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Robin Williams

robin williams Born July 21st, 1952 in Chicago, Illinois, robin williams's dad was executive for Ford Motors. The family was more than comfortable, financially speaking. Robin's mother was a fashion model and so he was aware of the entertainment industry from an early age. robin williams was a solitary child, more comfortable creating worlds with his imagination than in playing with the other kids. He owned legions of toy soldiers, approximately 2000 in all. robin williams attended high school in Marin County and graduated in 1969. No actor epitomizes the cliche, "when he's good, he's real good - but when he's bad, he's real bad," better than Robin Williams. His career has been a regular roller coaster of ups and downs, critical raves and critical blasts. His exuberant, kinetic energy is legendary but is often funneled into bad projects, which not even his charming characterizations can save.

After high school, robin williams to Claremont Men's College. It was performing which was his real passion, however. On stage he was able to bring to vivid life all of his childhood imaginings. In the end, the acting bug got the best of robin williams and robin williams was soon heading off to New York, where he studied Drama under John Houseman at the renown Juilliard Institute. While studying there, he earned extra pocket money by working as a mime. Upon graduation from Juilliard, robin williams got work in comedy, where he was most at home. He got steady work as a stand-up comic, and appeared on The Richard Pryor Show. In 1977, director Garry Marshall gave robin williams his big break by casting robin williams as a bizarre alien on the hit sitcom Mork and Mindy.

Despite acclaim for his comedic abilities, big screen success was not to be found. His maiden voyage, Popeye, tanked horribly at the box office. It was not until the release of Good Morning, Viet Nam in 1987 that robin williams had a bonafide hit on his hands. The film captured his manic energy brilliantly, and robin williams earned an Oscar nomination for his efforts. A few years later, robin williams would again be nominated for an Oscar, but this time for a surprisingly effective dramatic turn in Dea d Poets Society. He had defied the odds (and his detractors) by proving he was adept at both tragedy and comedy. robin williams has been bouncing back and forth ever since, making us laugh and making us cry. He has had quite a few missteps, but always keeps plugging away. He received a third Oscar nomination for his work in The Fisher King before finally taking a trophy home for Goo d Will Hunting. For the most part however, robin williams is usually on the receiving end of critical lashing these days. Even he has admitted that he has lost some of his dramatic edge in the overly sentimental meanderings of trite material like Patch Adams. robin williams plans to make a return to his stand-up comedy roots to help get himself back on track.

On the personal front - and despite his "lovable lug" persona - robin williams has had to deal with his fair share of scandal. There was the time he was sued by a woman who claimed he had given her herpes (he claimed extortion and countersued). The case was settled out of court and the details not disclosed. He also got heat for allegedly snorting coke with actor John Belushi shortly before his fatal overdose in 1982. Apparently clean now, allegations of cocaine abuse still haunt the manic actor.

Then of course, there is the matter of his marriages. robin williams married dancer Valerie Velardi in 1978. The two had a son named Zachary. Ten years later, robin williams gave the tabloids plenty of fodder when he left his wife to hook up with his son's young nanny, Marsha Garces. The disbelief turned to scoffs of derision when it was announced that he had arranged for her to produce his next picture, Mrs. Doubtfire. Of course, the duo had the last laugh as Mrs. Doubtfire went on to be a monstrous hit. It proved that, even while in mid-life crisis, Robin Williams could still pull out a hit. Since then, the happy couple have produced two children of their own, and formed their own production company, Blue Wolf. Through all of the scandals, the box office failures and accusations that he has lost his edge, Robin Williams has remained one of America's most loved celebrities. Despite harsh criticism, people turned out in droves to see Patch Adams, and always seem willing to give the star the benefit of the doubt. He has fended off young upstarts like Jim Carrey, and remains one of America's top funnymen.

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