Late actor Robin Williams has been celebrated at a private tribute ceremony attended by his family and friends.
The ceremony took place on September 27 at the Curran Theatre in San Francisco, according to Hollywood Reporter.
Hundreds of guests attended, including Billy Crystal and Whoopi Goldberg, and Robin Williams’ wife and children.
Robin Williams, 63, killed himself at his home in California last month. He had been treated for depression.
The life of Robin Williams has been celebrated at a private tribute ceremony attended by family and friends (photo Reuters)
At the ceremony, there was music and video tributes.
Stevie Wonder performed, accompanied by the Glide Ensemble and Change Band from the Glide Memorial Church in San Francisco.
Other attendees included close friends, one-time co-stars and directors including Bette Midler, Ben Stiller, Christine Taylor, George Lucas, Danny De Vito, Sarah Michelle Gellar, Gus Van Sant, Jeff Bridges and Eddie Izzard.
Following the tribute, guests went to the nearby Westin St Francis Hotel for a reception.
After Robin Williams’ death, his publicist said he had been “battling severe depression”, and his wife said he had been in the early stages of degenerative neurological disorder Parkinson’s disease.
Robin Williams was famous for such films as Good Morning Vietnam and Dead Poets Society and won an Oscar for his role in Good Will Hunting.
In a recent interview, Scottish comedian Billy Connolly said he thinks Robin Williams tried to say goodbye during their last phone call before committing suicide last month.
Billy Connolly told The Telegraph that he and the late actor frequently told one another that they loved each other during phone conversations, and last one was no exception.
“I never stopped it and he never stopped telling me. As a matter of fact, I thought afterwards he tried to say goodbye to me, because he got very luvvie towards the end. It’s fanciful but that’s what I told myself,” Billy Connolly said.
Billy Connolly said he thinks Robin Williams tried to say goodbye during their last phone call before committing suicide
“On the last phone call he said, <<I love you like a brother>> and I said, <<I know you do>> and he said, <<Are you sure you know?>> and I said, <<Yes>>. Robin worried about everything.”
Robin Williams was found dead in his California home on August 11. A coroner determined his death was “a suicide due to asphyxia.”
Although his representative stated Robin Williams had “been battling severe depression of late”, Billy Connolly remembered his friend as a “happy comedian”.
“He was not always depressed,” Billy Connolly clarified.
“He was a complicated man, but a beautiful person. He was a joy.”
A few months before Robin Williams committed suicide on August 11, the actor sent out a hopeful message to a terminally ill fan.
According to New Zealand’s Sunday Star-Times, an ill 21-year-old woman named Vivian Wallace caught Robin Williams’ attention earlier this year.
The New Zealand-based Vivian Wallace was diagnosed with lung, bowel, and liver cancer in January and made a five-item bucket list, which included a desire to marry her love Jack, see her daughter Sophie’s first birthday, and to meet Robin Williams before she became too sick to do so.
Vivian Wallace was unable to make it to the US to spend time with Robin Williams, but the actor connected with her by recording a video message for her.
Robin Williams sent out a hopeful message to terminally ill fan Vivian Wallace a few months before his suicide (photo Getty Images)
It was recently revealed that Robin Williams was diagnosed with his own serious illness before his death, as his wife, Susan Schneider, said in a statement last week that he was in “the early stages of Parkinson’s Disease.”
“Hi Vivian, it’s Robin Williams here, saying hey girl,” the comedian says in the video.
“What’s going on down there in New Zealand? Sending all my love to you, Jack, and Sophie. Mark this off your bucket list.”
Ever the comedian, Robin Williams goes on to do his best Matthew McConaughey impression, emulating the actor’s trademark twang and saying: “I said, hey, hey, hey, what’s goin on, what’s goin on, it’s all right, it’s all right, it’s all right. I’m just channeling Matthew McConaughey.”
“Much love to you, baby,” Robin Williams finishes, blowing a kiss to Vivian Wallace.
Vivian Wallace’s husband, Jack, told the Sunday Star-Times that the video meant a lot to his struggling wife, and added that the family is “just enjoying the time we have together” and plans to “take things a day at a time”.
Susan Schneider has revealed that her late husband Robin Williams was suffering from the early stages of Parkinson’s disease at the time of his death.
Susan Schneider said Robin Williams had been sober but “not yet ready to share publicly” his struggles with Parkinson’s.
She added that the actor had also been suffering from anxiety and depression.
Robin Williams was found dead in an apparent suicide in his home on Monday. He was 63.
Police said Robin Williams died of asphyxia due to hanging.
Susan Schneider has revealed that her late husband Robin Williams was suffering from the early stages of Parkinson’s disease at the time of his death (photo Getty Images)
“His greatest legacy, besides his three children, is the joy and happiness he offered to others, particularly to those fighting personal battles,” Susan Schneider said in a statement, adding her husband’s sobriety was “intact”.
“It is our hope in the wake of Robin’s tragic passing that others will find the strength to seek the care and support they need to treat whatever battles they are facing so they may feel less afraid.”
Parkinson’s disease is a degenerative neurological disorder.
It is believed that the disease is brought on by a mixture of genetic and environmental factors, but the exact cause is still unknown.
Parkinson’s symptoms can include tremors and other uncontrollable movements, impaired balance and co-ordination, stiffness, slowness of movement, loss of smell, a decline in intellectual functioning, and speech and swallowing problems.
It is estimated to affect about five million people worldwide and usually, but not always, occurs in old age. The statement did not specify when Robin Williams had been diagnosed.
In the past, Robin Williams had talked and even joked about his struggles with alcohol and drugs and had returned to rehab to “fine tune” his sobriety earlier in the year.
Susan Schneider was the third wife and now widow of late actor Robin Williams.
Graphic designer Susan Schneider and Robin Williams tied the knot October 23, 2011, after two years of dating, at the luxurious Meadowood Resort in the Napa Valley town of St. Helena, California. The couple honeymooned in Paris.
Robin Williams said at the time, of Susan Schneider: “I’m the luckiest man in the world… Being with a comedian, living with a comedian, is like keeping a chimp for a pet. You know we’re kind of cute but after a little a while, (you get thrown out). So if you find someone who goes, <<OK I really like you>>, You go, <<You like me?>> She’s gorgeous and so sweet. Oh, she’s beautiful.”
Robin Williams was previously married to Valerie Velardi, with whom he has son Zak, and to Marsha Garces, with whom he has two children, daughter Zelda and son Cody.
Susan Schneider, now 51, met Robin Williams shortly before he had heart surgery in mid-2009 when she nursed him back to health at his California home.
Susan Schneider was the third wife and now widow of late actor Robin Williams (photo Getty Images)
She was trained professionally as a graphic designer and for the past two decades she has been passionate about painting and her works of art sell for a lot of cash.
She said she is mostly captivated by nature, emotions and the beauty of people.
Susan Schneider went on to pursue studies in graphic design during her college years. After a few years in the design program at UCLA she was eager to return to her native Marin County. She received her Bachelor of Arts in Graphic Design from California College of the Arts in 1989. She had the fortunate opportunity to work beside several prestigious Bay Area designers and ultimately began her own company.
Susan Schneider has not only served local schools with her design talents, but she has also helped raise funds by donating her paintings at school auctions. She developed and designed the fundraising brand “Can Do!” for the Dixie School District education foundation.
She completed the new design for the Miller Creek Middle School logo. She is a member of the Marin Catholic Patrons of the Arts wherein she assists with graphic design and with raising funds for the school’s arts program.
Through her business, Critical Eye Design, Susan Schneider continues doing design projects, primarily creating logos and identities. She is works on painting commissions, as well as developing her own work for exhibits.
Susan Schneider and Robin Williams’ residence was the actor’s house in Sea Cliff, a neighborhood in San Francisco, California.
Robin Williams’ children paid tribute to the late actor saying that “the world will never be the same” without him.
Among heartfelt tributes to her father, daughter Zelda Williams said: “One of his favorite things in the world was to make you all laugh.”
The 25-year-old actress added she would “never understand” how Robin Williams could “not find it in his heart to stay”.
Police in California confirmed that 63-year-old Robin Williams took his own life at his California home.
Marin County Sheriff’s Lt. Keith Boyd said Robin Williams had been treated for depression and killed himself by hanging.
Robin Williams’ eldest son Zak said in the wake of his death: “Yesterday, I lost my father and a best friend and the world got a little greyer.”
Robin Williams with former wife Marsha Garces, daughter Zelda and son Zak
Cody, the youngest child of Robin Williams, added: “I will miss him and take him with me everywhere I go for the rest of my life, and will look forward, forever, to the moment when I get to see him again.”
Robin Williams’ former wife, Marsha Garces, added to a tribute already made by his wife Susan Schneider.
“My arms are wrapped around our children as we attempt to grapple with celebrating the man we love, while dealing with this immeasurable loss,” she said, referring to Zelda and Cody.
Robin Williams was remembered on The Tonight Show on Tuesday night, on which he made numerous fast-talking, frenetic appearances starting with his debut in 1981.
Host Jimmy Fallon called Robin Williams “one of a kind – he was one in a million”.
Jimmy Fallon added: “He was the Muhammad Ali of comedy.”
Disney paid tribute to Robin Williams via Twitter with specific reference to his role as the genie in Aladdin, calling him a “true Disney legend and a beloved member of our family”.
“He was an incredible actor and a comic genius and will always remembered for bringing some of the world’s favorite characters to life,” they added.
Robin Williams was famous for films such as Good Morning Vietnam and The Fisher King and won an Oscar for his role in Good Will Hunting.
Robin Williams got married for the third time last October after vowing not to tie the knot again following two failed unions, but he took the plunge again last evening as he and his new wife Susan Schneider lit up The Comedy Awards together.
Robin Williams, 60, paraded his younger partner around at the event in New York City, leaving onlookers impressed with his lady’s chic.
Graphic designer Susan Schneider, 47, donned a beige frock which showed off her toned limbs as she posed with her other half inside the Hammerstein ballroom.
Susan Schneider teamed the dress with coordinating peep toe heels, an envelope-style clutch bag and gold accessories.
Robin Williams, who wed Susan Schneider on October 23 last year in St. Helena, California, was honored with the Icon Award at the bash.
In his acceptance speech, Robin Williams called himself “one of the luckiest (bleeps) in show business, with the possible exception of Ryan Seacrest”.
Robin Williams paraded his new wife Susan Schneider at The Comedy Awards in New York
Fellow funny guests included Elisha Cuthbert and Eliza Couple who did a spot of presenting with Adam Pally, who donned a giant slice of bread over his head.
While both blondes sported black frocks, Elisha Cuthbert was noticeably more elegant than her co-presenter who flashed too much flesh in a plunging cowl neckline dress with see through pleated skirt.
Actress Jessica Williams, Kristen Scheel and Amber Nash joined Bridesmaids stars Wendi McLendon-Covey and Maya Rudolph.
Maya Rudolph looked pretty with her brown hair pulled up into a half ponytail, but sported a rather unflattering black shapeless dress with heels.
Wendi McLendon-Covey, who played one of the bridesmaids looked striking in a hot pink number which she teamed with black heels.
The latter’s former Saturday Night Live colleague Amy Poehler also attended with husband Will Arnett who stars in Up All Night.
Former Friends star Matthew Perry, Tracy Morgan and Ty Burrell graced the gold carpet in traditional suited attire.
However, funnyman Reggie Watts stuck out from his peers as he went for the scruffy look, throwing a scarf over his bushy locks and wearing khaki trousers with a hooded top and nail polish.
Bridesmaids won best comedy film with Oscar nominee Melissa McCarthy winning the best actress gong.
NBC’s Parks and Recreation won best comedy series, with its star Amy Poehler winning best actress, while Modern Family’s Ty Burrell took best TV actor.
Robert De Niro took to the stage to make an introduction about Don Rickles’ career before the legendary comic was presented with the Johnny Carson award.
He was followed by Robin Williams, who began a stand up comedy career in the last 1970s before going on to star in TV show Mork and Mindy.
Robin Williams has discussed the first time he saw his in an interview shortly after saying “I do”, Robin Williams said: “I kept thinking, <<She’s so beautiful>>, but I also had the feeling that I knew her.
“I said: <<Don’t I know you?>> I know it sounds like a bad pick-up line. But it’s true.”
Robin Williams says Susan Schneider gave him a fresh perspective on life following a divorce from his second wife of 19 years, Marsha Garces, mother of two of his children, Zelda, 22, and Cody, 19.