Belfast Telegraph

Wes Bentley: Drugs impacted my career

Wes Bentley has discussed how little he cared about his work when he was in the grip on his heroin addiction.

The actor struggled with fame after he appeared in 1999's American Beauty. He descended into heroin addiction and worked only sporadically. The 34-year-old star will freely admit he is not proud of any of the work he produced during that period.

"I wasn't bringing my A game to any of them," he told The Hollywood Reporter. "I don't know if I was bringing my B game. I just kind of didn't care and [was] coasting."

Looking back, Wes is ashamed that he fed his addiction rather than accepting offers to work with some of the biggest names in the business, such as Tony Scott and Tim Burton.

"I put up such a wall that I didn't even go and meet with these great directors whom I respected and admired so much," he explained.

Wes felt totally unprepared for fame and believes he was too young to comprehend what was happening. He started dabbling with drugs as an escape and claims to have developed a problem with heroin "in a matter of days".

He never went to rehab to help get over his problem as he didn’t have enough money. It was hearing a fellow actor's story about getting sober which made him realise he needed to change and the star began going to meetings.

Wes is now clean and is getting his career back on track. He portrayed Seneca Crane in The Hunger Games and has won a role on Ryan Murphy's new pilot for HBO called Open. The actor also appears in Christopher Nolan's new release Interstellar and has no qualms about expressing how lucky he feels.

"I've been given this second chance, and I'm going to do everything I can with it. And with Chris Nolan giving me an opportunity, I'm working with people that I can really learn from," he explained.

"I would definitely love to do a straight-up comedy, like a Judd Apatow movie [or] the whole Seth Rogen group. I love the Coen brothers' sense of humour… For so many years, I took everything so seriously. Life could have been a lot more fun."

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