"Mel Stuart, the Emmy-winning filmmaker and documentarian who tackled such serious subjects as the assassination of John F. Kennedy and mental illness but is perhaps best known for directing the whimsical Willy Wonka & the Chocolate Factory, has died. He was 83."


Many years ago in Los Angeles, through a friend of my mothers, I had the pleasure of spending an afternoon with Mel at his office taking about his work and get some advice about filmmaking. He was a character. 

If you have not seen his documentary on Man Ray for PBS American Masters series, I highly recommend you find a copy. I have included a clip below of the doc which has an interview with Mel. The last clip is a trailer from Mel's seminal 1972 concert documentary WATTSTAX.