Samuel L. Jackson wasn't always one of the baddest motherf—king actors on the planet, and he gives credit to his wife and children for helping him kick his drug habit to become one of the highest-grossing actors in Hollywood.
In a recent interview with The Guardian, Jackson, who's been sober since 1991, spoke candidly about his bout with drugs early in his career.
“I was a f—king drug addict and I was out of my mind a lot of the time, but I had a good reputation,” Jackson said.
“I was doing Pulitzer Prize-winning plays. I was working with people who made me better, who challenged me. So I was doing things the right way. It was just that one thing that was in the way: my addiction,” Jackson continued.
By all accounts, Jackson was a functioning addict back then, but there was a time when his addiction to crack led to Jackson being found on a kitchen floor by his then-8-year-old daughter and his wife, LaTanya Richardson.
“I’ve always had my wife, LaTanya, who’s my harshest critic. She’d say: ‘You’re so intelligent that the first time you read something, you think you understand it intellectually and emotionally, then you find the vocal inflections and the facial expressions—and you can get there with that. But there’s no blood in it.’ And I’m like: ‘It’s all f—kin’ make-believe, what in the hell you talking about?’ And it wasn’t until I got sober that I knew fully what she meant. Before, I used to do stuff onstage and kinda look for the reaction from the audience—‘Aha! I got ’em good that time!’ And once I was able to ignore that and focus on the relationships with the people I was onstage with, I was finally able to blossom into whatever I might think I am now," Jackson stated.