'Fonzie' Recalls Robin Williams' TV Debut: 'He Was a Miracle'
Before 'Mork & Mindy' came a cameo on 'Happy Days'
By Newser Editors, Newser Staff
Posted Aug 12, 2014 10:45 AM CDT
This 1978 file photo originally released by ABC shows Robin Williams on the set of ABC's "Mork & Mindy."   (AP Photo/ABC, File)

(Newser) – Robin Williams fans know that the TV show Mork & Mindy launched him to national fame. But bigger fans know that he first played his alien character in an episode of Happy Days. Last night, Henry "the Fonz" Winkler told Rachel Maddow on MSNBC that it was clear from the start that the young, unknown Williams was something special. Some snippets, as noted by Raw Story:

  • Little rehearsal: Williams got brought in on a Wednesday, and the show shot on Friday. Didn't matter. "No hyperbole: You knew you were in the presence of somebody very special—of greatness."

  • Jaw-dropping: "It was not chutzpah. It was not nerve. It was his soul, it was the way he was put on the Earth. You said something to him, he sucked it in, and he blew it out, and it came out with such originality and so powerfully, your jaw dropped."
  • Kind, too: "He was a miracle. I'm not kidding. It took your breath away. And how was he when he was just talking to you? As quiet and as gentle as the breeze. No matter when you saw him, no matter how long it was, you were first met with a hug. He talked to you like you were the only human being in the world at that moment."
Watch the full clip at MSNBC or read other tributes.

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Showing 3 of 13 comments
Aug 12, 2014 5:44 PM CDT
The Fonz must be very depressed from doing those reverse mortgages and knowing he helped rip off the eldery.
Aug 12, 2014 5:02 PM CDT
Thank you for saying such lovely things about him, Mr. Winkler! I think Robin would be very pleased. RIP Robin Williams
Aug 12, 2014 2:38 PM CDT
robin was a younger johanthan winters,he was his role model an we lost him not long ago too.