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20 Things You Never Knew About Gene Wilder

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'The Producers' (Embassy Pictures)
The Mel Brooks Connection
In 1963, Wilder was cast alongside Anne Bancroft in a production of Mother Courage and Her Children. She would introduce Wilder to her boyfriend at the time (and future husband) Mel Brooks, an aspiring screenwriter. This connection would eventually lead to Wilder's first leading role in a major motion picture, in The Producers (1968), which Brooks wrote and directed.