David L. Wolper, whose landmark 1977 miniseries Roots captured the imagination of the country, has passed away. Roots explored an American family descended from slaves. Wolper also produced the children's classic Willie Wonka and the Chocolate Factory and the 1984 Olympic Games in Los Angeles. Wolper died peacefully in his Beverly Hills home Tuesday evening while watching television with his wife, Gloria, said spokesman Dale Olson. Wolper died of congestive heart disease and complications of Parkinson's disease. He was 82.
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—Nsenga K. Burton