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Brett Butler starred in a successful ABC sitcom for five years, so many people might be surprised to learn that the Grace Under Fire actress is now homeless.
The actress, a two-time Golden Globe nominee her role in the 1993-98 comedy series, struggled with substance abuse while starring on the show, which was in the top 10 for two seasons. The Chuck Lorre-created show was canceled in 1998 after she was asked to leave the set because of her drug use.
“I almost died like Michael Jackson. … I was dying of addiction,” she said in an interview with Entertainment Tonight’s Nancy O’Dell.
“I did everything but crack and needles pretty much,” she added. “I had a variety of things given to me by doctor, and other things. I’m not doing it to be coy, but I’m not going to go through what I did. I did it ’til the wheels came off.”
She went in and out of rehab, and after the show was canceled, she moved out of her L.A. mansion to a farm in Georgia, where she lived with 15 pets, but she soon ran out of money and found herself in a homeless shelter.
She said she regrets the way she acted while at the height of her career and hopes that people will forgive her for “making someone’s day miserable over the choice of a word in a 22-minute show. A lot of times, I’d be an ass and didn’t even think I was. Like, I’d call my managers and go, ‘There’s a while limo out here for an awards show,’ and he’d say, ‘Don’t get in it,'” she said. “And he should have said, ‘You ungrateful cracker, go get in the car. Go to the show, and they’ll drop you out back.'”
She’s now making an attempt at a comeback, developing a reality TV show about her self-professed psychic abilities and performing this weekend at the Downtown Comedy Club in Los Angeles.
“I really feel like an old dog, though,” she said. “It’s almost lke I was a horse that ran in the derby once. The kids are coming up and going, ‘Are you still doing this?’ I think it’s something to do with me living through it.”
Still, she’s trying to remain optimistic.
“I don’t think about what I survived,” she said. “I hope I forgive, I hope I’m forgiven, and I’m just really glad that I think things are funny and there’s no end to that.”
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