When Williams signed on for this animated film, it marked one of the first times a legit, serious actor took the time for a voice actor role. But, Williams loved taking on roles for kids, and he made Genie one of the most recognizable (and hilarious) characters in Disney history. His contribution led the film to be one of Disney’s biggest of the VHS era.
Does it get any better than Hook? Starring Williams in one of his greatest roles, Hook found the actor as the grown-up Peter Pan, who gets pulled back into Neverland for one last adventure. Williams brought such a range of emotions to the character’s arc, and when he found his inner child, we did, too.
Another one of Williams’ animated voice roles, this early 1990s (and mostly forgotten these days) flick had Williams in the role of the hilarious fruit bat Batty Koda. It was a wild adventure, and much like his Aladdin contribution, Williams’ character provided the heart and soul of the flick.
Where it all started. Williams’ quirky portray of this sitcom alien was his first major role and it helped solidify him as a household name in comedy. It gave him a chance to hone all those skills, from physical comedy to full-on weirdness. Sure, its admittedly a bit dated, but Williams is still hilarious as Mork.
There were a lot of things wrong with this bloated sci-fi epic, but Williams’ portrayal of a domestic robot servant named Andrew was not one of them. Williams’ performance was anything but robotic, as he portrayed the ‘droid and took him through the entire range of emotions as he becomes a part of the family. One of Williams’ best performances, though not exactly in the best movie.
In one of Terry Gilliam’s greatest, Williams was a tour de force as he helped lead Jeff Bridges’ Jack Lucas on a mission to find life, love and the Holy Grail. It’s dark, heart-breaking and a positively fantastic tale. If you need a quick reminder for why Williams is such a beloved actor, this will do it.
What better role for a guy who liked to act like a kid than a character who became trapped in a boardgames as a child and never really grew up? Yeah, it’s as awesome as it sounds. Jumanji was a wild romp, and Williams was the heart and soul that kept all the wild animals and twisty plot mechanics anchored in this modern classic.
This remake of a classic kid’s flick had no business being this fun, but Williams took on the role of a mad scientist who creates an uncontrollably gooey goo and made it into a film kids would tear apart in the VHS players. It could be slapstick at times, but Williams always played it for fun.
In one of Williams’ more modern roles, he is the comedy anchor in this kid-friendly film series. The movies are about what you’d expect from kiddie fare, but Williams makes it fun, and his loud and proud Teddy Roosevelt is the perfect pal for Ben Stiller’s hapless security guard.
Oftentimes, most folks forget this one is even in the catalog — but it’s well worth a watch. Williams is joined by Jim Caviezel and Mira Sorvino in this sci-fi thriller, which follows Williams’ character who helps edit memory implants. But, he gets a lot more than he bargained for with one job, and winds up embroiled in a deepening conspiracy. It’s a stretch for Williams’ style, but he pulls it off.
The story of a man who dies and goes to a vibrant, gorgeous heaven is an ambitious pitch — but Williams pulled it off with aplomb, and made of the most stunning films in cinema history in the process. He brought depth, human and everything in-between to this film, which is arguably a sometimes overlooked classic.