Gene Wilder's Legacy

Beloved actor Gene Wilder passed away in his home in Stamford, Connecticut this past Monday, August 29th due to a complication connected to Alzheimer’s disease. He was 83 years old. He is survived by his fourth wife Karen Boyer as well as a daughter from a previous marriage.
Gene Wilder is best known for his work as a comedic actor during the late 20th century. Some of his most famous roles include the Waco Kid in “Blazing Saddles”, Dr. Frankenstein’s grandson in “Young Frankenstein”, Leo Bloom in “The Producers”, and the unforgettable Willy Wonka in the original version of “Charlie and the Chocolate Factory”.
Wilder is best known for his unique comedic style, which influenced each character he portrayed.
“I really connected with his manic style, a cool-headed demeanor that’s punctuated by this spastic, lovable energy,” said Augie student Josh Pride, who looks up to Wilder as both a comedian and an actor.
In addition to acting, Gene Wilder also directed four of the movies he starred in, as well as writing multiple screenplays during his career in show business. Wilder chose to retire from the screen shortly after the turn of the century, instead deciding to follow new creative paths.
After retiring, Wilder continued to take advantage of his talents, writing four novels and a memoir.
However, one of Wilder’s most important and personal contributions to the world remains his work as a founding member of Gilda’s Club. Named after his third wife Gilda Radner, an SNL comedian who died of ovarian cancer, Gilda’s Club is a national support network designed to connect and help patients with cancer. Wilder also helped to found one of Los Angeles’ ovarian cancer detection centers in honor of Radner.
“Gene Wilder’s legacy isn’t as luxurious or long as others, but his personas have left an undeniable mark on the psyche of those who saw him, knew him, (and) loved him,” explained Pride .
Wilder may no longer be a household name, but he remains a bright spot from the cinema of the 20th century. For those interested in learning more about Wilder’s personal life and career in acting, consider reading his memoir Kiss Me Like a Stranger: My Search for Love and Art.