see a ton of Wonka clips, maybe a few Young Frankenstein. And that totally makes sense. Those were iconic and beautifully shaded performances and worthy of their places in the pantheon.
For me personally, I gravitate most to subtlety and subverting expectation. So the Gene Wilder clip I love more than almost any other is this one from Blazing Saddles. In less than a minute he draws out pathos, sadness, sets up a common trope and then flips the whole thing to end up at Hilarious.
RIP to an actor that could do it all.
posted by Senor Cardgage at 12:53 PM on August 29, 2016 [29 favorites]


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posted by Special Agent Dale Cooper at 12:53 PM on August 29, 2016


oh no

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posted by schmod at 12:54 PM on August 29, 2016


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I will say, having seen a very difficult-to-watch television interview with him within the past few years, it was apparent even a few years ago that his memory and sense of self had suffered greatly. I am not surprised at the Alzheimer's diagnosis. I wish comfort to his family and absolutely celebrate the life he lived, but it is not for me to say that this particular death was untimely.

Thanks, Gene, for all of the laughs!
posted by mosk at 12:54 PM on August 29, 2016 [4 favorites]


no thank u, i'll take the parallel universe where this is fiction
posted by poffin boffin at 12:54 PM on August 29, 2016 [6 favorites]


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posted by gizzmo at 12:55 PM on August 29, 2016


I wasn't expecting this one to hit me so hard, but here I am, crying in my office. Rest well, funny man.
posted by merriment at 12:56 PM on August 29, 2016 [1 favorite]


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posted by Bibliogeek at 12:57 PM on August 29, 2016


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posted by scruss at 12:57 PM on August 29, 2016


Dang. He was Mrs. Wallflower's emergency backup husband.

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posted by Johnny Wallflower at 12:57 PM on August 29, 2016 [3 favorites]


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posted by custardfairy at 12:58 PM on August 29, 2016


Just thinking about him explaining that Rembrandt is dead to the sheriff in Silver Streak has me cracking up right now.
posted by Ray Walston, Luck Dragon at 12:58 PM on August 29, 2016 [7 favorites]


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posted by /\/\/\/ at 12:58 PM on August 29, 2016


I've been going through Gene's 'lesser' movies lately -- Frisco Kid, Silver Streak, See No Evil -- and while those movies themselves may be a bit weak or dated, he brought the magic to every single scene. Amazing.

I had hoped he had another book in him, too. Maybe not a realistic hope, but I still wanted it.

He had a lot of legendary performances -- a LOT -- but everything he did is worthwhile. Everything. There's not many in his business you can say that of.

Godspeed, Gene. And thank you.

"Because you wasted so much time on me, you made me feel very important."
posted by Capt. Renault at 12:59 PM on August 29, 2016 [5 favorites]


We are the music-makers, and we are the dreamers of dreams.

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posted by fifteen schnitzengruben is my limit at 12:59 PM on August 29, 2016 [1 favorite]


I'm so glad that he insisted on keeping Puttin' on the Ritz in Young Frankenstein over Mel Brooks' objections.

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posted by hobgadling at 12:59 PM on August 29, 2016 [18 favorites]


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In the early-1970s, when originally offered the lead role in Willy Wonka & the Chocolate Factory by director Mel Stuart, the great Gene Wilder accepted on one condition:

"When I make my first entrance, I'd like to come out of the door carrying a cane and then walk toward the crowd with a limp. After the crowd sees Willy Wonka is a cripple, they all whisper to themselves and thethenn become deathly quiet. As I walk toward them, my cane sinks into one of the cobblestones I'm walking on and stands straight up, by itself; but I keep on walking, until I realize that I no longer have my cane. I start to fall forward, and just before I hit the ground, I do a beautiful forward somersault and bounce back up, to great applause."

Asked why, Wilder explained: "Because from that time on, no one will know if I'm lying or telling the truth."
posted by lubujackson at 12:59 PM on August 29, 2016 [63 favorites]


Most actors would kill to have one role that was as good and as personal as Wonka or Frankenstein or the Waco Kid, and Wilder still had Leo Bloom in his back pocket.

One of my criteria for a movie is "Did they at least have fun making it?", which I am pretty sure came from those Wilder-Pryor movies where you could tell that, no matter how otherwise bad they were, here were two guys who just liked working with each other.

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posted by Etrigan at 1:00 PM on August 29, 2016 [17 favorites]


We have SO SO many moments of delight that he gave us, all preserved on film. We are very lucky to be able to call him up at a moment's notice and laugh all over again. So how cruel that his own memory betrayed him in his final years.

Bless you, Mister Wilder, and thank you for making me laugh so hard I had to hit the Pause button, time after time after time.
posted by wenestvedt at 1:01 PM on August 29, 2016 [4 favorites]


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posted by Martijn at 1:01 PM on August 29, 2016



posted by bz at 1:02 PM on August 29, 2016


Currently reading Charlie & the Chocolate Factory with my little girl. When I read Willy Wonka's lines, I see Gene Wilder in my head, and the voice I try to do is his, though I will never match it. Thanks for everything.
posted by Kafkaesque at 1:02 PM on August 29, 2016 [1 favorite]


Wilder always stood apart from most other actors in my mind from childhood. He had this look in his eyes that when I was little I thought was maybe contained anger, so it scared me a little. His Wonka was borderline frightening.

But as I got older it seemed less like anger and more like he was seeing more with those eyes than he was letting on. Like he could see straight into you, right into the core of you, and was remarking to himself without judgment what lay there. It was an otherworldly gaze that he only lost when he was either laughing or screaming. Outside of that, he was watching and listening.

I noticed it more as he got older, so nowadays I wonder if that was mostly the look of a man who'd had his guts ripped out and was determined to make the best of it. Everyone should have someone love them the way he loved Gilda, and no one should have to suffer the way he did when she died. No one should have to be as strong as he was.

RIP.
posted by middleclasstool at 1:04 PM on August 29, 2016 [29 favorites]


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posted by pt68 at 1:04 PM on August 29, 2016


Walk this way.
posted by MiltonRandKalman at 1:04 PM on August 29, 2016 [5 favorites]


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posted by AlonzoMosleyFBI at 1:04 PM on August 29, 2016


Gene had this otherworldly gentleness to him. A soul-deep sweetness where even when he was playing in a sex comedy like Woman in Red you never got the sense that he was doing dirtier material. The entire project seemed cleaner from him being in it.
posted by Senor Cardgage at 1:05 PM on August 29, 2016 [5 favorites]


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dammit all to hell now Wonka's gone too
posted by Mooski at 1:05 PM on August 29, 2016


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posted by edd at 1:06 PM on August 29, 2016


I'm hysterical!

I'm wet!


I'm in pain...I'm wet...and I'm still hysterical!

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posted by Mr. Bad Example at 1:06 PM on August 29, 2016 [9 favorites]


There is only one Willy Wonka and Gene Wilder played him.
posted by tommasz at 1:06 PM on August 29, 2016 [16 favorites]


🍫
posted by fremen at 1:07 PM on August 29, 2016 [5 favorites]


Our local community theater just did a run of The Producers, which I went to see with my fiance. The Producers is one of his favorite shows, so of course afterward, we had to see both movies. And then Blazing Saddles. Because, why not?

Thanks for bringing the both of us so much joy over the years.
posted by PearlRose at 1:07 PM on August 29, 2016 [2 favorites]


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2016, please just stop it already!
posted by SisterHavana at 1:07 PM on August 29, 2016 [1 favorite]


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posted by psoas at 1:08 PM on August 29, 2016


I almost posted that myself, fremen.

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posted by GrammarMoses at 1:08 PM on August 29, 2016


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or with my typing hand:

.-,.-,.-,.,-.,.-,.-,.-,-,.-,-,-.,.-,-.,-.
posted by lmfsilva at 1:08 PM on August 29, 2016 [8 favorites]


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posted by rewil at 1:09 PM on August 29, 2016


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posted by JoeXIII007 at 1:09 PM on August 29, 2016


on Thursday I have tickets to Back in the Saddle Again! at Radio City Music Hall. It's a thing where they show Blazing Saddles and then Mel Brooks comes out and talks about it.

Thursday might be the day I show emotions in public.
posted by griphus at 1:10 PM on August 29, 2016 [29 favorites]


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posted by fings at 1:12 PM on August 29, 2016 [1 favorite]


So sad about this.

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posted by jet_pack_in_a_can at 1:12 PM on August 29, 2016


Oy.
posted by briank at 1:12 PM on August 29, 2016


Ah no no no.... I hate Alzheimer's, but it's somehow even more terrible when such a wonderful mind is wounded. But many thanks for The Producers, Young Frankenstein, Blazing Saddles, and all the rest.

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posted by easily confused at 1:12 PM on August 29, 2016 [3 favorites]


@griphus, saw it two months ago in Chicago. Felt totally like Mel was a grandpa at the dining table telling old stories. It was great.
posted by stormpooper at 1:13 PM on August 29, 2016 [3 favorites]


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posted by essexjan at 1:13 PM on August 29, 2016


My first stage lead was Willy Wonka, and I was determined at the outset not to steal any bits from Gene Wilder, which of course was delusional bullshit.

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posted by DrAstroZoom at 1:14 PM on August 29, 2016 [9 favorites]


We all go down that tunnel from Willie Winka in the end. Hope it takes him somewhere good.
posted by Artw at 1:14 PM on August 29, 2016


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posted by brevator at 1:14 PM on August 29, 2016


I hope they have fizzy lifting drinks there.
posted by roomthreeseventeen at 1:16 PM on August 29, 2016 [2 favorites]


We all go down that tunnel from Willie Winka in the end.

God, I hope not.

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posted by chainsofreedom at 1:16 PM on August 29, 2016 [7 favorites]


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posted by Smart Dalek at 1:16 PM on August 29, 2016


Felt totally like Mel was a grandpa at the dining table telling old stories.

That reminds me; there's a documentary (might still be on Netflix) about Mel Brooks, and someone tells this story about when they were working together, possibly on Blazing Saddles, and Mel Brooks keeps bugging Gene Wilder with all this technical stuff he's doing as director (like making a point to explain everything). And Wilder's like "why are you showing me all this?" and Mel Brooks says "because I know you want to direct."

Gene Wilder was someone special.
posted by griphus at 1:17 PM on August 29, 2016 [14 favorites]


There is no life I know
To compare with
Pure imagination
Living there, you'll be free
If you truly wish to be

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posted by 4ster at 1:17 PM on August 29, 2016 [4 favorites]


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Oh damn. Such a huge part of my childhood. I saw Willy Wonka in the theater on it's first run. I was seven and in 1971, that meant that I was old enough to take my best friend who was a year younger and walk to the Jersey Theater by ourselves with our dollar bill each and go to the movies. That film totally blew our little minds and Wilder was my favorite comic actor from then on.
posted by octothorpe at 1:18 PM on August 29, 2016 [4 favorites]


I love his work so so so much, especially Blazing Saddles, Young Frankenstein, the Frisco Kid, and Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory. No matter how strange his character might be, there was also always a sense of a deep core of tenderness inside. He performed a type of masculinity I wish I saw a lot more of.

Let me also highly recommend a couple of TV movies he did on the A&E channel in 1999: Murder in a Small Town and The Lady in Question. They're period pieces, set in 1930s Stamford, Connecticut, with Wilder as a stage director/former actor who helps solve crimes.

Wilder co-wrote them, and I absolutely loved them. He has that gentle-smart-thoughtful tone to his performance, and I enjoy the period atmosphere. It was apparently supposed to be an ongoing franchise, but in the end they only made two, more's the pity.

I don't know if they're on any of the streaming services; you can buy DVD-on-demand versions via Amazon. If you love Wilder's work and haven't seen these yet, check them out! They'll let you spend more time with him, which I think we all could use.
posted by theatro at 1:20 PM on August 29, 2016 [13 favorites]




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posted by Peach at 1:23 PM on August 29, 2016


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posted by wallabear at 1:23 PM on August 29, 2016


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posted by cooker girl at 1:23 PM on August 29, 2016


(I would love to have a FPP or a FanFare post about that traveling Me Brooks show, pleaseandthankyou.)
posted by wenestvedt at 1:23 PM on August 29, 2016 [1 favorite]


According to the statement from his family, the Alzheimer's hadn't stolen him away entirely:
It is with indescribable sadness and blues, but with spiritual gratitude for the life lived that I announce the passing of husband, parent, and universal artist Gene Wilder, at his home in Stamford Connecticut. It is almost unbearable for us to contemplate our life without him.

The cause was complications from Alzheimers Disease with which he co-existed for the last three years. The choice to keep this private was his choice, in talking with us and making a decision as a family. We understand for all the emotional and physical challenges this situation presented we have been among the lucky ones—this illness-pirate, unlike in so many cases, never stole his ability to recognize those that were closest to him, nor took command of his central-gentle-life affirming core personality. It took enough, but not that.

The decision to wait until this time to disclose his condition wasn't vanity, but mom so that the countless young children that would smile or call out to him 'there's Willy Wonka," would not have to be then exposed to an adult referencing illness or trouble and causing delight to travel to worry, disappointment or confusion. He simply couldn't bear the idea of one less smile in the world.

He continued to enjoy art, music, and kissing with his leading lady of the last twenty-five years, Karen. He danced down a church aisle at a wedding as parent of the groom and ring bearer, held countless afternoon movie western marathons and delighted in the the company of beloved ones.

He is survived by Karen, Jordan, and the Webbs (Kevin, Gretchen, Tucker, Spencer), along Jordan's wife Elizabeth. Gene's sister Corinne, predeceased him in January of this year.

He was eighty-three and passed holding ow hands with the same tenderness and love he exhibited as long as I can remember. As our hands clutched and he performed one last breath the music speaker, which was set to random, began to blare out one of his favorites: Ella Fitzgerald. There is a picture of he and Ella meeting at a London Bistro some years ago that are among each or cherished possessions. She was singing "Somewhere Over The Rainbow," as he was taken away.

"We are the music makers, and we are the dreamers of dreams."

Sincerely, "Gene's Kid"

Jordan Walker-Pearlman
posted by zombieflanders at 1:24 PM on August 29, 2016 [40 favorites]




She was singing "Somewhere Over The Rainbow," as he was taken away.

Ooooh, now that gets me. :7(
posted by wenestvedt at 1:25 PM on August 29, 2016 [3 favorites]


The decision to wait until this time to disclose his condition wasn't vanity, but mom so that the countless young children that would smile or call out to him 'there's Willy Wonka," would not have to be then exposed to an adult referencing illness or trouble and causing delight to travel to worry, disappointment or confusion. He simply couldn't bear the idea of one less smile in the world.
Just for emphasis.
posted by griphus at 1:26 PM on August 29, 2016 [6 favorites]


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posted by wintersonata9 at 1:26 PM on August 29, 2016


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posted by disclaimer at 1:26 PM on August 29, 2016


Any actor capable of making his co-star corpse with an ad-lib , and manage to keep it in the final film is clearly a legend.

Was that really an ad-lib, though? I agree that Cleavon Little's reaction seems like genuine laughter from the actor, but if Wilder's "morons" line was an ad-lib, what was the original button to that scene supposed to be?
posted by Atom Eyes at 1:27 PM on August 29, 2016 [1 favorite]


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posted by airish at 1:27 PM on August 29, 2016


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posted by discopolo at 1:27 PM on August 29, 2016


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posted by davelog at 1:28 PM on August 29, 2016


I see a cane stuck in cobblestone.
What gifts he shared, what love he gave.
posted by clavdivs at 1:28 PM on August 29, 2016 [3 favorites]


All respect and admiration in the world to Mel Brooks, but IMO one of the worst decisions he ever made was after "Young Frankenstein" when Gene asked what they were going to make together next, and Brooks responded that he wanted to go his own way.

Brooks is brilliant at comedy, and was already so before Wilder partnered up with him, but with the possible exception of "The Producers" he never made a better movie than the two they made together. Their chemistry produced something far greater than the sum of its parts. I wish they had done more together before they parted ways.
posted by middleclasstool at 1:29 PM on August 29, 2016 [5 favorites]


Do Not Open This Door!
posted by Joey Michaels at 1:30 PM on August 29, 2016 [1 favorite]


I hope they have fizzy lifting drinks there.

I always thought heaven would be like the Chocolate Room in Willy Wonka's factory. That room would be my heaven.
posted by SisterHavana at 1:31 PM on August 29, 2016 [1 favorite]


Gene Wilder is indirectly responsible for a story of mine. Once I was suffering from a mid-grade fever, and was laid out on the couch channel surfing while being mildly delirious. I happened across two channels that were showing different movies one after the other. The movies were The Who's Tommy...and Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory.

This was unwise.

About two-thirds of the way through the ordeal, I was lying there dazed and softly moaning either during the Acid Queen sequence in Tommy or Willy Wonka's boat ride, when Mrs. Example--my loving, caring, supportive wife--leaned down into my field of view and gently said:

"I told you not to watch, you dumbass."
posted by Mr. Bad Example at 1:32 PM on August 29, 2016 [14 favorites]


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posted by Splunge at 1:32 PM on August 29, 2016


OH, tears... I can't stand this.
posted by pjern at 1:35 PM on August 29, 2016


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Let's hear it for The Adventure of Sherlock Holmes' Smarter Brother.
"You mean Sheer-luck!!!"
posted by dannyboybell at 1:36 PM on August 29, 2016 [6 favorites]


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posted by wanderingmind at 1:37 PM on August 29, 2016


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As they say in Corsica... Goodbye.

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fuck 2016

I'm looking forward to typing a . for this ridiculous meme.
posted by fairmettle at 1:38 PM on August 29, 2016 [3 favorites]


I have a rabbit named Abby after that scene in you-know-what.
posted by lagomorphius at 1:39 PM on August 29, 2016 [1 favorite]


I never stole fizzy lifting drink as a kid because I didn't want to disappoint Gene Wilder and have him yell at me.

Wherever Gene Wilder is, I hope he's cracking wise with Madeline Kahn.

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posted by guiseroom at 1:40 PM on August 29, 2016 [5 favorites]


Let's hear it for The Adventure of Sherlock Holmes' Smarter Brother.
"You mean Sheer-luck!!!"

Oh my goodness yes. When I was a tiny wee 9-year-old Sherlockian this movie was funnier than literally anything else I had ever seen. It was my first experience of getting the in-jokes, and Wilder's manic glee was just the best.
posted by We put our faith in Blast Hardcheese at 1:40 PM on August 29, 2016 [1 favorite]


Thank you so much Mr Wonka. I know you and Gilda will be wandering about cavorting.
posted by LuckyMonkey21 at 1:42 PM on August 29, 2016


This is ill news, for those of us left behind without him.

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From Letters of Note - Part of this World, Part of Another:
In 1970, when originally offered the lead role in Willy Wonka & the Chocolate Factory by director Mel Stuart, the great Gene Wilder accepted on one condition. "When I make my first entrance,” he explained, “I'd like to come out of the door carrying a cane and then walk toward the crowd with a limp. After the crowd sees Willy Wonka is a cripple, they all whisper to themselves and then become deathly quiet. As I walk toward them, my cane sinks into one of the cobblestones I'm walking on and stands straight up, by itself; but I keep on walking, until I realize that I no longer have my cane. I start to fall forward, and just before I hit the ground, I do a beautiful forward somersault and bounce back up, to great applause." Asked why, Wilder said, "Because from that time on, no one will know if I'm lying or telling the truth."
Continue reading for his insights on the design of the costume.
posted by nubs at 1:46 PM on August 29, 2016 [7 favorites]


My neighbor years ago. Used to run into him and chat from time to time. Nice man, and lived his work


RIP

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posted by sfts2 at 1:49 PM on August 29, 2016 [9 favorites]


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posted by mikelieman at 1:50 PM on August 29, 2016


He simply couldn’t bear the idea of one less smile in the world.

I teared up so hard when I read this. I think he actually matched my expectations.

When I was a kid, my mom told me that Gene Wilder was a good and gentle man*. It took me a long time to understand what that meant. I didn't have very many male role models in my life, so there was a definitive imprinting with Mr. Wilder. I'm thankful for that.
posted by Cat Pie Hurts at 1:51 PM on August 29, 2016 [8 favorites]


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posted by cashman at 1:51 PM on August 29, 2016


My childhood has ended
posted by mikelieman at 1:51 PM on August 29, 2016 [2 favorites]




I love the fact that he came up with the idea for Willie Wonka's entrance: walking out slowly with a cane, a decrepit old man, then ending with a pratfall somersault and bow. He insisted on it, against the director's strong objections, and he was right. It's one of the most memorable parts of the movie, and defines the character perfectly from the moment he appears.

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posted by alms at 1:51 PM on August 29, 2016 [3 favorites]


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posted by tonycpsu at 1:55 PM on August 29, 2016


This great artist lightened so many souls and lifted so many smiles; he made human life more joyful. And who has a greater epitaph than one who has caused happiness to exist in the hearts of others? The vast universe is omnipotent and pitiless, but of Gene Wilder I can say, "he made me laugh and be happy".
posted by the quidnunc kid at 1:55 PM on August 29, 2016 [8 favorites]


Oscar was Wilde, but Gene was Wilder.

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posted by Faint of Butt at 1:56 PM on August 29, 2016 [14 favorites]


How far that little candle throws his beams!
So shines a good deed in a naughty world.
posted by Vic Morrow's Personal Vietnam at 1:56 PM on August 29, 2016 [9 favorites]




Always my Willy Wonka. :-(
posted by Mr.Me at 1:57 PM on August 29, 2016


"This is Mrs. Bencours, one of my patients. She thinks she's a sheep."
posted by Capt. Renault at 1:57 PM on August 29, 2016 [3 favorites]


He was much more than just an actor. Young Frankenstein was his script (though I'm sure it wouldn't have been the same without Mel Brooks.)

One of his lesser films that I always had a soft spot for was Start the Revolution Without Me. The line "I thought it was a costume ball" became a catch phrase with a certain set of friends whenever things seemed confusing.

My homage to Gene is that I've had "Puttin on the Ritz" as my ringtone for as long as phones have been able to do that sort of thing.

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posted by CheeseDigestsAll at 1:58 PM on August 29, 2016 [1 favorite]


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posted by shockingbluamp at 1:59 PM on August 29, 2016


The cause was complications from Alzheimers Disease with which he co-existed for the last three years.

Co-existed. Alzheimers is a hell of a disease, but there is something wonderfully uplifting about this statement that makes me hope that I can have the kind of grace in my life that he demonstrated in his.

RIP Gene.
posted by urbanwhaleshark at 1:59 PM on August 29, 2016 [6 favorites]


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posted by dogstoevski at 1:59 PM on August 29, 2016


Goddammit2016.

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posted by Thorzdad at 2:00 PM on August 29, 2016


Blazing Saddles has been one of my go-to movies for when I'm really pretty fed up with the world and Wilder's sad, gentle, wry wit is a big part of what makes it special.
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posted by smirkette at 2:02 PM on August 29, 2016


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posted by eclectist at 2:02 PM on August 29, 2016


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posted by ktoad at 2:07 PM on August 29, 2016


a huge loss. May he rest in peace and love
posted by mumimor at 2:07 PM on August 29, 2016


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:(
posted by JohnFromGR at 2:08 PM on August 29, 2016


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posted by inconsequentialist at 2:09 PM on August 29, 2016


I've spent my entire marriage quoting Young Frankenstein with my wife. It's all become a bit bittersweet now but we will not stop doing it. Now we do it for Gene. RIP you glorious bastard!
posted by Ber at 2:11 PM on August 29, 2016 [4 favorites]


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posted by bstreep at 2:12 PM on August 29, 2016


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posted by Annabelle74 at 2:13 PM on August 29, 2016


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posted by elsilnora at 2:16 PM on August 29, 2016


Also, this lightens the sadness at least a bit...

That was the point where the tears started for me. What an absolutely kind and generous thing to do.
Safe travels Gene, and thanks.

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posted by BigHeartedGuy at 2:17 PM on August 29, 2016 [1 favorite]


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posted by stolyarova at 2:17 PM on August 29, 2016


I said GOOD DAY!

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posted by Sophie1 at 2:20 PM on August 29, 2016 [4 favorites]


I get finding the "wtf 2016" sentiments a little tiresome. On the other hand, there have been a lot of celebrity deaths this year that stand out because the people in question seemed in some sense irreplaceable. Obviously every death is a loss, and every person is "irreplaceably" unique, but people who make their living performing have a public persona distinct from their actual personality. And those personas aren't unique nearly as often as they should be.

So, here's to Gene Wilder. Think of any of his iconic roles, the movies that he did with Brooks, or with Pryor, or "Willy Wonka", and try to imagine them with somebody else in his role. There's no one else you can slot in there and have it work quite so well, is there? And it's awfully hard to imagine anyone coming along who has exactly the same utility value for exactly the same type of film, isn't it?

There aren't any "Gene Wilder types". He was perfectly, idiosyncratically, distinctly himself. He embodied himself perfectly. If we could all do that, the world would be unrecognizably better.
posted by Ipsifendus at 2:21 PM on August 29, 2016 [15 favorites]


"So much time and so little to do. Wait a minute. Strike that. Reverse it. Thank you."

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posted by Fizz at 2:21 PM on August 29, 2016 [5 favorites]


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posted by MythMaker at 2:22 PM on August 29, 2016


There will never be anyone like him.

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(We can just cancel the rest of 2016 now, OK?)
posted by mochapickle at 2:22 PM on August 29, 2016


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posted by acb at 2:23 PM on August 29, 2016


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posted by MelanieL at 2:30 PM on August 29, 2016


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posted by JamesD at 2:31 PM on August 29, 2016


Yet another one of the icons of the 60s and 70s leaves us, and we are the poorer for it.

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posted by haiku warrior at 2:32 PM on August 29, 2016


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posted by talking leaf at 2:34 PM on August 29, 2016


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posted by aerotive at 2:38 PM on August 29, 2016


Not a substitute for those who haven't seen the film before, but good for those of us who would like a reminder of some darn fine moments of happiness.

Young Frankenstein in Five minutes.

Thanks for everything, GW.
posted by storybored at 2:41 PM on August 29, 2016 [2 favorites]


He was one of my first crushes as a little girl. Those eyes just awed me in Willie Wonka and Blazing Saddles, and he was so funny. He was one of the first people who caused me to understand dry wit. And when I grew up, I was inordinately pleased to learn that, 50 years before, he had grown up in my neighborhood in Milwaukee.

R.I.P., Jerome.
posted by droplet at 2:42 PM on August 29, 2016 [9 favorites]


hurts my heart

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posted by Golem XIV at 2:45 PM on August 29, 2016


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posted by detachd at 2:45 PM on August 29, 2016


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posted by KillaSeal at 2:46 PM on August 29, 2016


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posted by killy willy at 2:47 PM on August 29, 2016


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posted by From Bklyn at 2:47 PM on August 29, 2016


"What do actors really want? To be great actors? Yes, but you can’t buy talent, so it’s best to leave the word ‘great’ out of it. I think to be believed, onstage or onscreen, is the one hope that all actors share.”

A quote of his from the NYT obituary.
posted by storybored at 2:52 PM on August 29, 2016 [7 favorites]


Oh no. A legend.
posted by mondo dentro at 2:52 PM on August 29, 2016


Sedagive?!!
posted by Brocktoon at 2:54 PM on August 29, 2016 [9 favorites]


He was one of a kind, and I dare to say it , but Mel Brooks might not have been Mel Brooks without him.
posted by Seekerofsplendor at 2:58 PM on August 29, 2016 [10 favorites]


Born Jerome Silberman, Wilder took his professional name from the playwright Thorton Wilder, whom he admired ... from NYMag

OMG, I never knew this! But it explains a whole lot about why I loved him so deeply. I cannot think about my childhood without remembering his movies. What a supremely funny, gifted, sweet human being he was. He will go down in history with the great ones. Chaplin, Lloyd, Keaton..... 2016, you suck.
posted by pjsky at 3:01 PM on August 29, 2016 [1 favorite]


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posted by condour75 at 3:01 PM on August 29, 2016


He was Mister Rogers plus performed mania. MeFites know what a compliment that is.

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posted by tzikeh at 3:15 PM on August 29, 2016 [9 favorites]


Has anyone mentioned that Wilder was also a gifted, sensitive watercolorist? There's a museum in New Britain CT that has this work, which is captivating up close.

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posted by kinnakeet at 3:16 PM on August 29, 2016 [4 favorites]


I'm so proud to share a name with this genius. Good day sir.

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posted by Bacon Bit at 3:18 PM on August 29, 2016 [2 favorites]


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posted by theora55 at 3:19 PM on August 29, 2016


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posted by evilDoug at 3:23 PM on August 29, 2016


Loved him. Loved his work. Loved reading how much my hero Gilda loved him. The Frisco Kid might not have been his best movie, but it definitely had as much to do with shaping my religious worldview as anything I got from Hebrew School (where we almost certainly also watched it). This is the G-d I believe in.

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posted by Mchelly at 3:38 PM on August 29, 2016 [2 favorites]


You were funny as hell and a great human to boot.

RIP and give my regards to Gilda, brother.
posted by jonmc at 3:41 PM on August 29, 2016 [5 favorites]


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posted by lalochezia at 3:45 PM on August 29, 2016


If there's a children's film better than Willy Wonka, I haven't seen it.
posted by Beholder at 3:48 PM on August 29, 2016 [2 favorites]


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I will never again be able to make myself smile just by remembering the phrase, 'Fuzzy wuzzy was a woman?!'
posted by Soulfather at 3:55 PM on August 29, 2016 [3 favorites]


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posted by Fuchsoid at 3:57 PM on August 29, 2016


So sad about this. Alan Tudyk nails it: "Gene Wilder acted at a different frequency than any other. He was always a moment away from tenderness or hysteria. What an original."
posted by misterbee at 4:02 PM on August 29, 2016 [15 favorites]


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posted by Deoridhe at 4:35 PM on August 29, 2016


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posted by motty at 4:38 PM on August 29, 2016


A few years ago, I knew an old octogenarian friend and colleague of mine was at the very end of his life. I was living in the mountains of Virginia, and he was living in Stoke-on-Trent in the UK. I called him one afternoon, and at the end of the conversation, although neither of us would admit it, we both knew we were saying farewell for the last time.

Holborne, watching that interview was the closest I have ever felt to that conversation. Thank you so much for sharing it.
posted by 4ster at 4:40 PM on August 29, 2016 [1 favorite]


those Wilder-Pryor movies where you could tell that, no matter how otherwise bad they were, here were two guys who just liked working with each other.

"We bad, that's right."


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posted by fuse theorem at 4:42 PM on August 29, 2016 [4 favorites]


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Was about to link to something from Stir Crazy, but on preview fuse theorem beat me to it. So I'm just going to go grab my DVD and watch it.
posted by monopas at 4:45 PM on August 29, 2016


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posted by Monkeymoo at 4:47 PM on August 29, 2016


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posted by Ickster at 4:48 PM on August 29, 2016


"Somewhere my flower's up there. It's a flower and in one moment all the stars will go dark."

The only actor who could play a tamed wild fox using only a suit.
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posted by benzenedream at 4:52 PM on August 29, 2016 [5 favorites]


We watched Blazing saddles just a month ago. I laughed as hard as when I saw it the first times, with my father. I laughed at things I did not catch as young, and I laughed at the ridiculous slap stick. RIP Mr Wilder.
posted by Rabarberofficer at 5:02 PM on August 29, 2016


He was like the 80s/90s Danny Kaye - perfect comedic timing, a plethora of amazing caricatures, and entertainment chops that crossed song, dance, film, comedy, drama and a whole host of nuance...

Thank you Mr Wilder.
posted by Nanukthedog at 5:08 PM on August 29, 2016 [5 favorites]


The beauty of that man's soul was written in his eyes. RIP, sweet prince.

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posted by dbiedny at 5:25 PM on August 29, 2016 [4 favorites]


.

Thanks for brightening our lives
posted by Samarium at 5:27 PM on August 29, 2016


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posted by sammyo at 5:34 PM on August 29, 2016


"Frahn-ken-steen."

Thanks for the laughs, sir.
posted by mandolin conspiracy at 5:35 PM on August 29, 2016 [1 favorite]


In a lifetime of iconic performances, perhaps Wilder's best was playing the romantic lead opposite a sheep.
posted by The Gooch at 5:45 PM on August 29, 2016




Thanks for the trip back to my early teens, summertime; and in passing making me feel pretty young again.
posted by buzzman at 6:05 PM on August 29, 2016


Holed up in my new office working hard, I heard someone make a random reference to my beloved Gilda, then "How old was [unheard]?" And I knew he'd died.

Eff ov. cancer and eff Alzheimers. (Both run in my fam.) And yes, this atheist hopes I'm wrong, and they're hanging out together making the angels pee their robes with laughter.
posted by NorthernLite at 6:05 PM on August 29, 2016 [4 favorites]


I AM NOT INTERESTED IN DEATH! THE ONLY THING THAT CONCERNS ME IS THE PRESERVATION OF LIFE!

Class...is...dismissed.
posted by Cookiebastard at 6:10 PM on August 29, 2016 [6 favorites]


"Young Frankenstein" was the first movie I saw with no adults: just me and my brother.

Same but it was me and my best friend. Strange, huh?

Well, here's a funny thing. Movie was playing. I was into it. SOOO excited. And Gene Wilder is on the screen screaming into the night, "WHAT HAVE I DONE?!" and with the excitement and freedom of the moment I spontaneously erupted back at the screen in my young, pre-teen voice, "YOU'VE CREATED A MONSTER!" And the place broke-up.

Looking back I can only imagine how funny it was. I mean, I did it in my then-kid's voice. What a magoo. To this day, I don't know what inspired me. It was just one of those winner moments that is frozen in time in my mind as the universe being a really great place to be yourself and yuk it up a little while doing it.

RIP, Mr Gene Wilder. My God, genius was a friend of yours.

*
posted by Mike Mongo at 6:16 PM on August 29, 2016 [15 favorites]


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posted by getawaysticks at 6:25 PM on August 29, 2016


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posted by cotton dress sock at 6:26 PM on August 29, 2016


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posted by jadepearl at 6:29 PM on August 29, 2016


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posted by theappleonatree at 6:35 PM on August 29, 2016


My siblings and I watched Start the Revolution Without Me until we wore out the VHS. A delightful movie, and my personal favorite Wilder role.

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posted by TwoStride at 6:36 PM on August 29, 2016 [2 favorites]


Loved his work, especially because his characters never seemed more than a few seconds away from losing their shit, when they weren't actually losing their shit.

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posted by Halloween Jack at 6:47 PM on August 29, 2016 [2 favorites]


I think there's no actor I would have enjoyed meeting more.
posted by zippy at 6:57 PM on August 29, 2016 [5 favorites]


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posted by mubba at 7:00 PM on August 29, 2016


No Oscar nod for Young Frankenstein and no Oscar nod for Willy Wonka. Unbelievable.
posted by Beholder at 7:08 PM on August 29, 2016 [1 favorite]


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with you on Gene Wilder as vivid childhood crush, droplet.
posted by cluebucket at 7:13 PM on August 29, 2016 [4 favorites]


🍫
posted by Phssthpok at 7:30 PM on August 29, 2016


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posted by radwolf76 at 7:56 PM on August 29, 2016


Me too on the crush and it never abated, either. What a wonderful, wonderful man he seems to have been, and from that obituary it sounds like he had a wonderful and loving family around him as well. I am saddened by his passing but so glad that he had the life he did and so very glad for the legacy he left behind.
posted by mygothlaundry at 8:01 PM on August 29, 2016 [2 favorites]


The best. Thank you. I hope you see Gilda again.
posted by oneironaut at 8:16 PM on August 29, 2016 [1 favorite]


How about a little applause for The Waco Kid?

Since my line's already been read, I'll just say:
"'Nowhere special' . . . I always wanted to go there."

and ride off into the sunset.

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posted by Herodios at 8:22 PM on August 29, 2016 [2 favorites]


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posted by chicainthecity at 8:23 PM on August 29, 2016


All I have is curse words.
posted by RolandOfEld at 8:26 PM on August 29, 2016 [1 favorite]


My blanket!

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posted by brujita at 8:31 PM on August 29, 2016


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posted by Sys Rq at 8:34 PM on August 29, 2016


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posted by BlueHorse at 8:44 PM on August 29, 2016


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posted by dopeypanda at 8:48 PM on August 29, 2016


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"Steady as a rock."
👋🔫
posted by Autumn Leaf at 8:57 PM on August 29, 2016 [2 favorites]


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posted by thomcatspike at 8:57 PM on August 29, 2016 [1 favorite]


."Steady as a rock."
👋🔫

(with my hands shaking while typing)...the line still gives me laughs to this day...
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posted by thomcatspike at 9:04 PM on August 29, 2016 [5 favorites]


I know he was a good actor and entertainer in his own right, but whenever I think of Gene Wilder, I think of Gilda Radner, because I know they loved each other so much and were separated too soon by her early death. So I'm sure Gene would not mind:
..
posted by hurdy gurdy girl at 9:05 PM on August 29, 2016 [4 favorites]


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posted by mark k at 9:19 PM on August 29, 2016


"Bonnie & Clyde" sprung so many wonderful actors and performances, his among them.
posted by Chitownfats at 9:23 PM on August 29, 2016 [3 favorites]


Young Frankenstein was the first movie of his I saw, not long after graduating from high school. I took a friend, a man my age whose conservative family had never allowed him to see a movie in a theater.

To say that he was blown away by the experience is putting it mildly. I don't think he got all of it, but he was blown away.

I'll miss you, Gene.

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posted by lhauser at 9:28 PM on August 29, 2016 [1 favorite]


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posted by Spatch at 9:32 PM on August 29, 2016


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I highly recommend the audio version of his book, Kiss Me Like A Stranger.
posted by luckynerd at 9:33 PM on August 29, 2016 [1 favorite]


Expanded: My blanket! My blanket! GIVE ME MY BLUE BLANKET!!!!!! UHLLYNHGNUNGHNNOO

My brother was exactly the same way until he was around 8.
posted by brujita at 10:09 PM on August 29, 2016 [1 favorite]


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posted by bryon at 10:17 PM on August 29, 2016


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His portrayal of the weary and panicked Polish rabbi, spotting a group of Amish men and yelling in Yiddish, "Landsmen!" in The Frisco Kid evokes laughter and tears, just thinking about it. (That's not this scene, but still...)
posted by The Wrong Kind of Cheese at 10:26 PM on August 29, 2016 [3 favorites]


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posted by Two unicycles and some duct tape at 10:55 PM on August 29, 2016


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posted by supercoiled at 11:24 PM on August 29, 2016


Lots of good lines in this interview:
Bobbie Wygant Interviews Gene Wilder for The Frisco Kid 1979
posted by Joe in Australia at 11:27 PM on August 29, 2016 [2 favorites]


I didn't know how to comment on this earlier.
Still don't.
What a huge guy. So sensitive, so hysterical, so genuine. I'm a 70's kid and he was all over my impressionable years.
That crazy fucking hair. The commitment and delivery in Young Frankenstein (and everything else he was in, for that matter.)
That hug at the end of Willa Wonka.
RIP Gene, and don't forget what happened to the man who suddenly got everything he always wanted.
posted by chococat at 11:27 PM on August 29, 2016 [6 favorites]


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posted by cybercoitus interruptus at 11:49 PM on August 29, 2016


The first, and perhaps the best, time that I ever laughed until I cried was watching the scene near the end of "The Producers" in which Leo Bloom breaks down in hysterics and starts insulting and attacking Max. Fat shaming is bad, I know, but the whole sequence in which Wilder punches ineffectually at Mostel and calls him a "fat, fat, fatty" cracks me up to this day.

"Willy Wonka" came out the year I turned 13, an age when I wanted nothing to do with childish things, and so I don't have the childhood attachment to that film that many other people seem to have. Seeing it as an adult many years later, I appreciated the film, but it wasn't the same thing as experiencing it as a kid.

However, "Blazing Saddles" and "Young Frankenstein" were immediately two of my favorite movies ever upon release, and remain so until this day. Both were frequently quoted by me and my high school friends (one of whom wrote "Hearts and kidneys are Tinker Toys!" in my yearbook senior year). And although "Stir Crazy" and in particular "Silver Streak" may not hold up quite as well as the films Wilder did with Mel Brooks, I enjoyed them a lot at the time and remember the performances of Wilder and Richard Pryor very fondly. It bums me out a lot that they're both gone now.

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posted by Nat "King" Cole Porter Wagoner at 12:17 AM on August 30, 2016 [2 favorites]


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My pal Jenny studied at the UK's Bristol Old Vic Theatre School at the same time as Mr Wilder. She always says how quiet he was!

Thanks so very much, good sir. Godspeed.
posted by On the Corner at 12:24 AM on August 30, 2016 [1 favorite]


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posted by drnick at 1:00 AM on August 30, 2016


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posted by kleinsteradikaleminderheit at 1:43 AM on August 30, 2016


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posted by kjs4 at 3:16 AM on August 30, 2016


I really loved that man. He never failed to make me laugh.

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posted by james33 at 3:49 AM on August 30, 2016


I'm trying to think of a current actor who has the combination of both verbal and physical comedic ability that Wilder had and not thinking of one.
posted by octothorpe at 5:34 AM on August 30, 2016 [2 favorites]


I wonder (in the just wondering sense, not the I-have-a-right-to-know-sense) how his current wife of 25 years feels about how her husband just died and all everyone can talk about is him and his previous wife. All his current wife seems to get is a mention in the "survived by" part. If I was her, I might be a little miffed when people start talking about how he's now with his "one true love". He was married to his widow for 25 years!

(Granted, the discussion here is more of his work. And I have no right to know or ask how his current wife feels about all of it, it just bugged me since every news story about his death made a huge deal out of his relationship with Gilda.)
posted by LizBoBiz at 5:49 AM on August 30, 2016 [27 favorites]


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posted by Gelatin at 6:26 AM on August 30, 2016


Totally agree, LizBoBiz. Plus, she lived through Alzheimer's with him.

Fat shaming is bad, I know,

Don't forget, though, that Leo apologizes for it in a later scene.
posted by holborne at 6:27 AM on August 30, 2016 [1 favorite]


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posted by seyirci at 6:28 AM on August 30, 2016


This election year, in particular, has me and the husband quoting Wilder's "Salt of the Earth" speech quite a bit.

RIP Gene.
posted by emjaybee at 7:28 AM on August 30, 2016 [1 favorite]


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posted by Chrysostom at 9:37 AM on August 30, 2016


Today, I also learned that Gene Wilder and I were born on the same day, 53 years apart. That's one of those cool bits of celeb birthday trivia that seems worth sharing, and fun, instead of just odd (or unfortunate).

I think it's time to dig out Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory, and it may be time to invest in a copy of Young Frankenstein, for my own mini memorial movie marathon, since the Netflix/HBO/Amazon Prime streaming selection of Gene Wilder movies is pretty nonexistent.
posted by PearlRose at 10:30 AM on August 30, 2016


PearlRose, me too! June 11ths unite! I always liked that I shared a birthday with Willy Wonka. Next year will be bittersweet of course, but it's still pretty great.
posted by Aznable at 10:46 AM on August 30, 2016 [1 favorite]


This one hit hard. He brought so much joy to my people.

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posted by blurker at 10:57 AM on August 30, 2016


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posted by PippinJack at 11:25 AM on August 30, 2016


I kept meaning to find a copy of See No Evil, Hear No Evil to watch, because I never had the chance to watch it in its entirety. In light of these sad news, I must redouble my efforts.
posted by CancerMan at 12:56 PM on August 30, 2016


The classroom scene in Young Frankenstein was one of humanity's greatest moments. Rest in Peace, KID
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posted by Fibognocchi at 1:06 PM on August 30, 2016 [1 favorite]


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posted by WalkerWestridge at 7:46 PM on August 30, 2016


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posted by jwhite1979 at 1:32 AM on August 31, 2016


I think it's time to dig out Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory, and it may be time to invest in a copy of Young Frankenstein, for my own mini memorial movie marathon, since the Netflix/HBO/Amazon Prime streaming selection of Gene Wilder movies is pretty nonexistent.


The "Young Frankenstein" Blu-Ray is pretty great. We watched it again the night Gene's passing was announced.
posted by DrAstroZoom at 7:15 AM on August 31, 2016


Brilliant, funny and tragic (the loss of Gilda and his onset of Alzheimer's) all in one curly-topped amazing man.

RIP and thank you for all the great moments of zaniness you provided for us.
posted by Lynsey at 10:36 AM on August 31, 2016


since the Netflix/HBO/Amazon Prime streaming selection of Gene Wilder movies is pretty nonexistent.

Yeah, I was pretty damn bummed to search for "Gene Wilder" on Netflix and find that it returned precisely zero movies. WTF.
posted by holborne at 10:45 AM on August 31, 2016


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posted by but no cigar at 2:17 PM on August 31, 2016


The 38 Things Wrong With the New Yorker’s Oompa Loompa Gene Wilder Tribute Cartoon

It is terrible but can I say how happy I am that everyone still associates Gene Wilder with Willy Wonka and vice-versa? And that everyone seems to have mentally blocked all memories of that horrible Tim Burton thing?
posted by octothorpe at 6:17 PM on September 1, 2016


Tim what now?
posted by Artw at 6:42 PM on September 1, 2016 [1 favorite]


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posted by Puddle Jumper at 1:20 AM on September 2, 2016


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