As one of the biggest stars in the world, Anthony Hopkins has had encounters with people from all walks of life.
While many of them have affected him in one way or another, there was one person who had the biggest impact on his life.
Back in 1973, the Oscar-winning actor was starring in the hit Broadway play Equus when people started to notice that he was suffering from an addiction to alcohol. Every night, in between acts, he would rush to a bar near the theater for a couple of drinks.
In a recent speech he gave during LEAP (Leadership, Excellence and Accelerating Your Potential) Week 2018, he confessed to the audience that he drank "because that's what you do in theater."
He also admitted that his alcoholism made him "very difficult to work with because he was "usually hungover, disgusted, busted, and not to be trusted."
It took two more years for the Silence of the Lambs actor to finally realize that he needed some help. In 1975, he attended his first Alcoholics Anonymous (AA) meeting and that's when he heard the seven words that changed his life forever and helped him become the iconic actor he is today.
Hopkins, who considered himself to be an atheist at the time, had a conversation with a woman who asked him, "Why don't you just trust in God?"
"And I said, well, why not? And was such a quantum leap from this to that," Hopkins told Piers Morgan in 2011. He continued, "I was hell bent on destruction. And I just asked for a little bit of help, and suddenly, pow. It was just like, bingo. It was like being possessed by a demon, an addiction, and I couldn't stop. And millions of people around like that. I could not stop."
To some, these words may not mean much, but for Hopkins, they were what he needed to hear at his lowest point. From then on, he took a leap of faith and let God help him overcome his shortcomings and turn them into strength.
While the actor isn't pushing his faith on others, he is using his experience as an alcoholic to help people who may be going through the same thing.
Hopkins has been sober for over 40 years, but he doesn't regret being an addict. It has helped him perfect the complex characters he plays.
"I’m very happy I’m an alcoholic—it’s a great gift because wherever I go, the abyss follows me. It’s a volcanic anger you have and it’s fuel. Rocket fuel. But of course, it can rip you to pieces and kill you," he recently told The Guardian. "Over the years, I have learned not to be a people-pleaser. I don’t have a temper anymore. I get impatient, but I try not to judge. I try to live and let live. I don’t get into arguments, I don’t offer opinions, and I think if you do that, then the anger finally begins to transform into drive."
Hopkins' powerful roles have not only earned up an Academy Award, but also three BAFTA Awards, two Emmys, and a Cecil B. De Mille Award.
The Welsh actor received one of the highest honors from Queen Elizabeth II when he was knighted in 1993.
All these achievements are a far cry from how he imagined his life would turn out had he not found God.
"I still cannot believe that my life is what it is because I should have died in Wales, drunk or something like that," he told the LEAP crowd.
Hopkins isn't the only mainstream Hollywood actor whose life has been turned around by having faith. Guardians of the Galaxy star Chris Pratt also credits God for setting him on the right path and help him take control of his life.
“I was sitting outside a grocery store—we’d convinced someone to go in and buy us beer. This is Maui. And a guy named Henry came up and recognized something in me that needed to be saved. He asked what I was doing that night, and I was honest. I said, ‘My friend’s inside buying me alcohol.’ ‘You going to go party?’ he asked. ‘Yeah.’ ‘Drink and do drugs? Meet girls, fornication?’ I was like, ‘I hope so.’" Pratt recalled.
"I was charmed by this guy, don’t know why. He was an Asian dude, maybe Hawaiian, in his 40s. It should’ve made me nervous but didn’t. I said, ‘Why are you asking?’ He said, ‘Jesus told me to talk to you . . .’ At that moment I was like, I think I have to go with this guy. He took me to church. Over the next few days I surprised my friends by declaring that I was going to change my life."
It's nice to see celebrities get honest about their beliefs and inspire so many!