Robin Williams was a 'crumbling and sobbing' wreck on 'Night at the Museum' set before death

Robin Williams was a 'crumbling and sobbing' wreck on 'Night at the Museum' set before death
Robin Williams 'changed' while filming 'Night at the Museum: Secret of the Tomb', his last movie (Michael Caulfield/Getty Images, IMDb)

If you or someone you know is considering suicide, please contact the National Suicide Hotline at 1-800-273-TALK (8255).

LOS ANGELES, CALIFORNIA: Robin Williams had a very successful career, but fans often wonder how different it may have been if he had played 'The Joker' or been featured in 'Harry Potter' as he had hoped. However, he has been a source of joy for many people for a long time, and his final movie, 'Night at the Museum: Secret of the Tomb', was no exception.

Williams had difficulties behind the scenes despite the movie's success. Director Shawn Levy said that the late actor struggled and used to make late-night calls to Levy regarding his performance. During his final days, Williams had Lewy Body Dementia (LBD), which had an impact on his performance and mental abilities, as per The Things.


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Beloved actor and comedian's 'morale was crumbling'

Williams' final performance was in 'Night at the Museum: Secret of the Tomb' just before he committed suicide. With his LBD diagnosis, things changed. This indicated that the actor's mental function fluctuated throughout the day as a result of a problem with his physical abilities. The beloved actor underwent changes while working on the third final installment of the well-liked franchise, Shawn Levy, who directed the 2014 film, said, as per The Independent.


Director Levy observed some of the changes. "I would say a month into the shoot, it was clear to me — it was clear to all of us on that set — that something was going on with Robin," he said in an interview with People. "We saw that Robin was struggling in a way that he hadn't before to remember lines and to combine the right words with the performance," he added.

Levy went on to say that Williams called him multiple times and expressed doubt about his performance. "When Robin would call me at 10 at night, at two in the morning, at four in the morning, saying, 'Is it usable? Is any of this usable? Do I suck? What's going on?' I would reassure him. I said, 'You are still you. I know it. The world knows it. You just need to remember that,'" Levy continued, before adding, "My faith in him never left, but I saw his morale crumbling," Levy claimed, "I saw a guy who wasn't himself and that was unforgivable."



Robin Williams ended every day 'sobbing'

Williams was completely a different person behind the scenes and with his wife Susan Schneider. Williams' condition deteriorated while he was filming the 'Night at the Museum' sequel, said his widow. His associates said he was a pleasure to be around and entertained people for decades. But Schneider revealed another side of the comedian when she was at home.


Even at the height of his illness, Williams continued to work alongside Ben Stiller, Rebel Wilson, and Dan Stevens in Shawn Levy's 'Night at the Museum: Secret of the Tomb'. Cheri Minns, his makeup artist for the movie, shared with The New York Post in 2018 that Williams ended every day "sobbing in my arms." He once said, "I don't know how to be funny anymore," she recalled, adding that the experience was "horrible."



'Robin's Wish'

'Robin's Wish', a recent documentary examining the neurological condition the actor was dealing with before he committed suicide in 2014, covers the actor and comedian's final days. In the documentary, Williams' widow describes how her husband struggled to find answers to his health struggles before he committed suicide after being misdiagnosed with Parkinson's. Susan said that Robin had other interests and was a different man behind the scenes.

Williams was suffering from diffuse Lewy body dementia, an incurable condition that inhibits brain function when he died at the age of 63. Williams had no idea that he had LBD and this was only discovered after his autopsy. Tylor Norwood, the documentary's creator, and Schneider worked together on 'Robin's Wish', according to New York Post.


Susan Schneider and comedian Robin Williams attend The Comedy Awards 2012 at Hammerstein Ballroom on April 28, 2012 in New York City.
Susan Schneider and Robin Williams attend The Comedy Awards 2012 at Hammerstein Ballroom on April 28, 2012, in New York City (Theo Wargo/Getty Images)

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 Robin Williams was a 'crumbling and sobbing' wreck on 'Night at the Museum' set before death