Dennis Quaid has spoken out about his battle with cocaine addiction, admitting it was his “biggest mistake”.
The 57-year-old actor has claimed drug taking was so prevalent during the 70s that Hollywood bosses would make cocaine available to stars and incorporate it into movie budgets.
Dennis has confessed for the first time that he became so hooked on the illegal substance that he couldn’t function without taking cocaine first thing in the morning.
“My biggest mistake was being addicted to cocaine,” he said in an interview with Newsweek. “I’d wake up, snort a line, and swear I wasn’t going to do it again that day… Addiction just keeps you from living; you’re basically hiding from life.
“Cocaine was even in the budgets of movies, thinly disguised. It was petty cash, you know? It was supplied, basically, on movie sets because everyone was doing it.”
Dennis – who was previously married to Meg Ryan – began experimenting with drugs because he couldn’t handle his success.
He finally decided to quit taking drugs in the 90s, after realising his addiction was ruining his career. He began to see the toll it was taking on his life and feared he could have died within “five years” if he didn’t check into rehab.
“Coming from where I came from – lower-middle-class life, from Houston into Hollywood – and all of a sudden this success starts happening to you, I just didn’t know how to handle that,” he explained. “Doing blow just contributed to me not being able to handle the fame, which, at the time, I guess I felt I didn’t deserve. I was doing my best imitation of an asshole, trying to pretend everything was OK. Meanwhile my life was falling apart, and I noticed it myself, but I was hoping everyone else didn’t.”
Dennis is now sober and says cleaning up his life during the 90s “chiselled” him into a better person. He feels stronger after kicking his drug habit and the experience has allowed him to “appreciate” all he has in his life.
The star is happily married to former real estate agent Kimberly Buffington and the couple have three-year-old twins, Thomas and Zoe.