Tuesday, August 12, 2014

Robin Williams has died

Robin Williams -- who first made America laugh and eventually touched "every element of the human spirit" in a remarkable range of performances -- died at his Northern California home Monday.
Williams apparently took his own life, law enforcement officials said. He was 63.

Robin McLaurin Williams 
(July 21, 1951 – August 11, 2014) was an American actor, stand-up comedian, film producer, and screenwriter.

Rising to fame with his role as the alien Mork in the TV series Mork & Mindy (1978–1982), Williams went on to establish a successful career in both stand-up comedy and feature film acting. His film career included such acclaimed films as The World According to Garp (1982), Good Morning, Vietnam (1987), Dead Poets Society (1989), Awakenings (1990), The Fisher King (1991), and Good Will Hunting (1997), as well as financial successes such as Popeye (1980), Hook (1991), Aladdin (1992), Mrs. Doubtfire (1993), Jumanji (1995), The Birdcage (1996), Night at the Museum (2006), and Happy Feet (2006). He also appeared in the video "Don't Worry, Be Happy" by Bobby McFerrin.

Nominated for the Academy Award for Best Actor three times, Williams received the Academy Award for Best Supporting Actor for his performance in Good Will Hunting. He also received two Emmy Awards, four Golden Globe Awards, two Screen Actors Guild Awards and five Grammy Awards.

On August 11, 2014, Williams was found unresponsive at his residence in Marin County, California, and was pronounced dead at the scene. According to the Marin County's coroner's office, the probable cause of death was suicide by asphyxiation, but a comprehensive investigation must be completed before a final determination is made.

The actor suffered a lifelong struggle with depression, alcohol and drugs. After starting his battle with addiction in the 1970s he once explained it this way: "Cocaine for me was a place to hide. Most people get hyper on coke. It slowed me down." He went on and off treatment for the next two decades, and then he quit cold turkey after the drug death of John Belushi, his friend. But then he fell off the wagon and very publicly went to rehab in 2006. In late June of this year, he checked himself into the Hazelden Addiction Treatment Center near Lindstrom, Minnesota, to avoid falling off the wagon again. "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,” the actor’s rep said at the time. Williams died with four movies coming out: Boulevard, The Angriest Man In Brooklyn, Night At The Museum 3, and Merry Friggin’ Christmas , for which his co-star Joel McHale told the press in July that Williams was fighting to get his life back on track: “He wore his struggles and sobriety and was very up front and candid about what he has gone through. I know he is a man who likes to win and be healthy. So him going back to rehab, I pray it all works out.”
How much can you give? The only thing I can do is be honest about who I am.
Robin Williams

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