Shia LaBeouf Reveals He Was Diagnosed With PTSD Due to Disney Stardom: ‘I Just Thought I Was an Alcoholic’

Shia LaBeouf Reveals He Was Diagnosed With PTSD Due to Disney Stardom
Shia LaBeouf attends 'The Peanut Butter Falcon' Film Screening, at ArcLight Cinemas, in Los Angeles, CA on August 1, 2019.  Todd Williamson/JanuaryImages/Shutterstock

Coming to terms. Shia LaBeouf is opening up about how being a Disney star impacted his overall well-being.

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In an interview with The Hollywood Reporter’s “Awards Chatter” podcast, he spoke about his upbringing and troubled past. From a young age, he was pressured to ensure his family was financially afloat. This all began with his days on Even Stevens, the Disney Channel series he led for three seasons.

“In a very simple way, to me, having money meant having a family,” LaBeouf, 33, said on Tuesday, October 29. “The more money I had, the more I could have my family around. That’s just how I equated it.”

LaBeouf regarded “capitalism” as the reason his family “didn’t work out.” He looked at his parents’ problems economically, as “all of their fighting came from money.” He believed if his family “had money, there’d be no fighting,” citing this as what ultimately inspired his “hustle.”

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After Even Stevens ended in 2003, LaBeouf transitioned to a career in film. He landed his first movie role with 2003’s Holes, followed by his first box office hit with, Disturbia, in 2007. The Daytime Emmy winner continued to appear in major motion pictures like Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull, the Transformers franchise and Eagle Eye.

He soon opted to appear in more independent films, including American Honey, Fury and Nymphomaniac. “I was trying to earn my father. I was trying to shake off Disney. I was trying to shake off blockbusters,” he said. “And I was trying to work with people who f–ked with me.”

Throughout LaBeouf’s career, he has often made headlines for his various arrests and public outbursts. He revealed on Tuesday his “bottom” occurred when he was arrested in 2017 for an altercation he had with an undercover cop while he was in Savannah, Georgia, filming The Peanut Butter Falcon. (A judge permitted the Lawless actor to finish his sentencing after he wrapped production on the indie flick.)

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He went to Connecticut to attend court-ordered rehab for an open-ended period. Through this, LaBeouf — who also struggled with alcoholism — came to terms with his underlying issue: post-traumatic stress disorder.

“It was the first time I’d been told I had PSTD,” LaBeouf, 33, said on the podcast. “I just thought I was an alcoholic, like, a true-blue drunk and I needed to deal with that. I knew it was an issue but didn’t know there was this extra whole other thing that was hindering my ability to have any peace in my life and my ability to deal with people.”

LaBeouf’s new film Honey Boy, which he penned and stars in, chronicles the actor’s childhood onward and how his struggles to mend his relationship with his father. On Tuesday, he said that “everything that’s in the film happened.”

Honey Boy will be released by Amazon on Friday, November 8.

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