Jason Flemyng is one of Britain’s most recognisable actors and he’s keen to use his fame to help tackle a problem close to his heart.
The star of Lock, Stock And Two Smoking Barrels, also famous for roles in The Curious Case Of Benjamin Button, and The League Of Extraordinary Gentlemen, has joined up with the Rehabilitation for Addicted Prisoners Trust (RAPT) to raise awareness of alcoholism and encourage people to get help.
Before addressing an event at St Leonard’s Church, Shoreditch , on Friday, November 20, the 49-year-old spoke to The Wharf about drink and drug addictions.
“Alcoholism has always been a problem,” he said. “But it used to be swept under the carpet and it’s not any more.
“My father was the film director, Gordon Flemyng and he would have been even more successful had he not battled with drink for much of his life.
“I think the first step for addicts is admitting there is a problem because it’s only then that you can start dealing with it.”
Jason believes the changing nature of addiction makes it difficult for charities like RAPT to keep up.
“Coke is everywhere these days,” he said. “When I was young, you couldn’t get it because it was £90 a gram and unaffordable but now it’s so cheap and so many people use it.
“If stuff is available, people will experiment with it and if you don’t have to battle an addiction at some point in your life, you will have been lucky.”
On a personal level, Jason believes the experiences of his family members have helped him gain perspective on his own life.
“I do still drink,” he said. “But I have a devil on my shoulder telling me what to do.
“Every time I have too much or overindulge, I hear my dad’s voice saying: ‘Son, don’t turn out like me’.”
Flemyng’s television directorial debut, SS-GB, a 1940s detective series set in a fictional Nazi-occupied London will be broadcast early in 2016, featuring Control star Sam Riley.