Date: 22nd April 2002
Reformed alcoholic Samuel L Jackson faced his biggest challenge as an actor when he had to turn away from a shot of bourbon in his latest film.
The Pulp Fiction (1994) star plays a recovering alcoholic in Changing Lanes (2002) and enjoyed putting a part of his own past into his troubled character - until he was served a shot of bourbon in a pivotal scene.
He explains, "We were in a real bar on 7th and when I sat down and I was hovering over the drink I could smell bourbon. The guy playing the barman had poured me a real drink. I don't know if he knew, but it was there and I hadn't really smelled a drink in a long time so it was kind of like flashback time. I used to love Jack Daniels."
Jackson managed to turn away from the shot, but claims his character's Alcoholics Anonymous sessions sent shudders down his spine. He adds, "I reached a point where I hated going to AA meetings because the people that go there are very depressed - because they can't drink. When I got out of rehab it was summer and people were sitting on sidewalk tables in New York, and they had their beer out there and you go home and you watch TV and it's like, `Have a Bud. ' Alcoholics are really angry about things like that. One guy said AA is like going to the best restaurant in the world and having the cottage cheese plate. "