On Wednesday, comedian Robin Williams did an Ask me Anything (AMA) session on Reddit, and even through text-only answers, the prolific funny man’s personality really shined through.
Williams was promoting his latest project, The Crazy Ones, which airs Thursday on CBS. Most know him from standup comedy and a number of television shows and movies, such as Good Morning Vietnam, Mrs. Doubtfire, Good Will Hunting, and Aladdin.
We’ve collected some of his best answers on everything from gaming to his favourite bands. You can read the full AMA here.
On who’s his favourite celebrity to impersonate:
“Oh my god, Jack Nicholson. He once was with me at a benefit and leaned over and said ‘even oysters have enemies.’ In a very intense voice. I responded with ‘Increase your dosage.’
Dana Carvey does my personal favourite impression of myself. It’s accurate. And kind.”
When asked whether he was scared being around Nicholson, Williams wrote, “It’s more fascinated than scared. He says things that even Buddha goes ‘…what did that mean?'”
Here’s his Jack Nicholson impression (language warning):
On how he cheered up Steven Spielberg when he was filming Schindler’s List:
“I think I only called him once, maybe twice. I called him when I was representing People for the Valdheimers Association. A society devoted to helping raise money to help older Germans who had forgotten everything before 1945. I remember him laughing and going ‘thank you.'”
On what he was wearing during the AMA:
“My god! I have on nothing but Google Glass! And I’m downloading as we speak.”
One of the reddit moderators wrote, “It’s interesting.”
On what gives him a sense of wonder, and his favourite childhood book:
“My children give me a great sense of wonder. Just to see them develop into these extraordinary human beings. And a favourite book as a child? Growing up, it was The Lion, The Witch and The Wardrobe – I would read the whole C.S. Lewis series out loud to my kids. I was once reading to Zelda, and she said “don’t do any voices. Just read it as yourself.” So I did, I just read it straight, and she said ‘that’s better.'”
On what kind of music he listens to:
“To be honest, I’m kind of challenged in terms of new music. I listen to a lot of Jazz, specifically Keith Jarrett piano solos. And for me, if you want just wonderful ballads and love songs, Tom Waits. I might also have to throw in Radiohead, but I can’t quote specific lyrics. AND PRINCE! For those special nights.”
On whether he had any behind-the-scenes stories from the set of Mrs. Doubtfire:
“Yes. One time in makeup as Mrs. Doubtfire, I walked into a sex shop in San Francisco and tried to buy a double-headed dildo. Just because. Why not? And the guy was about to sell it to me until he realised it was me – Robin Williams – not an older Scottish woman coming in to look for a very large dildo and a jar of lube. He just laughed and said ‘what are you doing here’ and I left. Did I make the purchase? No. * Did I walk away with a really good story? *Yes.”
On playing video games:
“No! I haven’t [played GTA V]. I’m still waiting for the next Call of Duty. It’s been very unusual for me because I’ve done trips overseas to Iraq and Afghanistan, and I would see guys who had just come back from patrol playing Call of Duty, and I would say ‘you’re living this stuff! And yet you’re still playing this game…’
I don’t usually play online, because getting my arse kicked by an 11 year old is very humbling!”
Here’s Williams performing for troops in Kuwait on one of his USO tours (language warning):
Business Insider Emails & Alerts
Site highlights each day to your inbox.