In a recent interview with The Hollywood Reporter, "Hunger Games" star Wes Bentley opened up about his past battle with heroin addiction.
"I put up such a wall that I didn't even go and meet with these great directors whom I respected and admired so much," he told THR. Bentley would take long breaks in between films and didn't shoot anything between 2000 and 2003. "I wasn't bringing my A game to any of them," he said. "I don't know if I was bringing my B game. I just kind of didn't care and [was] coasting."
The 34-year-old star gained fame when he appeared in "American Beauty" in 1999, and according to THR he began using drugs to "escape expectations." During that time, he reportedly turned down opportunities to work with Christopher Nolan, Tim Burton and Ang Lee.
Bentley and Heath Ledger became close friends after they met while filming "The Four Feathers" in 2002. Ledger died of an accidental prescription pill overdose. Bentley recalls, "At one point we were as close as two people could get without being blood." Bentley is now four years sober and has a 2-year-old son with wife Jacqui Swedberg.
His most recent work has been as Seneca Crane in the "Hunger Games" series and he recently landed the lead role on Ryan Murphy's new HBO pilot, "Open," and a supporting role in Christopher Nolan's new film, "Interstellar."
"I've been given this second chance, and I'm going to do everything I can with it," he said.
CORRECTION: A previous version of this article stated incorrectly that "American Beauty" was released in 1998. The movie was released in 1999.