Robin McLaurin Williams (July 21, 1951 – August 11, 2014) was an American actor and comedian. Born in Chicago, Williams began performing stand-up comedy in San Francisco and Los Angeles during the mid-1970s, and is credited with leading San Francisco's comedy renaissance. After rising to fame playing the alien Mork in the sitcom Mork & Mindy (spun off from Happy Days), Williams established a career in both stand-up comedy and feature film acting. He was known for his improvisation skills and the wide variety of memorable character voices he created. Williams has been called the funniest person of all time.