A comic genius dies in solitary misery

Los Angeles :  Oscar-winning actor-comedian Robin Williams, who gave memorable and inspiring performances in ‘Good Will Hunting’, ‘Dead Poets Society’ and ‘Good Morning, Vietnam’, has died of an apparent suicide by hanging. He did not leave a note.

He had battled depression and an addiction to cocaine and alcohol for decades. Williams had not been seen in public since his birthday three weeks ago. His distraught wife Susan Schneider said in a statement, ‘‘I have lost my husband and my best friend, while the world has lost one of its most beloved artists and beautiful human beings. I am utterly heartbroken.’’

Friends and colleagues such as Steven Spielberg, Steve Martin and Danny DeVito all took to social media to express their grief and offer condolences to Williams’ third wife and three children.

President Obama issued a touching tribute to the actor and comedian, and 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. He arrived in our lives as an alien — but he ended up touching every element of the human spirit.

‘‘He made us laugh. He made us cry. He gave his immeasurable talent freely and generously to those who needed it most — from our troops stationed abroad to the marginalized on our own streets. 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.’’

David Steinberg, his manager of 35-years, said, “Nobody made the world laugh like Robin Williams. My brother, my friend, my soul mate, I will miss you.” Williams, a four-time Oscar nominee, won a supporting actor Oscar for his portrayal of a wise and morose psychologist in ‘Good Will Hunting’.

Actor Henry Winkler said it was “unimaginable that this is the reality today, that this incredible human being, incredible, delicate, funny, dramatic human being is gone.”

Fans among jihadists, too

Even ISIS militants fighting in Iraq and Syria greeted the death of Hollywood actor Robin Williams with bizarre Twitter outbursts declaring their love for his 1995 film ‘Jumanji’. As news broke of the 63-year-old’s death in an apparent suicide, Islamist militants and their supporters took to social media to discuss the merits of Williams’ long career in the film industry. The expressions of love for his fantasy adventure film Jumanji were tempered somewhat by a number of terrorists condemning the late actor for jokes he made about jihadists during a filmed stand-up performance that has been uploaded on YouTube.

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