Drinking to utter oblivion: Gerard Butler`s two-decade long abstention from alcohol

It is often seen in the world of acting that alcohol serves as a constant companion. However, the star of films such as "RocknRolla" and "300", Gerard Butler, has maintained a sober life for more than twenty years. But how did he reach this decision?

Mr. Inebriate

Early on, Butler recognized his inability to strike a balance between strenuous work and systematic drinking. His dalliance with alcohol began at 16, and by 22, he had become a fully-fledged alcoholic.

Alcohol boosted his bravado, eased social interactions - Gerard was an introvert, internally processing everything, incessantly self-reflecting. However, one or two drinks were never sufficient - he consistently overindulged to the point of falling unconscious. "I drank to complete oblivion. I was utterly obsessed with it and harbored a death wish. It was sheer madness," the man recollects.
Gerard Butler
Gerard Butler
In the mornings, he was tormented by crippling hangovers, compelling him to call his boss and excuse himself from work. Gerard was a week away from becoming a lawyer (he was then interning at a law firm in Edinburgh), but... it never happened. Due to his endless absences, he was unceremoniously dismissed.
Young Gerard Butler
Young Gerard Butler
At the age of 25, Butler found himself jobless, prospectless, with impaired health and nerves frayed to the breaking point. With this medley of hardships, he began a new chapter of his life: he quit drinking, relocated to London, and found employment in a theater. His recovery was largely due to a dream that, at the time, seemed utterly unattainable - to become a renowned actor. Today, he barely remembers the taste of alcohol:
It feels as though I've never drunk in my life. Once, I couldn't imagine going somewhere and not drinking, but in time the desire and the self-doubt that primarily compel people to drink, dissipate.


Gerard identifies himself as a passionate and highly dependent individual. Having overcome the inclination to drink in his youth, he once again found himself on the precipice. Here's what happened.

In 2007, Butler sustained an injury while filming "Butterfly on a Wheel." The actor was prescribed injections, ointments, and painkillers, but complete recovery eluded him. Over the years, his back problems only exacerbated. Gerard decided to double the dosage of his medications, but quickly realized that he couldn't live without these pills.
Gerard Butler in Butterfly on a Wheel
Gerard Butler in Butterfly on a Wheel
Frightened by his burgeoning addiction, he voluntarily checked into a rehabilitation clinic. For three weeks, he was compelled to eat healthily, meditate, and learn to tell his pain to go away. The approach worked. "Perhaps a stronger person wouldn't have needed to do this. But I'm glad I took this step. In my life, I've made a plethora of erroneous decisions. However, I also know I've made a few right ones," the actor acknowledges.

For further details about the actor's career trajectory, please refer to his biography on zoomboola.com.