Bradley Cooper may have become known for his partying antics in The Hangover, but at one point, life was imitating art.
The 37-year-old actor who stars opposite his ex-girlfriend Zoë Saldaña in The Words, has done a complete turn around of his life since he stopped using drugs and alcohol.
“I was at a party, and deliberately bashed my head on the concrete floor,” Cooper speaks of an incident to The Hollywood Reporter in their Sept. 14 cover story. “Like, ‘Hey, look how tough I am!’”
The actor, who was under the influence at the time, had blood dripping down – and was left wanting more.
“And then I did it again,” he explains. “I spent the night at St. Vincent's Hospital with a sock of ice, waiting for them to stitch me up."
This occurrence was one of many Cooper experienced, which essentially led him to tackle his addictions and get cleaned up.
"I don't drink or do drugs at all anymore," he says, stating he hasn’t used them since being 29. "Being sober helps a great deal."
Friends also pleaded Cooper to get his act together, but he refused to listen.
"Part of me believed it, and part of me didn't,” he explains. “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?’”
Before the heartthrob launched to fame as an actor – and even becoming People’s 2011 Sexiest Man Alive – Cooper wasn’t always so comfortable with himself.
"I was so concerned what you thought of me, how I was coming across, how I would survive the day,” he says. “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.' "
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