Gerard Butler was in rehab, is now 'in good health'
Gerard Butler recently completed a rehab stint to reportedly treat a prescription drug addiction that he developed following a surfing accident.
On the afternoon of December 18, the 42-year-old Scottish "300" actor was filming the movie "Of Men and Mavericks" and was held under the waves at the real Maverick's Point, a popular break located near Half Moon Bay. He was rescued and taken to a local hospital for observation and released later in the day.
"Gerard has completed a successful course of treatment and has returned home in good health," his spokesperson told OnTheRedCarpet.com on Friday, February 24. "We will not be making any further comment at this time."
The website TMZ recently reported that Butler has struggled with pain management for years and after his accident, he "realized he was relying too much on prescription drugs and decided to head off a full-blown addiction." It said he checked into the Betty Ford Center in southern California three weeks ago.
The actor talked about the potentially fatal accident on the UK series "The Graham Norton Show" in January, saying: "It was a pretty close call. [The waves] just took me and I couldn't get up. It was pretty hairy."
Butler began his on-screen career in the late 1990s after previously working as a lawyer in his native Scotland. His breakout roles came in 2004, when he played the villain in the musical film "The Phantom of the Opera" and in 2006, when he starred in the fantasy action blockbuster "300."
"I don't quite know how I got through my last two years of law school because by then, I was already partying a lot and not really taking my responsibilities too seriously," the actor said on 'The Howard Stern Show' on Sirius XM radio in November 2011. "I took a year out. I came over to America. I was always getting in trouble. I was thrown in jail like a bunch of times."
Butler, who is often seen at nightclubs in Los Angeles, denied reports that said he was once addicted to drugs and alcohol, but told Stern: "I was definitely drinking. But I was not an alcoholic. I wouldn't say drug addict at all. Yeah, I took drugs. I don't ever really go into specifics there."
"Of Men and Mavericks" focuses on Santa Cruz surfer Jay Moriarity, portrayed by real life professional Jonny Weston. Butler plays his mentor, Rick "Frosty Hesson." The real Moriarity died at age 21 in 2001 during a diving accident in the Indian Ocean.
"Of Men and Mavericks" also stars Abigail Spencer and Elisabeth Shue and is set for release in October 2012.
This is not the first time Butler suffered an accident while filming a movie. He told OnTheRedCarpet.com that he was hit with stray bullet casings while shooting "Machine Gun Preacher," which hit theaters in September.