The Wilder Side of Life
Gene Wilder died on August 29, 2016.
His death still hurts and remains tragic because of the comedic characters he played, most especially Willy Wonka on the silver screen. And what made his portrayal so memorable and beloved by millions of kids and adults alike is that he possessed a very real three-dimensional quality (and bizarre new dimensions that looked other-worldly in some scenes) that was projected through a wacky two-dimensional character written in a book and screenplay.
Like his famed–and sadly fictional chocolate an candy factory–there was always something more there. There was something genuine lingering above the circus-like atmosphere and quintessential ’70s sets.
Back in March 2007, Gene Wilder gave an interview about his life and career. Portions of this conversation were animated into a condensed video series for PBS Digital Studios called “Blank on Blank.”
The reason for posting this interview today of an actor who died in 2016 is the same as why we will spontaneously watch ‘Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory’ that was released theatrically in 1971:
A random curiosity for wonder and reassurance of this thing in life called pure imagination.