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Watch now: Billy Crystal honours friend Robin Williams at the Emmys

Watch now: Billy Crystal honours friend Robin Williams at the Emmys

A touching tribute


Video: YouTube
Image: Time

"It's very hard to talk about him in the past because he was so present in all of our lives," says Williams' longtime friend, Billy Crystal

"He made us laugh. Hard." – Billy Crystal's opening line in his tribute to longtime friend Robin Williams at last night's Emmy Awards was effective and simple.

"I spent many happy hours with Robin onstage," said Crystal. "The brilliance was astounding. The relentless energy was thrilling. I used to think that if I could just put a saddle on him and stay on for eight seconds, I was going to do OK."

As part of the show's 'In Memoriam' section, Crystal shared an anecdote about the two comics attending Comic Relief Day at New York's Shea Stadium. 

"As genius as he was on stage, he was the greatest friend you could ever imagine," Crystal continued. "Supportive. Protective. Loving. It's very hard to talk about him in the past because he was so present in all of our lives... For almost 40 years, he was the brightest star in the comedy galaxy...[His] beautiful light will continue to shine on us forever. And the glow will be so bright, it'll warm your heart. It'll make your eyes glisten. And you'll think to yourselves: Robin Williams. What a concept."

Before a moment of silence in which the room fell dark, the show presented clips of Williams' first appearance on the Tonight Show in 1981, his 1986 special A Night at the Met and other stand-up performances.

Watch the tribute below, now:

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