Zac Efron Talks Addiction With...Bear Grylls?

By Shawn Dwyer 07/30/14

The Neighbors actor spoke with the reality TV survivalist about addiction while eating worms in the Caskill mountains.

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Zac Efron, who has recently gone public with his alcohol and drug addiction battles, recently appeared on the new NBC reality series, "Running Wild With Bear Grylls," which pits celebrities against nature in a two-day survival challenge in the wild.

"It got to the point where I was caring less about the work and waiting more for the weekend where I couldn't wait to go out and let loose and have fun. But when Monday and Tuesday were difficult to get through, I thought, 'This is bad,'" Efron told Grylls.

Last year, Efron entered drug treatment twice and even received intensive outpatient care for several weeks in order to overcome his addictions to booze and drugs, particularly cocaine. The actor told Grylls how easy it was to become an addict in Hollywood.

"It was just so quick. It was shocking. The challenging part was never the work, that was never it. It was sort of the in-between work—the social aspects outside of it," Efron said. "Everywhere you go [there are people watching] and it can be confusing, and pretty soon you need a social lubricant."

Notwithstanding a recent incident with a homeless man in downtown Los Angeles, Efron has since adopted a quiet life that consists of AA meetings, seeing a therapist, and going to bed by nine, something he reiterated with Grylls.

"I just really never again want to take anything from the outside in to feel comfortable in my present skin, and that takes a lot of work," Efron said. "It's just meditation and stopping and slowing down your brain."

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Shawn Dwyer is a writer, editor and content producer living in Los Angeles. You can find him on Linkedin.