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Wes Bentley showed up at the premiere of his new movie 'Jonah Hex' looking handsome and healthy Thursday night. It's his first major movie since 1999's 'American Beauty,' after which he spiraled into years of drug and alcohol addiction.
Bentley was profiled in the New York Times in February and he revealed that he spent much of the last decade in drug dens and doing cocaine in clubs, taking on only an occasional film to buy more drugs. The pressure to increase his star after 'American Beauty' was just too much to handle:
"I wanted fame, but I thought it would be incremental, and I became afraid of the overnight-sensation thing," Mr. Bentley said, speaking to a reporter about his life since "American Beauty," after a decade of keeping his own secrets. "I started walking into rooms, and everyone would look at me, and I would freeze up. People kept saying, 'You have to find your next movie,' and that didn't make life any better."
He married Jennifer Quanz, an aspiring actress, in 2001 and hid his addiction from her. He moved out in 2006 and they are divorcing. In 2008 Bentley was arrested for heroin possession and ordered into a 12-step program. He kept using heroin "until he was broke" and hit rock bottom last summer:
"I had come back to L.A. for something, and I drank a whole bottle of Scotch, and I thought to myself, 'I'm going to die in this hotel room with this bottle of Scotch,' " he said. "It was after that I told a friend for the first time: 'I'm a drug addict, and an alcoholic, and I need help. I need help or I'm going to die.' "
Now Bentley has been sober for nearly a year. He started rebuilding his career with the Off-Broadway play 'Venus in Fur,' which opened in January to favorable reviews, and can be seen back on the big screen this weekend. If only Jeremy London would have such a comeback story.
With costars Julia Jones, Josh Brolin and Megan Fox:
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