Mel Brooks Reflects on Assisting Gene Wilder Amid Alzheimer’s Diagnosis

🎬💔 Join Mel Brooks on an emotional journey as he shares his heartfelt attempts to aid Gene Wilder through his battle with Alzheimer’s. Prepare for a touching tale of friendship and resilience

Mel Brooks remembers feeling really sad when he found out his good friend Gene Wilder had Alzheimer’s disease. They had been friends for a long time and worked together on movies like The Producers, Blazing Saddles, and Young Frankenstein. In the documentary Remembering Gene Wilder, Brooks talks about how he tried calling Wilder a lot, hoping to help him remember things better. But Wilder’s memory kept getting worse because of the disease. Brooks says it was really tough to talk to Wilder once he got Alzheimer’s, and it made him cry a lot.

Wilder’s wife, Karen Boyer, also remembers noticing that Wilder was forgetting things, like the names of movies they worked on together. When Wilder passed away in 2016, his nephew shared that Wilder didn’t want people to know he had Alzheimer’s because he didn’t want to make his fans sad.

Brooks says he was very sad for a few weeks after Wilder died. He remembers Wilder as someone who lived life to the fullest, with lots of energy and talent. Brooks misses making Wilder laugh the most, because Wilder’s laughter was the best reward for a comedian.

The documentary includes interviews with Brooks, Boyer, and others who knew Wilder, like Harry Connick Jr., Carol Kane, Alan Alda, and film critic Ben Mankiewicz. It also uses parts from Wilder’s memoir to tell his life story, including his childhood, career, relationships with Boyer and his third wife Gilda Radner, and his work with Brooks.

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