Anthony Hopkins is hugely popular with generations of moviegoers, most recently for playing Odin in the MCU. But this week, he’s given a touching performance in an Instagram video (see below) marking 45 years of sobriety.
In his reassuring native South Wales accent, the Oscar-winning actor explains that he recognizes that 2020 has been a tough year, but says:
“45 years ago today I had a wakeup call. I was heading toward disaster, drinking myself to death. I’m not preaching but I got a message. A little thought that said, ‘Do you want to live or die?’ I said, ‘I want to live.’ And suddenly, the relief came, and my life has been amazing.”
At 82 years old, Hopkins has lived a life anyone would be proud to call their own. Many of his characters are bona fide cinematic legends, with Hannibal Lecter the obvious highlight. Even in his later years, he’s still knocking it out of the park with roles in Westworld and The Two Popes, which both garnered Hopkins multiple major award nominations. I’ve always respected the way he treats acting as a profession rather than as some kind of higher calling as well.
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Beyond his screen work, Hopkins has engaged in philanthropic efforts based around helping people beat alcohol addiction. He’s long been a patron of the Rehabilitation for Addicted Prisoners Trust and has helped open alcohol abuse treatment units at various British prisons. He’s done similar work in California, too, appearing at events run by Women in Recovery, who help women cope with substance abuse issues.
It’s also just nice to see an unambiguously positive message right now. 2020 will undoubtedly go down as the most miserable year in many decades, but Hopkins has genuine hope that things will improve in 2021, saying:
“I have my off days and sometimes little bits of doubt and all that, but all in all, I say hang in there. Today is the tomorrow you were so worried about yesterday. You young people, don’t give up. Just keep in there, just keep fighting. Be bold and mighty forces will come to your aid. That sustained me through my life. That’s all I’ve got to say. Happy New Year, this is going to be the best year.”
I don’t know about 2021 being “the best year,” but it’s got to be better than the hell we’ve all just crawled our way through. Anthony Hopkins shows no sign of slowing down or retiring from acting, either, so here’s to the future bringing many more magnetic performances from him.