Robin Williams (1951 – 2014)
Robin McLaurin Williams (July 21, 1951 – August 11, 2014) was an American actor and comedian. Starting as a stand-up comedian in San Francisco and Los Angeles in the mid-1970s, he is credited with leading San Francisco’s comedy renaissance. After rising to fame as Mork in the sitcom Mork & Mindy (1978–82), he went on to establish a career in both stand-up comedy and feature film acting.
He was known for his improvisational skills.After his film debut in the musical comedy Popeye (1980), he starred or co-starred in widely acclaimed films, including the comedy-drama The World According to Garp (1982), war comedy Good Morning, Vietnam (1987), dramas Dead Poets Society (1989) and Awakenings (1990), comedy-drama The Fisher King (1991), animated musical fantasy Aladdin (1992), drama Good Will Hunting (1997), and psychological thriller One Hour Photo (2002), as well as financial successes such as the fantasy adventure film Hook (1991), comedy Mrs. Doubtfire (1993), fantasy adventure Jumanji (1995), comedy The Birdcage (1996), and fantasy adventure-comedy Night at the Museum (2006).
In 1998, Williams won the Academy Award for Best Supporting Actor for his performance as Dr. Sean Maguire in Good Will Hunting. He also received two Primetime Emmy Awards, six Golden Globe Awards, two Screen Actors Guild Awards, and four Grammy Awards throughout his career. On August 11, 2014, Williams committed suicide by hanging himself at his home in Paradise Cay, California.It was revealed shortly after his death that Williams had been suffering from severe depression, Parkinson’s disease, and diffuse Lewy body dementia.
Words & Means
comedian: someone who entertains people by telling jokes
renaissance: a time when something becomes popular or fashionable again
improvisation: to make or do something without any preparation, using only the things that are available
thriller: a book or film with an exciting story, often about crime