Robin Williams: Tributes paid to ‘lightning storm of comic genius’

Hollywood remembers actor found dead aged 63 at California home

Flowers and a Oscar souvenir is placed on the Hollywood Walk of Fame star for US actor Robin Williams in Hollywood, California, today. Photograph: Michael Nelson/EPA

Flowers and a Oscar souvenir is placed on the Hollywood Walk of Fame star for US actor Robin Williams in Hollywood, California, today. Photograph: Michael Nelson/EPA

Tue, Aug 12, 2014, 14:18

Oscar-winning actor and comedian Robin Williams was found dead at age 63 on Monday from an apparent suicide at his home in Northern California, authorities said.

Hollywood celebrities and many others who knew him paid tribute to Williams:

US president Barack Obama, in a statement making reference to the actor’s many roles said: “Robin Williams was an airman, a doctor, a genie, a nanny, a president, a professor, a bangarang Peter Pan and everything in between. But he was one of a kind. ... The Obama family offers our condolences to Robin’s family, his friends and everyone who found their voice and their verse thanks to Robin Williams.”

Director Steven Spielberg said in a statement: “Robin was a lightning storm of comic genius and our laughter was the thunder that sustained him. He was a pal, and I can’t believe he’s gone.”

Writer Stephen Fry said: “Devastating news about robinwilliams — knew him a little and liked him a whole lot more. A brain wired like no other and so so kind.”

Actor Danny DeVito, who worked with Williams in ‘Death To Smoochy’, said: “So sad to think about this. Hard to speak. Hard to say. Hard to take.

“All I can think about is what a joy he was to be with. I’m devastated. My heart is broken by this news.”

Actor Forest Whitaker wrote on Facebook: “The world has lost a special soul. Robin Williams touched our hearts, he gave us laughter, he gave us joy, he made us think about the impossible.

“I’m blessed to have been able to walk inside his universe. He forever changed this world with his presence. My thoughts and prayers go out to his family and to all those who hold him dear.”

Comedian Steve Martin said on Twitter: “I could not be more stunned by the loss of Robin Williams, mensch, great talent, acting partner, genuine soul.”

Actor Ben Stiller said on Twitter: “I met him when I was 13 and a huge fan and he was so kind and I watched him be kind to every fan I ever saw him with ... And with other actors he was so generous and brilliant. He made everyone feel special and equal around him even though he was the genius.”

Comedian Chevy Chase said in a statement: “Robin and I were great friends, suffering from the same little-known disease: depression. I never could have expected this ending to his life, and to ours with him. God bless him and God bless us all for his LIFE! I cannot believe this.”

Producer David E. Kelley, who created television show ‘The Crazy Ones’ starring Williams, said in a statement: “The talent was legendary. But equally inspiring, perhaps more so, was his kindness and humanity. Gentle soul who touched us all.”

Officials from Twentieth Century Fox Television, the studio that produced ‘The Crazy Ones,’ said in a statement: “Robin Williams was a comedy giant, and although we only knew him personally for a season, he was warm, funny and a true professional.”

Actor Neil Patrick Harris said on Twitter: “I am stunned and just reeling from the news of Robin Williams’ death. He brought so much joy and heart to millions ... Just, wow.”

Actor John Travolta said in a statement: “I’ve never known a sweeter, brighter, more considerate person than Robin ... Robin’s commitment as an artist to lifting our mood and making us happy is compared to none.”