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Ron Perlman says he understands how Robin Williams felt when he committed suicide

"Clinical depression killed my brother and almost got me," Perlman reveals.

By Karen Butler
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Ron Perlman says he understands how Robin Williams felt when he committed suicide
Cast members Danny Trejo (L) and Ron Perlman attend the premiere of the animated motion picture romantic comedy "The Book of Life" at Regal Cinemas L.A. Live in Los Angeles on October 12, 2014. Storyline: Manolo (Diego Luna), a young man who is torn between fulfilling the expectations of his family and following his heart, embarks on an adventure that spans three fantastic worlds where he must face his greatest fears. The couple are expecting twins in the coming months. UPI/Jim Ruymen | License Photo

NEW YORK, Nov. 2 (UPI) -- Ron Perlman says he has battled clinical depression in the past and understands how his fellow actor Robin Williams felt when he tragically took his own life last summer.

Best known for his roles in the TV shows Beauty and the Beast and Sons of Anarchy, and in the films Hellboy, Pacific Rim and The Book of Life, Perlman spoke about Williams during a New York Comic Con panel where he promoted his new memoir Easy Street last month.

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"As you go through life, things don't happen like you plan them," Perlman told the hundreds of fans gathered to hear him talk.

"The main thing you learn how to do is realize you are going to hurt, you are going to fall down, you are going to get banged up, you're going to lose people, you're going to lose friends. You're going to make mistakes, maybe lose all of your money," the 64-year-old actor explained. "A lot of bad [expletive] is going to happen to you and some of it -- a lot of it -- can destroy you, unless you learn how to manage your way though it and there are also these various ways, things that you can hold onto and learn how to do to get the management skills to do that. ... This is all the [expletive] I ran into. It's called Easy Street because it was anything, but easy, although if you look at me and you look at my resume, you would think: 'This [guy] is on Easy Street. He's got a gazillion dollars, he's got no problems, never had a bad day in his life.' And that's probably what they said about Robin Williams. I know exactly how he felt at the moment he did that. I mean, I know. You'll read the book and you'll find out why I know."

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Asked by a fan in the audience what he would recommend to someone suffering from depression, Perlman replied: "Clinical depression killed my brother and almost got me. With me, as you'll see in the book, the circumstances of getting out were really kind of extraordinary and unique. But I would say, generally, it is nothing to [expletive] with. You better go get on some medication because it is chemical. Clinical depression is a chemical imbalance and it can only be addressed chemically to buy you enough time to start to see some light because all you see is just dead-end roads. You don't see any hope. You don't see any reason to hang around. That's what clinical depression is and it's very diffcult for you to singularly pull yourself out of that."

So, why did Perlman decide to pen his autobiography now?

"Because tomorrow is not guaranteed," he said. "I'm getting to this age where I feel like it's time to maybe chronicle how blessed this life has been. ... There is no reason why the things that have happened to me have even happened, so I am trying to identify all of the forces that went into this series of miracles that has been my life."

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Perlman went on to say he would like to share his experiences in the hope they will be "helpful and useful to this next generation of actors."

He also joked about how candid the book is.

"I name names. I get down. I get funky. I had to get bodyguards when this [expletive] came out. I'm kidding. No, I'm not," he quipped.

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