Despite starring in what would go on to be some of the most well-known movies in history like North by Northwest, His Girl Friday, and The Bishop's Wife, actor Cary Grant wasn't without his own personal issues.
In an all-new documentary, Becoming Cary Grant, the actor revealed the identity crisis he suffered when he was 53, explaining, "For many years, I have cautiously peered from behind the face of a man known as Cary Grant. The protection of that facade was both an advantage and a disadvantage. If I couldn't see out, how could anyone see in?"
Despite his legacy as a leading man, Grant struggled to connect with women, having two failed marriages and living on and off with film star Randolph Scott for 12 years.
Filmmaker Mark Kidel described what he knew of Grant, saying, "He was unable to have a relationship. They were all falling apart."
Grant's third wife, Betsy Drake, however, thought she could lend a hand in Grant getting over some of his issues, introducing him to physician Mortimer Hartman. Drake had received "assistance" from Hartman, who administered LSD to cure her alcoholism, which Grant hoped would also work for him.
Through working with Hartman, Grant is estimated to have taken over 100 doses of LSD over the course of three years.
Introduction to LSD
"The fact that the sessions lasted five to six hours suggests that the doses were not very strong," Kidel confessed. "Trips normally last 12 hours or so...what is remarkable is that he persevered over three years. LSD takes you to the basement of your psyche."
Grant's pursuit of wellness wasn't something he kept a secret, even telling Good Housekeeping all about LSD's beneficial properties. At the time, however, the drug was legal, so it wasn't a controversial confession.
He also explained to Look magazine, "I learned to accept the responsibility for my own actions and to blame myself and no one else for circumstances of my own creating. At last I am close to happiness."
During the documentary, Grant explains, "LSD made me realize I was killing my mother through...relationships with women. I was punishing them for what she had done to me."prevnext
To say that Grant's relationship with his mother was "complicated" would be an understatement.
Cary's older brother, John, died of tuberculous meningitis when he was only one-year-old. Cary served as a surrogate for John, with his mother Elsie never totally embracing him as her son.
Clearly still coping with the loss of John, Elsie curled Cary's hair and dressed him in baby clothes well outside of infancy, seemingly hoping to keep the feeling that baby John was still around.
The experience had a profound impact on the actor, with Grant revealing, "For a while I wasn't sure if I was a boy or a girl."prevnext
Relief from the complicated maternal relationship came when Cary was 9 years old, returning home from school to discover his mom had gone to a "resort," according to his father. "[Grant] thought she died," explained Kidel. "She was never spoken of again."
It wasn't until Grant was 30 that he uncovered the truth about his mother, with an admissions book for Bristol Lunatic Asylum detailing that she had been committed in 1915.
Elsie's reason for the committal was listed as "mania," with her husband's testimony serving as the only evidence of her illness, with no official prognosis from a doctor or mental health professional.
Twenty years after her committal, Cary freed her, the same year that his father passed away. Her institutionalization had such an impact on Elsie that her son had to convince her who he was.
Although Grant continued to have problems with romantic relationships, ultimately scoring five different marriages, it's possible the LSD sessions helped him to some degree, showing his appreciation to Hartman by leaving him $10,000 when he passed away.
Becoming Cary Grant airs Friday on Showtime.0comments
- Tiger Woods DUI Arrest Video Revealed
- The Celebrity Mug Shots We Will Never Forget
- People Are Pissed About Dani Mathers' Lax Sentence for Body Shaming Another Woman
[H/T New York Post]prev