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Gene Wilder

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Gene Wilder
Wilder at a book signing in May 2007.
Jerome Silberman[1]

June 11, 1933(1933-06-11)
DiedAugust 28, 2016(2016-08-28) (aged 83)
Cause of deathComplications of Alzheimer's disease
EducationWashington High School
Alma materUniversity of Iowa
OccupationActor, Director, Writer, Author, Activist
Years active1961–2003
Spouse(s)Mary Mercier (m. 1960–65, divorced)
Mary Joan Schutz
(m. 1967–74, divorced)
Gilda Radner
(m. 1984–89, her death)[2]
Karen Boyer
(m. 1991—2016, his death)
RelativesJordan Walker-Pearlman (nephew)
Gene Wilder (signature).png

Gene Wilder (born Jerome Silberman, June 11, 1933, died August 29, 2016) was an American actor, movie director, screenwriter and author. He was most famous for his acting work and in particular for the movies he made with Mel Brooks which include The Producers, Blazing Saddles and Young Frankenstein. He also played the part of Willy Wonka in the musical movie Willy Wonka & the Chocolate Factory.

Wilder studied Communication and Theatre Arts at the University of Iowa.[3]

Wilder was drafted into the Army on September 10, 1956.

An unauthorized biography of Wilder called Gene Wilder: Funny and Sad by Brian Scott Mednick was published in December 2010 by BearManor Media.

Wilder died from problems caused by Alzheimer's disease on August 29, 2016 in Connecticut.[4]



Year Title Role Notes
1967 Bonnie and Clyde Eugene Grizzard
1968 The Producers Leo Bloom Nominated – Academy Award for Best Supporting Actor
1970 Start the Revolution Without Me The twins Claude and Philippe
Quackser Fortune Has a Cousin in the Bronx Quackser Fortune
1971 Willy Wonka & the Chocolate Factory Willy Wonka Nominated – Golden Globe Award for Best Actor - Motion Picture Musical or Comedy
1972 Everything You Always Wanted to Know About Sex* (*But Were Afraid to Ask) Dr. Doug Ross
The Scarecrow Lord Ravensbane/The Scarecrow Television
1974 Rhinoceros Stanley Based on Eugène Ionesco's play Rhinoceros
Blazing Saddles Jim, "The Waco Kid"
The Little Prince The Fox
Thursday's Game Harry Evers Television
Young Frankenstein Dr. Frankenstein Co-written with Mel Brooks
Nominated – Academy Award for Writing Adapted Screenplay
1975 The Adventure of Sherlock Holmes' Smarter Brother Sigerson Holmes Also director and writer
1976 Silver Streak George Caldwell Nominated – Golden Globe Award for Best Actor - Motion Picture Musical or Comedy
1977 The World's Greatest Lover Rudy Valentine, aka Rudy Hickman Also producer, director, and writer
1979 The Frisco Kid Avram Belinski
1980 Sunday Lovers Skippy Directed "Skippy" segment
Stir Crazy Skip Donahue
1982 Hanky Panky Michael Jordon
1984 The Woman in Red Teddy Pierce Also director and writer
1986 Haunted Honeymoon Larry Abbot Also director and writer
1989 See No Evil, Hear No Evil Dave Lyons Also writer
1990 Funny About Love Duffy Bergman
1991 Another You George/Abe Fielding
1999 Murder in a Small Town Larry "Cash" Carter Television
Alice in Wonderland The Mock Turtle
The Lady in Question Larry "Cash" Carter Television




  1. Wilder, Gene. Kiss Me Like a Stranger: My Search for Love and Art. St. Martin's Press, 2005. ISBN 0-312-33706-X.
  2. Radner, Gilda. It's Always Something. New York: Simon & Schuster, 1989.
  3. Distinguished Alumni Winner: Gene Wilder. University of Iowa Alumni Association. Retrieved on March 19, 2008
  4. "Gene Wilder Dies at 83; Star of 'Willy Wonka' and 'Young Frankenstein'". The New York Times. August 29, 2016. Retrieved August 29, 2016.