Robin Williams faced ‘serious money troubles’ shortly before his death according to the Daily Mail.
He was forced to accept a string of second-rate but lucrative acting roles which insiders say made his battle with depression even tougher.
The actor had admitted that he was on the verge of bankruptcy and was relying on the success of an upcoming TV series which was then ignominiously cancelled, affecting him deeply.
Last September, Williams revealed he was having to put his huge California ranch and vineyard up for sale for £22million to cover some of his debts.
Although he was famously generous to both charities and his friends, the actor blamed his money woes chiefly on two divorces.
He divorced his first wife – Valerie Velardi – in 1988 and ended his second marriage, to Marsha Garces, his oldest child’s former nanny, in 2008 after 19 years together.
The two divorces reportedly cost him at least £12million. In addition, he agreed to pay a mistress an estimated £4million in damages in 1986, after she sued him for infecting her with herpes.
‘Divorce is expensive. It’s ripping your heart out through your wallet,’ Williams told Parade magazine last year.
Accepting work he would otherwise have shunned was one way making ends meet.
For the first time since he starred in Mork & Mindy 30 years earlier, he had to return to TV but the comedy drama series, The Crazy Ones, in which he played a comic version of Mad Men advertising executive Don Draper, was cancelled by the US network CBS in May after just one season.
‘The idea of having a steady job is appealing,’ he said last year, alluding to the TV series. The only alternative, he said, was making low budget films for little money or returning to stand-up comedy – which he also tried.
‘There are bills to pay. My life has downsized, in a good way,’ said Williams in September. ‘I’m selling the ranch up in Napa. I just can’t afford it any more.’
When The Crazy Ones was scrapped, Williams ‘slipped into a deep depression’, a source told Radaronline. ‘He felt embarrassed and humiliated. It was very hard for Robin to accept. Here he was in his 60s, and forced to take a role on television for the money.
It’s just not where he thought he would be at this point in his life.’
Yesterday a neighbour of the actor in Tiburon told MailOnline Williams appeared ‘very drawn and thin’ over the weekend.
The neighbour added: ‘He was a shell of himself, exhausted and not in the best spirits, but still the nice guy I had always known. There seemed to be something on his mind. He was not at all like his stage persona.
‘He was more quiet and down-to-earth. He listened well. He was often quiet and very private. The last time I saw him he seemed to be in a bad place emotionally.’
Williams’ generosity to others may not have helped his bank balance either. In 1996, he told Christopher Reeve, a close friend from drama school, that he would pay his medical bills after a riding accident left the Superman star paralysed. Williams was also worried about how much he would be able to leave to his three children, reported entertainment website TMZ.
It said it had obtained details of a trust that he set up in 2009 to ensure they were paid in stages so it couldn’t be squandered.