Sorkin says he and Hoffman talked about drug addiction

Feb. 6, 2014 at 3:36 PM
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NEW YORK, Feb. 6 (UPI) -- Hollywood screenwriter and producer Aaron Sorkin says he and the late Philip Seymour Hoffman bonded over their shared battle with drug addiction.

Hoffman died Sunday of a suspected heroin overdose. He was 46.

Sorkin talked in a Time magazine essay Wednesday about his relationship with the Oscar-winning actor, which began when the pair collaborated on the 2007 film "Charlie Wilson's War."

"It's not unusual to have these mini-AA meetings -- people like us are the only ones to whom tales of insanity don't sound insane," Sorkin wrote. "I told him I felt lucky because I'm squeamish and can't handle needles. He told me to stay squeamish."

Sorkin went on to say he remembered an instance in which Hoffman speculated about the impact his or Sorkin's death from a drug overdose might have on other addicts.

"He said this: 'If one of us dies of an overdose, probably 10 people who were about to won't.' He meant that our deaths would make news and maybe scare someone clean," Sorkin said in the essay, adding he doesn't think "overdose" is the proper word to use regarding the circumstances of Hoffman's death.

"Phil Hoffman, this kind, decent, magnificent, thunderous actor, who was never outwardly 'right' for any role but who completely dominated the real estate upon which every one of his characters walked, did not die from an overdose of heroin -- he died from heroin," Sorkin wrote.

"We should stop implying that if he'd just taken the proper amount then everything would have been fine. He didn't die because he was partying too hard or because he was depressed -- he died because he was an addict on a day of the week with a 'Y' in it," he said. "He'll have his well-earned legacy his Willy Loman that belongs on the same shelf with Lee J. Cobb's and Dustin Hoffman's, his Jamie Tyrone, his Truman Capote and his Academy Award. Let's add to that 10 people who were about to die who won't now."

Sorkin, 52, has spoken candidly about his own dependence on cocaine, but he maintains he has been clean and sober since a brief relapse in 2001, said.

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