Glenn Close Says Robin Williams Might Still Be Alive if Christopher Reeve Was Still Around

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By: ScreenGawk Staff | Published: Feb 07, 2024

Robin Williams tragically took his own life in 2014. The actor who made the whole world smile sadly struggled with depression for years.

Glenn Close attends the 2019 Time 100 Gala/Robin Williams arrives at the premiere of Magnolia Pictures' "World's Greatest Dad"

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But his friend and fellow actor Glenn Close recently said that she believes if beloved actor Christopher Reeve, who passed in 2004, had lived, Robin Williams would still be with us today.

The Life-Long Friendship Between Reeve and Williams

Anyone who knew either Christopher Reeve or Robin Williams knew how important their friendship was to them both.

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Actors Christopher Reeve and Robin Williams pose backstage at the People's Choice Awards, March 1979

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Williams and Reeve met while attending Juilliard in New York City in the early 1970s. And the rest, as they say, was history. They remained extremely close for the next thirty years.

What Glenn Close Had to Say About the Friendship

In an interview for the recent documentary Super/Man: The Christopher Reeve Story, Close said, “Their friendship, their connection, is the stuff of legend. It not only endured, but became a life-giving force sustaining them both.”

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Robin Williams and Christopher Reeve Attending a Broadway Show in New York City in March 1982

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And continued, “They were living the kind of fast and crazy life that our business can hand to you if you become a wildly famous phenomenon, practically overnight.”

Both Reeve and Williams Had Incredible Careers

“A wildly famous phenomenon” would certainly apply to both Christopher Reeve and Robin Williams, as the two became some of the most well-known and cherished actors on earth.

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24-year-old American actor Christopher Reeve plays the comic-book hero as he mends a broken railway track in a scene from the film "Superman"

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Superman: The Movie. Reeve went on to play the beloved superhero in three follow-up films. And while other actors have since revived the role, to many, Reeve will always be considered the one and only Superman.

Christopher Reeve’s Tragic Accident

Sadly, just 17 years after he first became Superman, Christopher Reeve was thrown from a horse while competing in an equine event in Virginia.

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At the Premier of New South Wales Christopher Reeve in Sydney bringing hope to the thousands of Australians living with paralysis

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From that day on, Reeve was completely paralyzed from the shoulders down, and the actor lived the rest of his days in a wheelchair, using a ventilator to breathe.

Robin Williams Went from Stand-Up Comedian to International Star

Meanwhile, Robin Williams started his career as a stand-up comedian in the late 1970s. And many say that he got his big break on the ABC’s sitcom Mork & Mindy as the decade turned.

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Robin Williams circa 1980 in New York

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By the 1990s, Williams was a bonafide superstar. He won the Academy Award for Best Supporting Actor in 1997 for his part in Good Will Hunting and was nominated for three Oscars for Good Morning, Vietnam, Dead Poets Society, and The Fisher King.

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Robin Williams Brought Joy to People Around the World

From Patch Adams to Mrs. Doubtfire, the genie in Disney’s Aladdin, and Peter Pan in Hook, Robin Williams was known not only for his comedy but for his ability to bring joy through each and every character he played.

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Robin Williams visits a sick child in a scene from the film 'Patch Adams,’ 1998

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But off camera, Williams was struggling with his own happiness and mental health. After he took his life in 2014, it became public knowledge that the actor struggled with severe depression for years.

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Robin Williams Always Tried to Make People Happy

Robin Williams famously said, “I think the saddest people always try their hardest to make people happy because they know what it’s like to feel absolutely worthless and they don’t want anyone else to feel like that.

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Actor Robin Williams poses with actor Christopher Reeve, wife Dana Reeve, and son Will at the screening of "House Of D" during the 2004 Tribeca Film Festival May 7, 2004

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And while he dedicated his life to doing just that, it’s said that Christopher Reeve was one of the few people on earth who could make Williams happy.

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Close Said that Williams and Reeve Used to Fly Off Together for the Weekend

In 1982, when both Williams and Reeve were working tirelessly in Hollywood, Glenn Close reported that the two were virtually inseparable and would fly off every weekend together.

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Glenn Close attends the 2nd Annual Academy Museum Gala at the Academy Museum of Motion Pictures on October 15, 2022

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Close explained, “On Friday evenings, Chris would literally swoop in, piloting his own plane, scoop Robin up, and away they would fly for the weekend.” Then he, “would swoop back in and deliver Robin back” to work.

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Christopher Reeve Passed Away in 2004

Of course, after Reeve’s accident in 1995, he could no longer fly Robin away for a boys’ weekend. However, the two remained incredibly close.

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American actor Christopher Reeve, New York, New York, 1978

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And in 2004, when Christopher Reeve passed away after having a heart attack, the loss hit Robin Williams extremely hard.

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Williams Could Share His Feelings with Reeve

In 1998, Christopher Reeve wrote an autobiography about his amazing life and equine accident called Still Me, and in it, he discussed his relationship with Williams.

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Robin Williams appears onstage during MTV's Total Request Live, 2006

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Reeve wrote, “Robin was able to share his real feelings with me, and I always did the same with him. This has remained true for twenty-five years.”

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Williams Would Still Be Alive if Reeve Had Lived

Because of their incredibly close friendship, Reeve and Williams were really more like brothers. And Glenn Close believes wholeheartedly “that if Chris was still around, Robin would still be alive.”

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Robin Williams gives Christopher Reeve a kiss on the forehead at the Tribeca Film Festival in 2004

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Of course, Robin Williams had struggles of his own, and it’s impossible to know for sure. But just maybe, if he had his best friend to talk to, the beloved actor would have found a way to carry on.

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