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Robin Williams Bio and Movies

Updated on August 12, 2014
"You're only given a little spark of madness. You mustn't lose it." Robin Williams
"You're only given a little spark of madness. You mustn't lose it." Robin Williams

Professional Career

Robin Williams was born July 21, 1951 in Chicago, Illinois. His mother was a former model and his father was an executive at Ford Motor Company. Believe it or not Williams used to describe himself as a shy child. In fact, Williams once stated that he didn't break out of his shell until he began participating in his high school's drama program.

However, the shy boy that Williams once was seemed to evaporate and he would be one of twenty total students accepted into the freshman class at Julliard in 1973, as well as Christopher Reeves. Williams would leave Julliard in 1976, and begin his ascent to super stardom.


Williams began his television career as part of the cast on the "The Richard Pryor Show", he would then follow this role up with his casting as Mork, an alien, on a episode of "Happy Days" in 1978. Williams made such a lasting impression with the producers, crew, and fans of "Happy Days" that Robin soon received his own television show.


Williams's hit spin-off show "Mork and Mindy" has a successful run from 1978-1982. While shooting to television stardom on "Mork and Mindy" Robin began touring the country with his stand up comedy act. He had three HBO comedy specials and co-hosted the 58th Academy Awards.


Even though Williams found much success on the television screen, he is best known for his roles on the big screen. His first film was in 1977 and it was titled "Can I Do It Til I Need Glasses." The movie was not a big hit but Williams would follow up with much bigger and better roles.


Williams went on to star in the movie "Popeye" in 1980, followed by a few more roles, until portraying one of his more well known roles in the movie "Good Morning, Vietnam" in 1987. Robin was nominated for an Academy Award for Best Actor for his portrayal of Adrian Cronauer in the "Good Morning, Vietnam" and won a Golden Globe Award for the same role.


Williams went on to star in many amazing films such as "Dead Poets Society" (1989), "Hook" (1991), Mrs. Doubtfire (1993), "Jumanji" (1995), "Jack" (1996), "Good Will Hunting" (1997), "Flubber" (1997), "Patch Adams" (1998), "What Dreams May Come" (1998), "Insomnia" (2002), "Night At The Museum" (2006), "RV" (2006), and "Night At the Museum 2" (2009) just to name a few of his most memorable roles.


However, one of Williams's most iconic roles was the voice of the Genie in the cartoon "Aladdin." Williams will forever be in the hearts of children in the world as the fun, energetic, and compassionate Genie.

Williams and his Third wife.
Williams and his Third wife.

Personal Life

In 1978, Robin Williams married his first wife Valerie Velardi. Their son Zachary Williams was born April 11, 1983. However, during his first marriage Williams found it difficult to remain faithful and had an affair with a cocktail waitress. His first marriage ended in 1988. In 1989, Williams married Marsha Garces, his son Zachary's nanny, while she was pregnant with their first child. Williams and Garces had two children together Zelda Rae Williams and Cody Alan Williams. Garces and Williams were married until 2008, when Gaces filed for divorce.

Williams married his third and final wife in 2011. The two were married when Williams passed in August 2014.

Addiction

Robin has struggled with addiction throughout his life, his earliest addictions being to cocaine and alcohol in the 1970's and the 1980's. However, Williams is quoted as saying the death of his close friend, John Belushi, and the birth of his first child made him want to stop taking drugs and drinking alcohol.

However, between 2003 and 2006 Williams had a relapse and began drinking once more but he promptly received treatment trying to be pro-active and stop the addiction from taking hold in his life once more.

Williams wins his Oscar for Good Will Hunting
Williams wins his Oscar for Good Will Hunting
One of the last photos taken of Williams in the summer of 2014, while he was in another state for rehab.
One of the last photos taken of Williams in the summer of 2014, while he was in another state for rehab.

Recently

Williams recently began a stint on the television show "The Crazy Ones" starring opposite of Sarah Michelle Gellar. The show premiered on September 26, 2013. However, after a strong start the show lost power and after only one season was cancelled.


In June of 2014, Williams once again checked himself into a rehab facility to continue supporting his sobriety. In June of 2014, Williams's publicist released this statement about Robin being back in a treatment facility: "After working back-to-back projects, Robin is simply taking the opportunity to fine-tune and focus on his continued commitment, of which he remains extremely proud."



His Death August 11, 2014

At the age of 63, Academy Award winner for the movie "Good Will Hunting", Robin Williams was found in his home unconscious. The following statement was released by police officials : "On August 11, 2014, at approximately 11:55 am, Marin County Communications received a 911 telephone call reporting a male adult had been located unconscious and not breathing inside his residence in unincorporated Tiburon, California. The male subject, pronounced deceased at 12:02 pm has been identified as Robin McLaurin Williams." The coroner investigating the death believes the actor committed suicide due to asphyxia.


Robin's media representative spoke on CNN stating that Robin had bee suffering from severe depression of late.


New reports released on August 12, 2014 state that Williams did indeed hang himself from a closet in his home in California. Williams used a belt and wedged the belt between the door and the door jam. Superficial wounds were also found cut across his wrist and a pocket knife was near his body. Williams was found by his personal assistant, but sadly it was much too late, it is believed that Williams hung himself in the night and was not found until nearly noon the next day.


At the time of Robin's death he had many movies in the making. He had filmed "The Angriest Man in Brooklyn" with Mila Kunis, "Merry Friggin' Christmas", and "Night at the Museum's Secret of the Tomb" with Ben Stiller and Rebel Wilson.

Top 10 Robin Williams Performances

Stars Reactions to Williams's Death

Steve Martin - "I could not be more stunned by the loss of Robin Williams, mensch, great talent, acting partner, genuine soul"


Miley Ray Cyrus- "I can't take the Robin Williams news. I've never cried over someone I've never met but I can't stop"


Lindsay Lohan- "Mr. Williams visited me the first day of filming The Parent Trap. I will never forget his kindness. What an enormous loss. My condolences."


Kathy Griffin - "I met this sweet, generous & brilliant man Robin Williams in 1991. Here we are with HIS idol Jonathan Winters. #RIP"

Ellen DeGeneres -"I can’t believe the news about Robin Williams. He gave so much to so many people. I’m heartbroken."


David Boreanaz -"So sad to hear the news about Robin Williams. Just shocked. Pure #Genius. The laughs are tears and prayers to his Family. #RIP"


Andy Cohen -"Can you think of anybody more full of life than Robin Williams!?!? So sad."



Ross Mathews-"Shocked & saddened by the loss of Robin Williams. I met him twice & he was such a gentleman & a genius."



Kristin Chenoweth-"No no. Don't let this be. RIP my dear Robin"



Henry Winkler-"Robin Williams was like no other ..To watch him create on the spot was a privilege to behold.. Robin you are an angel now !!! REST IN PEACE"



P!nk-"My prayers+sad heart are with Robin Williams' family tonight. Only met him once, but it was one of the most enjoyable moments of my life RIP"


Cher-"He was Sweet LOVELY,Man. He ran high voltage,Mind Always Going, It was who he was.I Know Well..Many X's from High There is Only Low.So Sad"


Joel McHale-"RIP @robinwilliams You were one of the very best that ever was. You were one of my heroes. #RobinWilliams"

John Cusack- "RIP mr Williams - beyond great talent -such a kind and lovely person"



Steve Carell-"Robin Williams made the world a little bit better. RIP."



John Stamos -"The first autograph I ever got: Dear money, send mom. Robin Williams"



JARED LETO-"Thank you to the beautifully original + brave artist that is #RobinWilliams. You taught us how to stand on the edge, fearless, + shine."



Emmy Rossum -"7 years old w/ a single mom the first time I saw #MrsDoubtfire. Made me feel better about being from an unconventional family. Love is love."


Eva Longoria-"#RIP Robin Williams...you will be remembered by many..."



Rob Schneider-"Without #Robin Williams there wouldn't have been a Comedy scene in San Francisco, Robin paved the way. He was the best of all of us"







Williams in  "Good Morning, Vietnam"
Williams in "Good Morning, Vietnam"

My Personal Goodbye

Robin Williams was an actor that the audience couldn't help but love. He brought a warmth and joy to the screen. However, his dramatic roles also had an amazing depth to them. One of the most influential movies that I have ever watched was Robin Williams's "What Dreams May Come." His portrayal of a husband and father who have lost everything was beyond heartbreaking but his performance was also laced with hope, love, and faith. His performance made me hope that their was indeed another world after this one. That we all will go on and find our perfect ending at the end of this life. Williams was obviously dealing with a lot of hidden demons in his life, as well as severe depression. The mind can do terrible things to an individual, and sadly he must have felt his only way to safety, love, and freedom was through death. I hope that his movie "What Dreams May Come" is partly true. I hope that Robin has finally found his peace in his happily ever after, and is not restricted to a world of pain like that in his movie "What Dreams May Come." I pray that if their is an after life that some consideration is given to poor souls who think there is not other way out except suicide.

Robin Williams brought love and laugher into so many people's life. I hope he was given a reprieve and he is finally safely home. Thank you Mr. Williams for the hours of moments I spent laughing, crying, and feeling your performances. My children's laughter has been a direct effect from you and your amazing capabilities. My children have been amazed and enthralled by you in so many of your movies and you have given us beautiful family moments that can never be replaced.


I hope you are at peace and hopefully there is a beautiful after life and you are still making them laugh!


Improv What Williams Was So Good At

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