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'Willy Wonka' Star Who Played Charlie Buckett Releases Statement About Gene Wilder's Death

'Willy Wonka' Star Who Played Charlie Buckett Releases Statement About Gene Wilder's Death

The actor who player Charlie Buckett in Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory film – Peter Ostrum – has released a statement on the death of Willy Wonka himself, Gene Wilder.

“He was the pro and I was a rookie,” Peter, who left show business to become a veterinarian, told Variety. “It’s kind of like losing a parent. You know it’s going to happen, but it’s still a shock. He was not in good health at the end and it was not unexpected by any means, but when it happens it hits you like, ‘Gene is gone and there will never be anyone like him again.’”

“He was a gentle man, but he was also a gentleman,” Peter continued. “He treated people with respect and dignity.”

“My gut feeling is that Willy Wonka wasn’t his favorite role,” Peter continued. “But that’s the role now that people across the generations remember him for. He was so quirky. You never knew what to expect from Gene. He never let on how he was going to read a line or convey an expression. That’s why the film works, because he made Wonka so unpredictable.”

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Posted to: Gene Wilder

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