Williams’s final Instagram post (above)
After news of Robin Williams’s death hit on Monday his many friends and colleagues took to social media to express their shock and grief. Williams himself was active on social media – his final post on Instagram was two weeks ago, wishing his daughter Zelda a happy 25th birthday: “Happy Birthday to Ms. Zelda Rae Williams! Quarter of a century old today but always my baby girl. Happy Birthday @zeldawilliams Love you!”
Williams’s Mork & Mindy co-star Pam Dawber shared in a statement, “I am completely and totally devastated. What more can be said?!”
“I am sick with grief,” tweeted Monty Python star Eric Idle, who appeared with Williams in the big screen fantasy adventure The Adventures of Baron Munchausen in 1988. “I can’t believe my lovely friend is gone. My heart goes out to his wife and his beloved children. He brought us so much joy and laughter.”
“Very sad, very upset, very glad I did not have to hear about this though Twitter,” wrote Mara Wilson, who played Williams’s daughter in the 1993 hit family comedy Mrs. Doubtfire. “Probably going to be taking some time off it for a while.” Meanwhile, Williams’s own daughter Zelda shared a tribute of her own with the note, “I love you. I miss you. I’ll try to keep looking up.”
Sally Field, who also appeared with the late actor in Mrs. Doubtfire, said in a statement, “He was one of a kind. There will not be another. Please God, let him now rest in peace.”
Josh Charles, who appeared with Williams in Dead Poets Society, remembered his late co-star on Twitter: “Your humor, like hot jazz, was topped by your sensitivity, compassion & kindness. Standing on my desk for you, always.”
Williams’s costar on 1991’s The Fisher King, Jeff Bridges, paid tribute on Facebook, writing, “He is a treasure chest of creativity and generosity of spirit to us all.”
Ben Stiller, who appeared with Williams in the Night at the Museum series wrote several tweets on Monday, including a remembrance of his first interaction with the star: “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…”
Jay Leno, who knew Williams before he was famous, shared in a statement (via The Wrap), “I saw him on stage the very first time he auditioned at the Improv in Los Angeles, and we have been friends ever since. It’s a very sad day.”
Chris Meloni, who starred on Law & Order: SVU when Williams made a guest appearance in 2008, posted a photo (above) along with the note, “On our wall. Very sad. #RIPRobinWilliams.”
Mira Sorvino starred with Williams in the 2004 thriller The Final Cut. She also presented the late actor with his Oscar for Good Will Hunting in 1998 — a task, she tweeted on Monday, she was “honored” to do.
Longtime friend and colleague, Chevy Chase, shared his grief and his own personal struggle: “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… I cannot believe this. I am overwhelmed with grief. What a wonderful man/boy and what a tremendous talent in the most important art of any time – comedy! I loved him.”
John Travolta, who appeared with Williams in the 2009 comedy Old Dogs, issued a statement that said, in part, “I’ve never known a sweeter, brighter, more considerate person.”
Danny DeVito, who directed Williams in the 2002 film Death to Smoochy, said, “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.”
Williams’s friend and “Hook” director Steven Spielberg said, “Robin was a lightning storm of comic genius and our laughter was the thunder that sustained him.”
Jessica Chastain recounted on her Facebook page that she went to Julliard, also Williams’s alma mater, through a scholarship he created. “Robin Williams changed my life. He was a great actor and a generous person,” she wrote.
Williams went to the preeminent arts school in New York City with the late Christopher Reeve. On Tuesday, Reeve’s family remembered Williams for his ”simple, steadfast friendship.”
In 1996, Williams starred with Bill Cosby in “Jack.” Cosby said, “I am so stunned.”
Goldie Hawn wrote, “Oh Robin…Our hearts are broken. Rest in peace darling. We loved you.”
Steve Martin also took to Twitter, saying, “I could not be more stunned by the loss of Robin Williams, mensch, great talent, acting partner, genuine soul.”
“What ever you said, he inhaled out of the air and then threw it back at you,” remembered Henry Winkler, who appeared with Williams when he was fresh on the scene on Happy Days as Mork. Winkler went on to tell The Hollywood Reporter on Monday, ”There was not one time it came out the same. There was not one time it was not truly, endlessly and fervently funny. You saw it and your mouth dropped. You couldn’t believe it. I’ve worked with a lot of people and there is and was no one quite like him.”
“Robin Williams was an airman, a doctor, a genie, a nanny, a president, a professor, a bangarang Peter Pan, and everything in between,” wrote President Barack Obama in a statement issued by the White House. “But he was one of a kind. He arrived in our lives as an alien – but he ended up touching every element of the human spirit.” The White House also shared the above photo on Instagram.
Fellow standup comedian Kathy Griffin wrote, “I met this sweet, generous & brilliant man Robin Williams in 1991. Here we are with HIS idol Jonathan Winters.
# RIP.” (See above photo)
The official Sesame Street handle tweeted a photo of Williams laughing with the note: “We mourn the loss of our friend Robin Williams, who always made us laugh and smile.”
“One of the greatest nights of my youth was spent with dear Robin Williams,” Val Kilmer shared on Twitter. “Let’s all get closer to our friends who are down, and share love.”
Ron Howard recalled Williams’s early television work on Happy Days, writing, “1st witnessed his genius as he created Mork B4 our eyes in 2 hrs on set. A Force. A Sweet Soul. A Brilliant Artist. RIP.”
James Woods shared his shock and grief on Twitter, too: “Robin’s death is an incomprehensible tragedy. There simply are no words. Blessings on his loved ones.”
“Robin Williams made the world laugh & think,” wrote Kevin Spacey. “I will remember & honor that. A great man, artist and friend. I will miss him beyond measure.”
Late night host Jimmy Kimmel chose to send a message to those who might need it along with his tribute to Williams, who died from an apparent suicide: “Robin was as sweet a man as he was funny. If you’re sad, please tell someone.”
Conan O’Brien and David Letterman also shared tributes, the former clearly shaken as he learned and shared the news while taping his Monday night show.
Record producer Quincy Jones remembered Williams, writing, “RIP to my dear brother and friend Robin Williams. The world will miss the decades of laughter that you gave all of us.”
The Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences tweeted the above photo along with the note, “Genie, you’re free,” referencing Williams’s memorable role in Disney’s 1992 animated hit Aladdin.
Evan Rachel Wood recognized that Williams was a “huge part of my childhood,” also referencing the Disney film.
“I can’t believe the news about Robin Williams. He gave so much to so many people. I’m heartbroken,” tweeted comedian and talk show host Ellen DeGeneres.
“R.i.P Robin Williams.His genius as artist & comedian will B missed & his support of R troops no doubt was much appreciated by all who serve,” tweeted Gary Sinise.
Questlove, of the hip-hop band The Roots, recalled how meaningful it was when he first met Williams at the Grammys and the Good Will Hunting actor revealed he was a fan. “Everytime I saw him afterwards he tried to top his trivia knowledge on all things Roots associated. Simply because he knew that meant everything to me.”
Two-time Oscar winner Peter Fonda remembered the late entertainer, writing, “So sad Robin Williams was a special friend and I will miss him forever.”
Fellow stand-up and Aladdin costar Gilbert Gottfried shared some lovely memories with CNN, including the last time he saw Williams at a benefit, when they ran into Mel Brooks after the show. “Robin went out of his way to tell Mel how funny I was at the benefit. He repeated some of my jokes and Mel laughed. This was once again Robin proving what a generous person he was,” Gottfried wrote.
Williams’s Good Will Hunting costar Ben Affleck wrote this on Facebook: “Heartbroken. Thanks chief — for your friendship and for what you gave the world. Robin had a ton of love in him. He personally did so much for so many people. He made Matt and my dreams come true. What do you owe a guy who does that? Everything.”
In comedian Russell Brand’s column for The Guardian about Williams, he wrote, “Robin Williams could have tapped anyone in the western world on the shoulder and told them he felt down and they would have told him not to worry, that he was great, that they loved him. He must have known that. He must have known his wife and kids loved him, that his mates all thought he was great, that millions of strangers the world over held him in their hearts, a hilarious stranger that we could rely on to anarchically interrupt, the all-encompassing sadness of the world. Today Robin Williams is part of the sad narrative that we used to turn to him to disrupt.”
Billy Crystal, best known for sharing the stage with Williams and Whoopi Goldberg during their many Comic Relief performances, simply tweeted, “No words.” Goldberg later echoed his thought with, “Billy Crystal is right…There are No words.”
Photo credits: @KathyGriffin/Twitter, @SesameStreet/Twitter, Robin Williams/Instagram, AMPAS/Disney, The White House, Sarah Michelle Gellar, David Letterman