The confessions of George Clooney… I'm lonely, I can't sleep and I used cocaine (but I hated it)
He is the last Hollywood playboy, a debonair movie star with a cast of famous friends and a succession of beautiful women on his arm.
With two Oscar nominations this year alone, George Clooney seems like he has it all.
But the 50-year-old actor reveals in a new interview that he suffers from bouts of loneliness, lives with chronic pain and has trouble sleeping.
Opening up: George Clooney with girlfriend Stacy Keibler at the Golden Globes in Hollywood last month
‘Gorgeous’ George even confesses to being cheated on – and dumped.
The private agony of Tinseltown’s most eligible bachelor is revealed in a lengthy, soul-searching interview with The Hollywood Reporter, the ‘bible’ of the film industry in the US.
Far from his image as a jet-setting superstar, Clooney says he’s in bed most nights by 10pm.
But he relies on the flickering of the TV to doze off and wakes up often throughout the night.
‘Turning off the television causes me to think, and once I start that vision roaring, I have a very tough time getting to sleep,’ he admits. ‘I’m able to numb out.’
Hollywood circuit: Clooney, seen here with pal Brad Pitt, says he can feel the most lonely at a big public event
But he adds: ‘Without question, I wake every night five times.’
Although he is seen as the leader of a modern-day ‘Brat Pack’ with friends like Brad Pitt and Angelina Jolie and Matt Damon, Clooney said he also suffers from loneliness.
‘Anyone would be lying if they said they didn’t get lonely at times,’ he says.
‘The loneliest you will get is in the
most public of arenas: You will go to a place and end up in the smallest
compartment possible, because it’s a distraction to everybody, and you
end up not getting to enjoy it like everyone else.’
adds: ‘I have been infinitely more alone in a bad relationship; there’s
nothing more isolating. I have been in places in my life where that has
Eternal bachelor: Seen here last year with former flame Elisabetta Canalis
He is famously averse to marriage and every break-up comes with accusations that he’s afraid of commitment, but Clooney insists he hasn’t ruled out marriage.
‘A couple of years ago, [Brad Pitt] really nailed me. He did one of those shows and they asked him when he was going to marry Angie [Angelina Jolie], and he said, ‘I’ll marry when George can legally marry [a man].’ He adds: ‘He really got me badly, something I have had to deal with the past few years. But I could give a s***.’
He’s friends with Pitt, calling him ‘one of the great guys,’ but he adds: ‘It’s different from what people think, meaning we don’t spend a lot of time together. He has been to my home in Como; we motorcycle together. But until recently, I hadn’t seen Brad in a year.’
Clooney refuses to discuss his current relationship with statuesque former wrestler Stacy Keibler.
Most surprising to his many female fans may be that Cooney has been the victim of infidelity.
He said he’d been ditched ‘and left for someone; all those things. And it was sometimes a surprise, and sometimes you saw it coming. The most painful was when I kept trying to get (one woman) back. But we all make dumb mistakes.’
The normally taboo subjects of drink and drugs even came up in the interview, appearing in the Reporter’s latest issue.
He says he hasn’t had a drink since New Year’s Eve.
‘I drink at times too much,’ he acknowledges. ‘I do enjoy drinking, and there have been times in my life when it’s crossed the line from being fun to having to drink late at night for absolutely no reason. So what I do is, I stop.’
He admits he’s sampled cocaine. ‘I didn’t have an issue with it. I’m not a big druggie, not at all. Blow is absolutely a nonstarter,’ he adds.
The actor has spoken before about the pain he suffered from a leak in his spinal cord that was so intense he contemplated suicide. ‘I thought I was going to die,’ he says of the consequences of a fall when he was filming ‘Syriana’ in 2005.
'I thought I’d had a stroke. It was like a train horn going off in your head and you can’t see and you can’t stand,’ he says.
After a nine-hour surgery, he said he was put on a regimen of prescription drugs.
Oscar nominee: Clooney in his hotly-tipped Academy Award film The Descendants
‘Then you start on a series of painkillers,’ he says. ‘They’ll hand you a giant tub of Vicodin, which is not a good drug for me; I had a lot of stomach pain and I really didn’t like the high it gave me.
‘Then there were a lot of other drugs. I was on morphine for a while, which created this horrible anxiety where I really thought I was in trouble.’
He said he still suffers daily pain today. ‘As the day goes on, it gets worse. My ears will literally pop and my head goes ape-shit. But I’m scrappy,’ he says.
Clooney, who is nominated for Academy Awards this year for lead actor in ‘The Descendants’ and for co-writing ‘The Ides of March,’ is also known for his humanitarian work bringing the world’s attention to the suffering in Darfur and Sudan.
The actor, who has three Golden Globes and an Oscar, reveals in the interview how he was held up at gunpoint while travelling with his father in Sudan.
It was ‘in the middle of nowhere and we were pulled over by a bunch of 13-year-old kids with Kalashnikovs, and that’s where it’s dangerous because it’ s random violence.’
Luckily, a colleague came to his aid and calmly pushed the gun away. “’I couldn’ t believe it was that simple because I was embarrassed at how scared I was,’ admits Clooney.