The film world was shocked this afternoon by the sudden tragic loss of the great Robin Williams, who reportedly took his own life, according to the Marin County Sheriff Office's coroner division in Tiburon, Calif. He was found in his home.
The 63-year-old comedian was known for his early television work, such as his breakout role in "Mork & Mindy" and his roles in films including "Good Will Hunting," for which he won an Oscar for Best Supporting Actor in 1997. Williams also received two Emmy Awards, four Golden Globes, two Screen Actors Guild Awards and five Grammy Awards. He was also nominated for an Academy Award for playing an English teacher in "Dead Poets Society" and for playing a homeless man in "The Fisher King."
Williams' publicist Mara Buxbaum issued the following statement: "Robin Williams passed away this morning. He has been battling severe depression of late. This is a tragic and sudden loss. The family respectfully asks for their privacy as they grieve during this very difficult time."
Williams' wife, Susan Schneider, also released a statement to news outlets: "This morning, I lost my husband and my best friend, while the world lost one of its most beloved artists and beautiful human beings. 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."
According to the coroner's office, "An investigation into the cause, manner, and circumstances of the death is currently underway by the Investigations and Coroner Divisions of the Sheriff’s Office. Preliminary information developed during the investigation indicates Mr. Williams was last seen alive at his residence, where he resides with his wife, at approximately 10:00 pm on August 10, 2014. Mr. Williams was located this morning shortly before the 9-1-1 call was placed to Marin County Communications. At this time, the Sheriff’s Office Coroner Division suspects the death to be a suicide due to asphyxia, but a comprehensive investigation must be completed before a final determination is made."
Early in his career, Williams was addicted to cocaine, but said he quit after the overdose death of his friend John Belushi. Williams entered a rehab in 2006 when he returned to drinking after 20 years of sobriety, and in July, he pursued ongoing 12-step treatment at a Minnesota facility.
Williams' film career includes memorable roles in "Mrs. Doubtfire," "Good Morning, Vietnam," "Awakenings," "Deconstructing Harry," "Patch Adams," "Insomnia" "The Birdcage," "The World According to Garp," "Hook" and "One Hour Photo." He also provided the voice of the Genie in "Aladdin." Recently, Williams starred in "The Angriest Man in Brooklyn," which marked his return to the big screen in a leading role after "World's Greatest Dad" in 2009. He also recently appeared in Dito Montiel's "Boulevard," and starred in the CBS series "The Crazy Ones."