It's no secret that among the many, many people who deal with addiction in one form or another, are some of our favorite celebrities. We can often see their very public ups and downs as they try to gain control of substance abuse issues, but sometimes those troubles are hidden from public view for quite a while. Actor Dax Shepard has been open about his struggles with drug and alcohol abuse for several years, and he recently recalled the Late Night with Conan O'Brien appearance which saw him temporarily banned from the show.
Dax Shepard, who became known for his time on Punk'd and as a cast member on the hit NBC family drama Parenthood, recently spoke with NBA star Blake Griffin on his The Pursuit of Healthiness podcast, and revealed a big "rock bottom" moment which helped lead him to take sobriety seriously. In 2004, Shepard appeared on Late Night with Conan O'Brien to promote his film Without a Paddle, but ended up on stage inebriated. As Shepard recalled, the talk show appearance was "the only career wreckage-y thing I did," adding:
I had done the pre-interview in a blackout, and I woke up to the hotel security shaking me awake. And I had to be on Conan in literally 20 minutes from getting shook awake... I show up on the show, I don't know what he's talking about. I can tell he's cueing me up for stories I've told, but I don't know any of the stories. So, I'm just doing what I can to be funny out there and I am a mess. Now, the audience dug it. It was fine for the audience. But for [O'Brien], what a disaster. I didn't know any of the stories, I broke a coffee table. So I was banned from that show for some years, until I got sober and I got myself back on it and now I've been on it a bazillion times.
Unfortunately, Dax Shepard is not exaggerating when he says that this particular Late Night interview was "a mess." Within a few seconds of arriving on stage with what appears to be a lot of perfectly wacky energy, he tries to sit opposite O'Brien and promptly falls backward over the chair right in front of the host, which is when he likely broke that table he mentioned.
While it's not completely obvious that Shepard is inebriated, his brief time on stage is filled with random conversation detours and rambling. As he said during his podcast chat, much of what he comes up with manages to make the audience laugh, but O'Brien was tasked with doing a lot of work to keep things on track.
You can take a look a clip of Dax Shepard's Late Night interview below:
It was just last year that Dax Shepard made the difficult decision to reveal on his own podcast, Armchair Expert, that he'd relapsed after 16 years of sobriety, recording that episode while sober for just seven days. Luckily, with help from his strong support system, like wife Kristen Bell who stood by him through his struggles during quarantine, it sounds like he's been back on track for a while and is working hard to stay that way.