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Robin Williams ‘would still be alive’ if film star friend Christopher Reeve ‘hadn’t died’ in 2004

Robin Williams “would still be alive” if Christopher Reeve hadn’t died in 2004, Glenn Close has claimed.

Williams, who died by suicide in 2014, was close friends with Superman actor Reeve, who died from cardiac arrest in 200, nine years after a horse riding accident left him paralysed.

A new documentary, titled Super/Man: The Christopher Reeve Story, explores many facets of Reeve’s life, including his friendship with comedian Williams, whose death followed his struggles with a neurodegenerative disorder that was misdiagnosed as Parkinson’s.

Unbeknownst to Williams, he was suffering from Lewy body dementia, an incurable brain disease, which was only revealed following his autopsy. Many of the actor’s friends and colleagues have recalled that Williams’ deteriorating health led to an intense depression that left him “sobbing” over worries he no longer knew “how to be funny”.

However, according to Close, Williams might not have died when he did if Reeves had still been alive at the time.

Speaking in the documentary, which was acquired by Warner Bros discovery for $15m (£1.8m) after its Sundance Film Festival premiere earlier this month, Oscar-nominated actor Close says (as highlighted by People): “I always felt that if Chris was still around, Robin would still be alive,” says Close in the film.

This is not the first time Close has expressed this belief.

ET News reported in 2017 that, while speaking at the Christopher & Dana Reeve Foundation‘s annual charity gala, Close described Williams and Reeves’s “connection” as “the stuff of legend.

“It not only endured, but became a life-giving force sustaining them both,” she said, while recalling how, during her time filming The World According to Garp with Williams, Reeves “would literally swoop in, piloting his own plane, scoop Robin up, and away they would fly for the weekend”.

Close continued: “On Sunday, late afternoon, Chris would swoop back in and deliver Robin back – I have to say a little worse for wear.”

Christopher Reeve and Robin Williams photographed six months before Reeve’s death in 2004 (Getty Images)
Christopher Reeve and Robin Williams photographed six months before Reeve’s death in 2004 (Getty Images)

The actor said the pair were “on top of the world” when they spent time together, adding: 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.”

There is currently no release date for Super/Man: The Christopher Reeve Story.

If you are experiencing feelings of distress, or are struggling to cope, you can speak to the Samaritans, in confidence, on 116 123 (UK and ROI), email jo@samaritans.org, or visit the Samaritans website to find details of your nearest branch.

If you are based in the USA, and you or someone you know needs mental health assistance right now, call the National Suicide Prevention Helpline on 1-800-273-TALK (8255). This is a free, confidential crisis hotline that is available to everyone 24 hours a day, seven days a week.

If you are in another country, you can go to www.befrienders.org to find a helpline near you.