These celebrities’ love for the “CoCo” was to blame for their erratic behavior and may have even ruined their careers, not to mention their bank accounts.
For several seasons, Columbus Short played a Gladiator on “Scandal” but his run came to an end when his personal life began to make headlines. Short’s character was killed off last season and the recently unemployed actor sat down with “Access Hollywood” and confessed that his cocaine addiction was the root of the problems. “I’ll be candid: I was struggling with drugs,” Short admitted. “I had a lot on my plate, and you know, I was using unhealthy ways to kind of self-medicate and deal with a lot of heavy duty stuff in my life… I was doing cocaine and drinking a lot, and trying to balance a 16-hour work schedule a day, and a family, and I just lost myself back then.”
No one had a voice quite like Whitney Houston. She emerged on the scene in her late teens and became one of the biggest mainstream artists of her generation. A lot of people griped when she married R&B bad boy Bobby Brown and many felt he introduced her to drugs. After dominating the charts for more than 20 years, Houston’s career took a nosedive and it never recovered. The “I Will Always Love You” singer was staging a comeback with a role in the “Sparkle” remake and was headed back into the studio when she accidentally drowned in hotel room bathtub in 2012. The official cause of death was the drowning and effects of atherosclerotic heart disease and cocaine use.
By the time Lindsay Lohan landed the lead role playing twins in “The Parent Trap,” she was considered a veteran by Hollywood standards. The talented young redhead had a very promising career in Hollywood but as she got older and was left to her own devices, the rising star soon became a fixture in the nightlife. A series of arrests and rehab stints derailed La Lohan’s career. Following a court-ordered 90-day stay in a facility last summer, the troubled starlet filmed a reality show for the OWN network. During an interview with Oprah Winfrey, Lohan confessed that she wasn’t addicted to alcohol but cocaine was what she had a problem with.
Few people partied harder in Hollywood than Charlie Sheen, who was known for going on cocaine benders for days. But his hard-partying ways eventually affected his work life. Sheen’s epic departure from the massively successful sitcom “Two and a Half Men” included a public spat with show creator Chuck Lorre and a cocaine fueled party at his Manhattan hotel room that ended when his frightened hooker called the police. However, Sheen claimed he quit cold turkey and landed a new show on FX. Winning!
Charlie Sheen’s cocaine habit is well known but so is his third ex-wife’s. Brooke Mueller’s acting career never got off of the ground and her frequent rehab stays haven’t helped. The couple tied the knot in 2008 and their marriage was filled with domestic violence and visits from the police. They divorced a couple years later and Sheen’s second wife was awarded custody of their twin boys while Mueller continued to battle her cocaine addiction. She has been in rehab over 20 times and her last stint was at the Betty Ford clinic in 2013.
Dustin Johnson has one of the longest drivers on the PGA tour and he used to be ranked inside the top five golfers of the world. But his recent drug issues have gotten in the way of his career. Over the summer Johnson announced that he was taking the rest of the season off to seek professional help for a personal challenge. This came on the heels of “Golf Magazine’s” report that Johnson had tested positive for cocaine, making it his third positive drug test.
Robert Downey, Jr.
Robert Downey, Jr. claimed he first tried marijuana at the tender age of six years old and he has been struggling with drugs ever since. Downey won critical acclaim and an Oscar nod for his turn in the Charlie Chaplin biopic but his drug addiction soon took hold of him. The “Iron Man” star was in and out of jail after a series of arrests for marijuana and cocaine possession. He was also in and out of rehab but he finally kicked the habit and staged one of the best comebacks in Hollywood history.
After starring in “Grease” on Broadway, he transitioned into a successful television and film actor. His drug problem caused a health scare in the 80’s and he was forced to come face to face with his addiction. Conaway kicked the habit and continued to pad his resume with tons of roles but after relapsing, his drug problem came back with a vengeance. On VH1’s “Celebrity Rehab with Dr. Drew,” he confessed to being addicted to cocaine, alcohol and painkillers. Three years later, Conaway was found unconscious and although it was originally thought that he suffered from a drug overdose, the “Taxi” star had pneumonia. Doctors reasoned that his drug use dampened his ability to see how sick he was. His drug addiction was listed as a contributing factor in his cause of death.
Former Mayor Marion Barry was one of the most beloved politicians in the DC area. He was serving in his third term as mayor when he was busted in a sting operation. Video was released of Mayor Barry smoking freebase cocaine out of a glass pipe. He was sentenced to six months in federal prison shortly before losing the November election. After his release, Barry staged a comeback and served as city council in Ward 8 before running and winning a fourth term as mayor. He did not seek a fifth term. The once disgraced politician died from cardiac arrest last month.
We knew Rick James partied hard in the 70’s but it wasn’t until Dave Chappelle re-enacted stories told by Charlie Murphy did we see just how crazy the musician was. The “Give It To Me Baby” singer even appeared in the 2004 “True Hollywood Stories” sketch and summed up his behavior with one line, “Cocaine is a helluva drug.” James died later that year of cardiac failure. Among some of the drugs found in his system was cocaine.
They say some of the best comedians are telling jokes that come from a dark and deep place from inside of them and Richard Pryor was one of the best to ever do it. The wildly popular comedian was enjoying a successful run on the silver screen but in1980 while filming “Bustin Loose,” Pryor set himself on fire while freebasing cocaine and drinking 151-proof rum. He was hospitalized for six weeks and when he made his return to the stage in “Richard Pryor: Live on the Sunset,” he joked about the incident saying he dunked a cookie into a glass of low-fat milk and it caused an explosion.
Rapper DMX managed to do what few artists have been able to pull off: he released two number one albums in the same year. But his rap and budding acting career had to go on pause every time he got arrested or was sent to rehab. His most infamous arrest was probably back in 2004 when he was handcuffed after impersonating a federal agent while trying to carjack a vehicle at JFK airport. DMX was also charged with gun and cocaine possession. Since his latest release from rehab last year, Dark Man X was reportedly working on a new album.