Bradley Cooper Talks Addiction and 8-Year Sobriety

bradley cooper the hollywood reporter

Actor Bradley Cooper talks candidly about his journey to fame in the latest issue of The Hollywood Reporter, including his struggle with addiction.

He has enjoyed a great deal of fame over the past few years thanks to a number of box office hits, including 'The Hangover' and 'Wedding Crashers.'   The icing on the cake for the 37-year-old actor was undoubtedly being named PEOPLE's 2011 Sexiest Man Alive.

Many don't realize that the seemingly uncomplicated actor had a wild past that he is happy to have put behind him.  Cooper admits, "I don't drink or do drugs at all anymore.  Being sober helps a great deal."

He shared an example from his past, "I was at a party and deliberately bashed my head on the concrete floor -- like, 'Hey, look how tough I am!' And I came up, and blood dripped down. And then I did it again. I spent the night at St. Vincent's Hospital with a sock of ice, waiting for them to stitch me up."

The actor revealed, "I was so concerned what you thought of me, how I was coming across, how I would survive the day. I always felt like an outsider. I just lived in my head. I realized I wasn't going to live up to my potential, and that scared the hell out of me. I thought, 'Wow, I'm actually gonna ruin my life; I'm really gonna ruin it.' "

Although his friends urged him to take a close look at his life, he didn't listen, "Part of me believed it, and part of me didn't. But the proof was in the pudding: I'd always gotten up at the crack of dawn, and that was out the window. I remember looking at my life, my apartment, my dogs, and I thought, 'What's happening?' "

He took control of his demons when he hit age 29 and he has been living a life of sobriety for the past eight years.  Read the rest of Cooper's story here.

Cooper's latest film 'Words' hits theaters this weekend, Sept. 7.

Photo Credit: The Hollywood Reporter