Gene Wilder classics to play at some AMC theaters

Gene Wilder is gone but he's not forgotten, at least at AMC Theatres nationwide this weekend.

The theater chain announced Thursday it's bringing two of Wilder's most beloved films, Willy Wonka & the Chocolate Factory and Blazing Saddles, to 55 of AMC's nearly 400 theaters around the country this Saturday and Sunday evening, as a tribute to Wilder's life and career.

Wilder died this week at age 83 of complications from Alzheimer's disease. Fans worldwide have mourned since the news broke Monday.

Tickets, going for $5 per showing, and location information are available on AMC's website.

"These screenings are about honoring the life and career of a film icon," says Ryan Noonan, director of corporate communications for AMC. "The price was set as a way to provide all movie lovers the opportunity to enjoy two of his most popular films again, or for the first time, through the incomparable movie theater experience."

Willy Wonka, the 1971 musical in which Wilder played the whimsical candy tycoon of Roald Dahl's 1964 children's novel, will play at 5 p.m., and Blazing Saddles, the 1974 comedy-western that was one of Wilder’s wacky collaborations with filmmaker Mel Brooks, will play at 7:30 p.m. at the participating locations.

This is the latest theatrical response to a notable death. Earlier this year, Purple Rain came back to theaters after Prince's death. Many of the showings sold out quickly.

"We’re honored to play a part in helping Mr. Wilder’s fans, and anyone who loves cinema, experience these iconic movies and his incredible performances, on the big screen," says Noonan.

Contributing: Bryan Alexander


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