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Robin Williams

On August 11, 2014, 63-year-old Oscar-winning American actor Robin Williams was found dead in his residence just outside Tiburon, California.

MOSCOW, August 12 (RIA Novosti) - On August 11, 2014, 63-year-old Oscar-winning American actor Robin Williams was found dead in his residence just outside Tiburon, California.

According to the statement by the Marin County Sheriff’s Office, the probable cause of his death is suicide due to asphyxiation.

As his representative Mara Buxbaum said on Monday, the actor was suffering from severe depression. Since 2006, Williams has made at least two trips to rehab for drugs and alcoholism treatment and also underwent a heart surgery.

Robin McLaurin Williams was born on July 21, 1951, in Chicago, Illinois. His father, Robert Fitzgerald Williams, was a senior executive at Ford Motor Company, and his mother, Laura McLaurina, was a former model.

Williams grew up in Bloomfield Hills, Michigan, and Woodacre, California. He studied political science at Claremont McKenna College but left after getting a full scholarship at the prestigious Juilliard Drama School, which he attended alongside with Christopher Reeve.

In his student years, Williams was working as a waiter and, later, performed as a stand-up comedian in nightclubs.

In 1974 he was invited to play Mork, the alien in the “Happy Days” television series and the subsequent “Mork & Mindy” television sitcom.

His big screen debut was the 1977 comedy “Can I Do It ‘Till I Need Glasses?” but his true breakthrough was the 1987 comedy “Good Morning, Vietnam” in which Williams played a US sergeant working in Saigon as a DJ for the Armed Forces Radio Service. The role saw Williams win a Golden Globe Award for Best Actor as well as his first Academy Award nomination.

Over his career, Williams was nominated for four Oscars, winning Best Support Actor for his role as a therapist to a troubled math genius in 1997 “Good Will Hunting.” “Oh man, this might be the one time I’m speechless,” he said in his Oscar acceptance speech, thanking his colleagues, his second wife Marsha and, especially, his father.

Among his most celebrated films are “Dead Poets Society” (1989), “The Fisher King" (1991), Disney cartoon “Aladdin" (1992) where he voiced the genie, “Mrs. Doubtfire" (1993), “Jumanji" (1995), “What Dreams May Come" (1998), “Bicentennial Man" (1999), "One Hour Photo" (2002) and the “Night at the Museum" (2006 and 2009).

Another three Williams movies, “Night at the Museum: Secret of the Tomb”, Christmas comedy “Merry Friggin’ Christmas” and British comedy film “Absolutely Anything,” where Williams had a voice role of Dennis the Dog, are currently in post-production.

Williams also went on a number of stand-up comedy tours and, in 2002, took part in his own one-man show “Robin Williams: Live on Broadway.”

The actor was married three times and had three children: Zachary (1983), Zelda (1989) and Cody (1991). He married his third wife, graphic designer Susan Schneider, on October 23, 2011.

Williams participated in numerous charities, supporting the St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital for years. He was also a video games fan, naming two of his children after game characters, and enjoyed road cycling.

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