10 Things We Learned About Robin Williams From His Last Reddit AMA


In the last Reddit AMA some 10 months ago where Robin Williams openly and honestly answered all of his fans’ questions, we learned a lot about the actor’s likes and dislikes, and that his children still give him a sense of wonder. Williams, a Hollywood big screen veteran, is best known for his roles in “Good Will Hunting,” “Patch Adams,” “Mrs. Doubtfire,” and as the voice of Genie in “Aladdin.”

Recent reports speculate that Williams committed suicide in a residence in California on Monday, August 11, 2014. On Tuesday morning Reddit posted a notice on their homepage advising anyone with suicidal thoughts to seek help. Here are Williams’ best 10 questions and answers, which were only slightly edited for accuracy and style. 

1. What is something you’ve gotten into and gotten excited about lately? 

“My wife’s art. To realizing that painting is a full-contact art form. She came out of her art studio all day and I thought she had been attacked because she was covered in red, but it was just paint, and she had this great stunned expression… The painting was exquisite, a very dramatic landscape. And I realized that she had the same type of emotional response as I do when I perform.”

2. My favorite bit I have seen you do is the one on Golf… where did you get the inspiration for that piece? Do you play?

“From a drunken Scottish friend. I think his idea was “What the f*** is that sport” and I just took it from there. I don’t play. I was once at a driving range with my son, I hit 2 balls, and he said ‘Dad, that’s enough.’”

3.1 Who is your favorite celebrity to impersonate? What celebrity does an impersonation of you that you enjoy?

“Oh my god, Jack Nicholson. He once was with me at a benefit and leaned over and said ‘even oysters have enemies.’ In a very intense voice. I responded with ‘Increase your dosage.’ Dana Carvey does my personal favorite impression of myself. It’s accurate. And kind.” 

3.2 On a scale of 1-10, how scared are you when you’re around Nicholson?

“It’s more fascinated than scared. He says things that even Buddha goes ‘…what did that mean?’”

4. Is there a dialect/accent that’s most challenging for you? Are there any you’ve never been able to do?

“Yes. The Irish accent transitions into two or three others. It slips into Welsh, Scottish, and then it just starts to break down.”

5. According to IMDb, you frequently called Steven Spielberg during the filming of Schindler’s List to cheer him up. What was a typical conversation like?

“I think I only called him once, maybe twice. I called him when I was representing People for the Valdheimers Association. A society devoted to helping raise money to help older Germans who had forgotten everything before 1945. I remember him laughing and going ‘thank you.’”

6. Mr. Williams – you asked us what we are wearing. I’m wearing a seductive A&W T-shirt with blue jeans. Drizzled with sexy coffee I accidentally spilled. My question – what are YOU wearing?

“My god! I have on nothing but Google Glass! And I’m downloading as we speak.”

7.1 What is your favorite book/book series?

“Oh my god, Isaac Asimov’s Foundation trilogy. It’s one of the greatest books of all time, and the greatest character is The Mule.”

7.2 …I really hope you can pull some strings to make this a TV series of some kind. Imagine Robin Williams as Hari Seldon.

“Oh my god, that’s a great reference! Thank you for that shoutout. He is one of the great characters of science fiction.”

8. What is your favorite book? What were your favorite things to do as a child? And what still gives you a sense of wonder?

“My children give me a great sense of wonder. Just to see them develop into these extraordinary human beings. And a favorite book as a child? Growing up, it was The Lion, The Witch and The Wardrobe – I would read the whole C.S. Lewis series out loud to my kids. I was once reading to Zelda, and she said ‘don’t do any voices. Just read it as yourself.’ So I did, I just read it straight, and she said ‘that’s better.’”

9. What was it like working with Jonathan Winters? 

“It was a joy. I believe I said in the Academy Awards it was like dancing with Fred Astaire but it was even better than that, because being around him, he would perform for anybody. There was no audience too small. I think I once saw him do a cat for a beagle.

And I had the same experience watching the Tonight Show with my dad. Watching and laughing at Jonathan with my dad helped us become closer, very much so. My favorite Jonathan Winters one liner is ‘Have you ever undressed in front of a dog?’”

10. If you were trapped inside Jumanji again and could only bring three items with you which three items would you bring?

“A machete. Flamethrower! And a nightlight (oh, that’s right, I was ten, so maybe I should lose the flamethrower and exchange that for a Ronson lighter).”



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