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Jessica Chastain says scholarship from Robin Williams 'changed her life'

MANILA, Philippines – Robin Williams was a friend and mentor to many. As news of his death reaches the public, one of his fans – and colleagues in the movie industry – is speaking up about how his influence helped her immeasurably.  

Oscar nominee and Golden Globe winner Jessica Chastain remembered Robin Williams just hours after news of his death broke online, saying that his financial assistance made it possible to attend the prestigious Juilliard School, and move on to a better life. 

Robin Williams changed my life. He was a great actor and a generous person. Through a scholarship, he made it possible for me to graduate college,” she wrote on Facebook.  

Post by Jessica Chastain.

“I’m the first person in my family to go to college. We didn't have a lot of money, and Juilliard is a pretty expensive school. Robin Williams is a very generous Juilliard alumnus, and gives a scholarship every two years to a student, and it pays for everything, and I got it,” she previously told Michael Shannon in Interview magazine

Williams might simply have been paying it forward. In his Reddit AMA, he talked to fans about how friend and fellow Juilliard schoolmate Christopher Reeve helped him out while they were at school together. (READ: Robin Williams' most memorable film roles)

Him being such a great friend to me at Juillard, literally feeding me because I don't think I literally had money for food or my student loan hadn't come in yet, and he would share his food with me,” he said, when asked what his best memory was of his old friend. 

Williams was found dead in his home in Tiburon, Northern California. A statement from Marin County Sheriff's Department said Williams' death appeared to be "suicide due to asphyxia." His publicist said that he had recently been battling severe depression. – Rappler.com

Editors' Note: An earlier version of this article said that Jessica Chastain was an Oscar winner. She's an Oscar nominee and a Golden Globe winner. This has been corrected. We're sorry for the error.