Editor, Variety.com @s_oldham
Robin Williams was in the early stages of Parkinson’s Disease at the time of his death, his wife Susan Schneider said in a new statement.
“Robin’s sobriety was intact and he was brave as he struggled with his own battles of depression, anxiety as well as early stages of Parkinson’s Disease, which he was not yet ready to share publicly,” said Schneider.
Williams was found dead Monday morning at his Northern California home. Police said the 63 year-old actor hanged himself.
“It is our hope in the wake of Robin’s tragic passing, that others will find the strength to seek the care and support they need to treat whatever battles they are facing so they may feel less afraid,” she added.
“Robin spent so much of his life helping others. Whether he was entertaining millions on stage, film or television, our troops on the frontlines, or comforting a sick child — Robin wanted us to laugh and to feel less afraid. Since his passing, all of us who loved Robin have found some solace in the tremendous outpouring of affection and admiration for him from the millions of people whose lives he touched. His greatest legacy, besides his three children, is the joy and happiness he offered to others, particularly to those fighting personal battles.”
Williams had publicly acknowledged his struggles with substance abuse and had recently entered a rehabilitation program in Minnesota for what was described at the time as a way to “fine-tune and focus on his continuing commitment” to sobriety.
His wife’s new statement said the actor was not using drugs or alcohol leading up to his death. Williams married Schneider, his third wife, in 2011.
The actor’s family has been eager to diffuse any rumors or media speculation since his death on Monday, working with the Marin County Sheriff’s Office to announce Williams’ suicide three hours after being found, as well as provide as many details as possible.
Results from the autopsy of the late Oscar-winner were announced on Tuesday. Toxicology results will be available in two to six weeks.
Police: Robin Williams’ Death Due to Hanging
AUGUST 12, 2014 | 11:29AM PT
Comedian Robin Williams died of hanging on Monday morning, said Marin County sheriffs.
Lieutenant Keith Boyd made the announcement at a Tuesday press conference at the Marin County Sheriff’s Office in San Rafael, Calif.
Boyd said that Williams, 63, was suspended with a belt around his neck. He was clothed and rigor mortis had set in. Police said the actor was found by his assistant in a seated position in his home in Tiburon, just north of San Francisco.
There were also superficial wounds found on one of his wrists, said Boyd, indicating that Williams may have tried to slash his wrist before the hanging. A pocket knife was also found nearby the scene.
An investigation is ongoing into his death, which was due to asphyxia. His publicist noted that the actor had been struggling with depression as of late, and recently entered a 12-step rehab for drug abuse.
Williams was last seen alive by his wife on Sunday night.
The investigation is ongoing. A toxicology report will be conducted but will take two to six weeks to be completed.
Help us, help People like Robin Williams before it's too late! "Robin Williams found dead... possible SUICIDE."
Robin Williams Found Dead in Possible Suicide
BEN GABBE/GETTY IMAGES
AUGUST 11, 2014 | 03:55PM PT
Veteran film and television comedic actor Robin Williams was found dead on Monday. He was 63.
The cause of death is believed to be suicide via asphyxiation, according to the coroner’s office in Tiburon, Calif. He was found in his home.
According to his publicist, who confirmed the news, the actor had been battling depression of late and recently entered 12-step rehab stint for drug abuse.
His wife Susan Schneider said in a statement, “I am utterly heartbroken. On behalf of Robin’s family, we are asking for privacy during our time of profound grief. As he is remembered, it is our hope the focus will not be on Robin’s death, but on the countless moments of joy and laughter he gave to millions.”
The Marin County Sheriff’s Office received a 911 call from Williams’ residence at 11 a.m. on Monday reporting the actor had been found unconscious and was not breathing. The paramedics arrived shortly after at 12 p.m. and pronounced him dead at 12:02 p.m.
Williams was last seen alive by wife at 10 p.m. on Sunday night.
An autopsy is scheduled for Tuesday, Aug. 12, at the Marin County Coroner’s Office.
Williams is best known for both comedic and dramatic roles in movies including “Good Will Hunting,” for which he won a Best Supporting Actor in 1997. In addition, he won several Emmys, Golden Globes.
Williams’ film career was bookended by TV roles including his breakout role on the ABC sitcom “Mork & Mindy” in 1978. He returned to TV on CBS last season, “The Crazy Ones.”
Born in Chicago to a former model and an auto-industry executive, Williams graduated from Juilliard School in 1973. His career exploded in the late 1970s on the strength of both his stand-up comedy act and “Mork,” which channeled his antic stream-of-consciousness style into the role of an alien on Earth.
He took his career to the next level with a bevy of lead parts in critically acclaimed movies beginning in the late 1980s, including “Good Morning, Vietnam,” “Dead Poets Society” and “The Fisher King.” All of them garnered Oscar nominations but it wasn’t until his supporting turn in “Hunting,” from a screenplay by Ben Affleck and Matt Damon, that he earned his only win, in 1998.
For all his success as a comedy star, “Hunting” proved Williams had a flair for dramatic roles as well in his role as a nurturing psychotherapist. Williams also scored in another dramatic role as a man of medicine, playing neuroscientist Oliver Sacks in the 1990 movie “Awakenings.”
But Williams will be remembered best for the parts that exhibited his improvisational comedy chops, which he delivered with near manic intensity. His genius for over-the-top characters was displayed in the early 1990s everywhere from the cross-dressing nanny in “Mrs. Doubtfire” to even animated roles, like the genie in “Aladdin.”
He is survived by his wife and three children.
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"We Prayed a Lot": Hollywood Actor Reveals the Scary Event That Restored and Redefined His Faith in God 4
Aug. 1, 2014 7:52am
Actor Chris Pratt revealed in a recent interview with People magazine that he and his wife, actress Anna Faris, went through an extremely difficult time when their son, Jack, was born nine weeks premature in August 2012 — an experience that he said restored and redefined his faith in God.
With their infant spending the first month of his life in intensive care, Pratt, 35, and Faris, 37, found themselves clinging to family, friends and prayer.
“We were scared for a long time. We prayed a lot,” Pratt told People. “It restored my faith in God, not that it needed to be restored, but it really redefined it.”
Pratt, who starred in “Parks and Recreation” and “Guardians of the Galaxy,” said that he looks back at pictures of Jack that were taken at the time and realizes just how difficult the situation was.
“It must have been jarring for other people to come in and see him, but to us he was so beautiful and perfect,” he added.
Pratt went on to say that Jack is entirely healthy and happy now as he approaches his second birthday, calling the child “amazing” and a “fighter.”
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January 2014, it was brought to my attention that there was a underground church in LA. Of course my curiosity got the best of me and I indulged myself into research on this church. I soon found out that a huge majority of this church was made out of the entertainment industry. Now I needed to know more.
As I continued to look into this church, I soon found out that it started 2 years ago with 6 guys in a house. Then quickly turned into over 700 people meeting in random hotel ballrooms in Beverly Hills. I had to know what's going on here since the call of God on my life was to the entertainment industry in Canada and beyond.
The Lord then began a stirring in my spirit about this church and how it could apply to Canada. So, with Canada standing firm with over 500,000 fulltime film industry people, not including indo-Canadian Bollywood, independent filmmakers, and music videos. We're probably looking at a near 1,000,000 industry people. The question is, is there a need for these people? Apparently LA does. So why not Canada?
Well, with a powerful divorce rate at an incredible 98% and over 300 deaths in the acting community due to overdose of drugs. There's an obvious need for the love of Jesus.
Canada will start with Hollywood North, in Vancouver British Columbia, then Toronto, Montreal and more, to see underground churches thriving, showing that there is a safe place to be and not judged. So, pray for us as we start to build God's Kingdom here in Canada.
To get started we will need 65 Monthly donors within the next 16 weeks. Please pray and ask how much to give.
(to donate, go to our support page)
Jamie has been in FILM since 1994, and is a full time minister of Jesus Christ to the FILM INDUSTRY