Robin Williams

Howard Stern Regrets Not Apologizing In Time To His Now-Deceased Guest For Their Forgettable Interview

Howard Stern believes his interview with one iconic guest could have gone much differently, and regrets never being able to apologize.


  •  Howard Stern regrets his past conduct during interviews, including his aggressive questioning of Robin Williams about his personal life.
  •  Stern wishes he had focused more on Williams’ career during the interview to have a more compelling conversation.
  •  Stern attempted to apologize to Williams but was unable to reach him before the actor’s tragic death. He feels remorse for not apologizing in time.


Howard Stern is an iconic radio personality, well-known for being a shock jock. He’s also one of the richest radio personalities in the world. The radio host has had numerous celebrity guests throughout his career. Stern has also been vocal about certain regrets he’s had over the years, including his conduct during some of his interviews.

During his interview with actor and comedian Robin Williams, the radio host asked the comedian about a scandal, instead of Williams’ iconic career. Williams tragically took his own life in 2014. Howard Stern has discussed having regrets for never getting the chance to apologize to Robin Williams for their forgettable interview.

Howard Stern Regrets Attacking Robin Williams On His Divorce From His Ex-Wife

Robin Williams in Good Morning Vietnam
Via: Buena Vista Pictures

Howard Stern has interviewed numerous celebs over the years, getting them to reveal intimate details about their personal lives. Earlier in his career, the host didn’t hold back, and didn’t mind offending guests. For example, Mariah Carey seemed insulted by Stern objectifying her during an uncomfortable interview.

One interview Stern regrets is his interview with Robin Williams. The comedian is one of several celebrities Stern feuded with.

“Possibly my biggest regret was my interview with Robin Williams. When Robin came on the show in the early nineties, I spent the entire time badgering him about how he had divorced his first wife and remarried his son’s former nanny. I was attacking the guy, and he was justifiably furious with me. Years later, I realized I finally needed to apologize,” Stern revealed, per CBS.

Stern realized that he and Williams could have had a compelling conversation in which the Aladdin actor might have revealed interesting details about his career.

Instead, he questioned Williams about a cheating scandal, which made their interview forgettable compared to what it could have been. Stern has said he regrets how he questioned Williams, and wishes he’d been able to apologize.

“Some people in my audience would say, ‘Man, you don’t kiss anybody’s a**’. It ain’t about kissing anyone’s a**. It’s about, ‘S***, I love this guy.’ I want to tell him what he did for me when I was lonely and couldn’t find a friend. If I saw him in a movie or even Mork & Mindy he just brought some g****** pleasure into my life, which is the whole reason I got into radio. I wanted to bring people pleasure,” per Entertainment Tonight.

Howard Stern Regrets Not Focusing On Robin Williams’ Career

Robin Williams looking emotional
Via: Instar

There have been moments Stern got his interview subjects to really open up, and had he gone in a different direction, Stern could have had an iconic interview with the star.

“Rather than say to Robin Williams, ‘My God, you’re here,’ and celebrate an amazing talent and the beauty of that guy’s career, he walks in and I start in, ‘Hey, you’re f****** your nanny,'” Stern added. “Bam, sledgehammer. Sock him right in the f****** head. A******. Me, not him,” said Stern, per ET.

Looking back, the radio host realized that at the time he focused on the wrong thing – Williams’ scandal. Stern revealed it “brings him to tears” when he thinks about the missed opportunity.

“I’ve learned there was a way to talk about what was going on in Robin Williams’ personal life. I could’ve expressed to him the beauty of Robin Williams. Who knows what he would have revealed? Who knows what impressions he would have broken into? It brings me to tears to imagine what that moment could have been like,” said Stern.

Stern revealed on his radio show that it wasn’t his intention to upset the comedian, but that was his approach during interviews at the time, per Salon.

“I asked questions that perhaps went into areas that he had enough of… I think my whole demeanor and attitude was just s*****. I wasn’t trying to be mean to Robin Williams. I was just trying to be provocative and interesting for the audience, and doing what it is that I thought had to be done. And I was an immature a******. And so that always haunted me…”

Although Stern wanted to apologize for how he’d acted during their interview, he wasn’t able to get in touch with the comedian in time to tell him.

Howard Stern Attempted To Contact Robin Williams To Apologize

Howard Stern radio host looking worried
Via: Getty

Howard Stern feels remorse for how he acted during some of his past interviews, including when Robin Williams was a guest. He also regrets never apologizing to Williams before he took his own life. He tried contacting the actor, but Stern didn’t get the chance to apologize in time.

“I also have a regret about Robin Williams that haunts me. I was so angry at the world. I love Robin Williams and yet if he came into my studio, I had to act like I didn’t love him. I’d be, ‘F*** you.'”

Stern has also said that he’d tried to reach out to Williams at one point, wanting to apologize for their interview. “I had this idea that I gotta call him and apologize. I started to put it in process and see if he would take my call, but he killed himself. I get chills when I tell you,” Stern revealed, per Entertainment Tonight.

“I was in the midst of tracking down his phone number, and the next day he died. I’m still filled with sadness over his loss and remorse for my failure to reach out sooner,” per CBS.

Stern wanted to apologize for his forgettable interview with Robin Williams, and regrets not apologizing in time. Per Salon, Stern commented on his show, “This was a guy who should have been celebrated.”

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