Gene Wilder Calls Wonka Remake “An Insult”

Willy Wonka

Gene Wilder, 80,  made a rare appearance in New York City and referred to the remake of Charlie and the Chocolate Factory as, “An Insult”.  Wilder was speaking to Turner Classic Movies Host Robert Osbourne, and told him that “Johnny Depp, I think, is a good actor, but I don’t care for that director. He’s a talented man, but I don’t care for him doing stuff like he did.”  Wilder is a Hollywood icon starring in classics like Blazing Saddles, Young Frankenstein and The Producers.  He has not been seen much in recent years but did say he would be willing to make another film if the right script came along, “If something comes along and it’s really good and I think I’d be good for it, I’d be happy to do it.”  But, he continued, “I didn’t want to do 3D, for instance. I didn’t want to do ones that were just bombing and swearing”  The point that Steven Spielberg and George Lucas made this past week, is well taken as it applies to Wilder.  He is a great genius and doesn’t require bombs, swearing and special effects to keep an audience engaged.  It’s about the acting.  Unfortunately, time is running out on many of our great actors/comedians.  They will all soon be part of history, Mel Brooks, Carl Reiner, and Gene Wilder to name just a few.  For whatever reason, the great actors like the great composers lasted for a finite period of time.  We have come to accept mediocrity as the norm because there are enough decent actors left to make it all palatable.  And, quite frankly, we are much more mediocre than we once were, accepting lower standards so we appear to be kinder and gentler.  The little girl with her Friday song had as much talent as a mosquito and yet her video went viral.  But she is just one example, Snooki is another.  And in the meantime, fewer and fewer of the greats remain. Can’t someone find Mr Wilder a part before it’s too late?!

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