Robin Williams Predicts the Future in Unaired 1991 Recording: "It’ll Be One Giant Film Corporation"

Blank on Blank Robin Williams Masks Still - H 2014
Courtesy of PBS Digital Studios

Blank on Blank Robin Williams Masks Still - H 2014

The late actor also riffed on sex faces and the role of comedians in a new animated video from PBS Digital Studios.

Thirty years ago, journalist Lawrence Grobel asked Robin Williams to predict the world in 2020 – when the comedian would be 70 years old.

“It’ll be one giant film corporation,” Williams said. “One nation, under God, indivisible, with circuits and VCRs for everyone.”

The exchange was an outtake from Williams’ January 1992 Playboy interview, and PBS Digital Studios has now edited the unused clips into a five-minute video for its Blank on Blank series, which transforms previously unheard celebrity recordings into animated shorts. “Robin Williams on Masks” is the 34th episode of the digital series, which also includes interviews with Michael Jackson, Philip Seymour Hoffman and Heath Ledger.

Grobel’s interview with Williams, taped on microcassette on June 22 and Oct. 16, 1991, also included the comedian musing on the role of comedians in society (“Comedy is there to show us we fart… to make us realize we still are part animal”) and riffing on O-faces with sound effects that defy transcription (so watch the video below).

Williams, who committed suicide on Aug. 11, also talked about his faults, which included an exhausting obsession with pleasing others: “You always want to make sure that everyone in the audience is all taken care of. That constant desire to please all the time. That can get you in some shit.”

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