Legendary Actor Gene Wilder Dies at 83

The comedy great known for classic films such as "Willy Wonka & the Chocolate Factory" and "Blazing Saddles" died of complications from Alzheimer's disease, his family confirmed.
3:08 | 08/30/16

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Transcript for Legendary Actor Gene Wilder Dies at 83
celebrate the life of gene wilder. The Hollywood legend's unique blend of comedy and empathy touched thousands of fans. David Wright is here with a look back at a remarkable man who made so many laugh. Good morning, David. Reporter: Good morning, George. Nobody could panic quite like gene wilder, right? Even when he wasn't doing the full-on freakout he had such vulnerability and comic timing that you got the sense at any moment he just might lose it. I cannot function in these conditions. You make me extremely nervous. Reporter: Whether he was playing an accountant in "The producers" or the doctor in "Everything you want to know about sex." I am in love with a sheep. Reporter: Gene wilder could make you laugh without speaking a word. Oh. I see. Reporter: Married in the '80s to comedienne Gilda radner here they are on "Gma" 30 years ago. What would surprise people about you all in your private lives. I think people always expect we go home and like I sit in a chair and gene does scenes from his movies and then he sits down in a chair and I do characters and we're just laughing all the time. I think they'd be surprised at how kind of ordinary we are. We just want to have love in our home and not worry about the applause part. Reporter: When she died of cancer he set up a charity in her name. We've now learned his own health had been failing for years. He struggled with Alzheimer's but chose to keep it private. Preferring his fans to remember him in his prime. ? Come with me and you'll be in a world of pure imagination ? Reporter: As the musical and slightly menacing willy wonka or wild-eyed young Franken stein. That's Frankenstein. I beg your pardon. My name, it's pronounced Frankenstein. Reporter: Sorry. Why isn't it Frederick Frankenstein. It isn't. It's Fred kick Franken seen. You must be igor. No, it's pronounced igor. Reporter: The straight man who couldn't help but be funny. One, two, three. Reporter: Whether he was silent or paraphrasing Shakespeare. We are the musicmakers. And we are the dreamers of dreams. Reporter: According to his nephew he died holding hands with his wife of 25 years and his family hearing Ella Fitzgerald sing "Somewhere over the rainbow." Mel brooks said he blessed every film we did with his magic and he blessed me with his friendship. He will be missed. Beautiful. He wanted to keep those going. You mentioned his nephew and talked about how he reseated in recent years. He didn't want children to see him suffering with Alzheimer's. He said he couldn't -- Everybody knew him as willy wonka. He couldn't bear the idea of one less smile in the world. Wow. Thank you, David.

This transcript has been automatically generated and may not be 100% accurate.

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