Aaron Sorkin: Philip Seymour Hoffman Heroin Death Saved 10 Lives

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Acclaimed television and film screenwriter Aaron Sorkin says that Philip Seymour Hoffman's shocking death from heroin abuse probably saved lives.

Yes, you read that correctly.

"Phil Hoffman and I had two things in common," writes Sorkin. "We were both fathers of young children, and we were both recovering drug addicts."

Hoffman died Sunday at age 46. He first met Sorkin on the set of the 2007 movie Charlie Wilson's War, for which Sorkin had penned the screenplay.

"On breaks during rehearsals, we would sometimes slip outside our soundstage on the Paramount lot and get to swapping stories," Sorkin recalls.

"It's not unusual to have these mini-AA meetings. People like us are the only ones to whom tales of insanity don't sound insane. 'Yeah, I used to do that.'"

"I told him I felt lucky because I'm squeamish and can't handle needles," Sorkin said of Hoffman's heroin addiction, and "he told me to stay squeamish.

"And he said this: 'If one of us dies of an overdose, probably 10 people who were about to won't.' He meant that our deaths would make news and maybe scare someone clean."

Sorkin adds that Hoffman, a 'kind, decent, magnificent, thunderous actor," did not die from an "overdose of heroin ... he died from heroin." In general.

"We should stop implying that if he'd just taken the proper amount then everything would have been fine," he urges, making a strong and overlooked point.

"He didn't die because he was partying too hard or because he was depressed ... he died because he was an addict on a day of the week with a y in it."

"Let's add to that 10 people who were about to die who won't now."

Think he's right? Demi Lovato agrees that addiction is a disease, while others have been less sympathetic in the wake of the film great's passing.

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Anyone who believes that addiction is not a disease is either ignorant or heartless. As a recovering addict, I know first-hand the devastation this illness has on the life of the user and their loved ones. So why did I become an addict? Well, let's just say it's as much a mystery to me that at the age of 16, when I first started drinking, I immediately drank to the point of "blackouts." I also quickly got hooked on pot, coke and later in my 40's, painkillers. I never wanted drugs and alcohol to run my life. Getting high was supposed to be fun, not something that would take over my existence. All I can say is from the very first moment I sought a chemical escape, it was like a light turned on in my brain. And no matter how many times I tried to put a dimmer on that light, I was never able to control it. Fortunately, I realized the only way to save myself was to turn that light off for good! No one, whether he or she is a world- renowned celebrity or a street junkie, wants to die from an overdose, but once you get on that roller-coaster ride you always run the risk of destroying yourself. It's not about being a "bad" person or being weak-willed. It's about being sick and not getting the help you need in order to survive. Some of us live to tell the tale, and some of us don't. RIP PSH!


Amy Winehouse DID NOT die of drugs overdose. She died of an alcohol poisoning. Please check your information and correct it.

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