Mrs. Doubtfire director Chris Columbus got candid about the beloved 1993 classic at the SF Film Awards on Monday
Chris Columbus, who famously directed the Robin Williams and Sally Field classic Mrs. Doubtfire, is opening up about why the film has never had a sequel.
While speaking to SF Gate at the SF Film Awards on Monday, Columbus, 63, discussed the award-winning movie, which was set and filmed in San Francisco, as well as his friendship with the late Williams, who died by suicide in 2014. He was 63 years old.
“It’s impossible. It’s just impossible,” Columbus said of anyone else playing one of Williams’ most iconic roles of his career. “I just was reading a lot of reviews, ironically, today and about the Broadway show [which opened in New York this week]. And this guy who’s playing him [Rob McClure] is supposedly very energetic and phenomenal. But he’s no Robin. Robin was one-of-a-kind.”
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Director Chris Columbus and Robin Williams on the set of ‘Mrs. Doubtfire’. Everett Collection
While many film crews and casts go their separate ways after production wraps, Columbus told the outlet that he and Williams remained close throughout the years. “We became very good friends,” Columbus said. “…We spent every weekend together, going to comic book stores and hanging out.”
More than a decade after the film first premiered, Columbus said that he and Williams had started thinking about a sequel to the beloved family film, but they had scrapped the script they had originally come up with.
Years later, the idea came up again, and Columbus and Williams were ready to get rolling. “The last time I met with Robin before he passed away was about the Mrs. Doubtfire sequel,” Columbus said. “We had a script, and it was a great script. Robin was prepared to do it. And then, unfortunately, he passed away.”
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Lisa Jakub, who starred alongside Williams in the film and played his eldest daughter, opened up to Yahoo! Entertainment in May about the lasting impact the comedian made on her — particularly while she was struggling with her mental health when she was a teen.
“Robin was everything that you would hope he would be, and he was very open and honest with me about his issues with anxiety and depression,” Jakub said. “I was able to share with him that anxiety was something that I struggled with, and he would talk to me about mental health issues in a way that 14-year-olds aren’t usually used to adults being really open about those sorts of personal experiences with them.”