Hayden Panettiere has opened up about being given “happiness pills” before red carpet interviews when she was 15.
The now 32-year-old actor became a child star at age 11, with roles in soap operas and the 2000 sports film Think of the titans.
In a new interview with persons About her history of addiction to opioids and alcohol, she said she was 15 when she was first offered drugs by someone on her team.
“They were supposed to perk me up for interviews,” Panettiere said.
“I had no idea this was not appropriate or what door would open for me when it came to my addiction.”
Soon after, at the age of 16, she landed the role of Claire Bennet on the science fiction series heroes.
“My salvation is that I wasn’t allowed to be messy on set and at work,” she admitted.
Meanwhile, her alcohol use and occasional opioid use increased.
“But things kept getting out of control [off set]. And as I got older, drugs and alcohol became something I almost couldn’t live without.”
In 2014, Panettiere gave birth to her child Kaya, whom she shares with her ex, Ukrainian former professional boxer Wladimir Klitschko.
While she didn’t drink during her pregnancy, she says it started up again after giving birth and she snuck away to drink.
“He didn’t want to be near me,” she said of Klitschko at the time.
“I didn’t want to be around me. But with the opiates and the alcohol, I did whatever it took to feel happy for a moment. Then I would feel worse than before. I was in a cycle of self-destruction.”
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She adds that her alcohol consumption worsened and she was hospitalized for jaundice.
“The doctors told me my liver was failing,” she said. “I was no longer a 20-year-old who could just get back on my feet.”
Eventually, she said she was able to “get over the hump” of her addiction after going into rehab for eight months.
“It’s an everyday decision and I check with myself all the time,” Panettiere added.
“But I’m just so grateful to be a part of this world again and I’ll never take it for granted again.”
Panettiere returns Scream franchise in the upcoming sixth film.
If you or someone you know is addicted to drugs you can get confidential 24/7 help and support from Frank by calling 0300 123 6600, texting 82111, send an email or visit their website here.
In the US, the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration can be reached at 1-800-662-HELP.
https://www.independent.co.uk/arts-entertainment/films/news/hayden-panettiere-drugs-heroes-b2117198.html Heroes star Hayden Panettiere says she was drugged before red carpet appearances at the age of 15