Russell Brand’s powerful and personal movies on addiction are now on Netflix and they are definitely worth a watch.
There are many celebrities in recovery, Russel Brand is one of the most vocal members. Russell Brand is amongst some of the most well know celebrities in recovery and he shares his message and story with millions of people throughout the world. He has helped bring recovery to the limelight with his two extremely popular specials on Netflix, “End the Drugs War” and “Russell Brand from Addiction to Recovery”.
Many celebrities in recovery are vocal about their struggles, but Brand has a unique approach. His brutally honest, funny and intelligent take on the disease of addiction and alcoholism is one of the reasons that he stands out amongst the large demographic of celebrities in recovery.
Addiction doesn’t discriminate.
Like many other celebrities in recovery, Russell Brand struggled with addiction issues from a young age. The brand recently told Oprah that his personal battle with drugs and alcohol all seemed to come from his childhood where he felt “unhappy, lonely and a bit sad.” He said the first problems that became noticeable were with food. He reports that he used to eat chocolate “compulsively”. Once in his teenage years his obsession turned to pornography and eventually drugs and alcohol.
Brand reported feeling very uncomfortable with who he was, he couldn’t cope and was just unhappy being him. Drugs and alcohol seemed to temporarily solve that problem for him. “I look to solve inner problems with external things,” he explained. “Anything that could temporarily relieve that, I was very grateful for. When you take drugs out of the equation, those issues remain.”
How did his downfall start?
Brand’s downfall from drugs came when he started using heroin. “I cannot accurately convey to you the efficiency of heroin in neutralizing pain. It transforms a tight, white fist into a gentle, brown wave. From my first inhalation 15 years ago, it fumigated my private hell and lay me down in its hazy pastures and a bathroom floor in Hackney embraced me like a womb.” Brand said in a recent article with Guardian Magazine.
“End the Drugs War” is a made for TV movie from 2014 that was on BBC.
“In this personal journey for BBC Three, Russell Brand sets out to find out how other countries are tackling their problems of drug abuse and to explore how the framework of criminalization implicit in the ‘war on drugs’ produces enormous harm in the treatment of addicts,” – BBC
His other movie “Russell Brand: From Addiction to Recovery” is a much more personal film. After the overdose of his friend Amy Winehouse he knew, there was something that he needed to do to hopefully help the lives of other addicts and alcoholics who were still struggling.
“What was so painful about Amy’s death is that I know that there is something I could have done. I could have passed on to her the solution that was freely given to me. Don’t pick up a drink or drug, one day at a time. It sounds so simple. It actually is simple, but it isn’t easy: it requires incredible support and fastidious structuring. Not to mention that the whole infrastructure of abstinence based recovery is shrouded in necessary secrecy. There are support fellowships that are easy to find and open to anyone who needs them but they eschew promotion of any kind in order to preserve the purity of their purpose, which is for people with alcoholism and addiction to help one another stay clean and sober.”
Russell Brand has now been sober for a little over ten years! He continues to share his message with 1000’s of people throughout the world.
There are a lot of celebrities in recovery.
Recently many celebrities in recovery have been coming forward and sharing their experience, strength and hope with others who are struggling. Other well-known celebrities in recovery include Eminem (sober 9 years), Robert Downey Jr. (sober almost 10 years) and Danny Trejo (aka: Machete) who has been sober 46 years! As long as addiction and alcoholism are a disease there will be celebrities in recovery. If they continue to share their stories like Russell Brand has done, the stigma of addiction can be broken and thousands of lives can be saved.
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