Celebriety: Gary Oldman
In my Celebriety post about Daniel Radcliffe, I referenced a conversation Radcliffe had with his Harry Potter costar Gary Oldman about drinking too much. As Gary Oldman has gone from getting arrested for drunk driving with Keifer Sutherland to getting sober in 1995 and going so far as to meet his (now ex) wife in Alcoholics Anonymous, it seemed appropriate to do a six degrees of sobriety exposé on him.
What He Was Like
I’ve never been shy of coming forward about that. But for someone who was falling down [drunk]. . . . I don’t remember making Scarlet Letter, to be honest with you. I know I did it ’cause I’m in it.
I used to suffer from adrenaline. It was called Absolut.
I’m not a lad. I’ve never been one. I’ve played up and enjoyed the image because that doesn’t do any harm. But I got arrested 5 years ago  for drunken driving and I’ve never been able to shake it off.
I drank for about 25 years getting over the loss of my father and I took the anger out on myself. I did a good job at beating myself up at sometimes. I don’t drink anymore but my alcoholic head occasionally say’s different.
It’s been said that alcoholics are egomaniacs with low self – esteem. It’s the prefect description. Being larger than life and yet your pride is crushed with self- loathing.
I am by nature sort of a loner. I kind of like my own company . I don’t have a big circle of friends. I never liked parties or going to bars. At times that’s proven quite problematic, because I live in my own head.
I was working and I was functioning and I was doing all those things that I do. I looked forward to it [going on a binge]. It was a treat. Until a couple of days in.
I never thought of going to the off-license and getting 2 litres of vodka. I’d always check into a hotel even if I lived 2 blocks from it. I’d get a suite,but because I couldn’t have people downstairs thinking I was an alcoholic, I would take all the glasses and leave little bits in them. I would get ashtrays and puff all the cushions up and turn the TV up. I’d order a bottle of wine, vodka and tonics and beer for all these imaginary people at this fake party, sign for it and proceed to drink it all – I once drank 18 grand in 3 days. Then I would wake up in my clothes on the bed, not remember anything and check myself out.
Why He Quit
One thing that made me go into rehab was a sense of my own mortality. Another was my tongue. I used to wake up and it would be a vile green colour.
My drinking was out of control. My personal life was at a low point and I felt like I was trapped in a whirlpool which was sucking me away.
I had to come to terms with the fact that I was addicted to alcohol. I was just worn out.
Some bottoms are high, some are low. Sometimes people have to go to the gutter, lose everything before they can turn around and say, `I have a problem.’
I finally knew I had to get help to survive so I did something about it.
Who Got Him Sober
It’s you and God, basically.
You’ve got to want to kick it for yourself. You’ve got to learn that you want sobriety for you, yourself, not for any other reason.
Demi [Moore] was one of the influences for getting me straight. When we filmed The Scarlet Letter together I detoxed all over her. She said – You’re sick, and you’re going to go away when this movie’s done to get better. And I said, No I’ve got this to do, I’ve got that to do. Making all these excuses. And she said – No, you’re in a bad way and you’re going to die soon if you carry on like this.
There’s a saying I picked up from Anthony Hopkins [his co-star in Hannibal]: what other people think of me is none of my business. I don’t give a fuck.
What Recovery Was Like
That’s the biggest, hardest thing to do, the hardest thing I’ve ever done — more than anything.
What He’s Like Now
You know what, I don’t care [why I’m an alcoholic]. I was honestly and truly delivered from it. I am very, very lucky. I guess. I would have liked it to have been otherwise, but there we are. I mean, twelve years I’ve been sober. And so glad. I don’t regret any of it, I’m just glad it’s all behind me.
Sobriety is one of my great accomplishments. That and my kids. They really go hand in hand.
Sources for the quotes:
Because famous people are sober too, just like me and you
Posted on November 9, 2013, in Alcoholism, Celebriety, Recovery and tagged alcohol, Alcohol Recovery, alcoholic, alcoholism, Celebriety, famous sober people, Gary Oldman, Gary Oldman recovery, Gary Oldman sober, Recovery, sobriety. Bookmark the permalink. 15 Comments.