Will Arnett Credits Community With Keeping Him Sober

By Kelly Burch 09/26/19

“Sobriety to me is a gift. It’s something that I was fortunate enough to be able to receive and I’m very, very grateful on a daily basis.”

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Will Arnett
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Will Arnett, who is most recognized for playing George Oscar Bluth II (G.O.B.) on Arrested Development, credited his sober community with helping him overcome alcoholism when he received the Spirit of Sobriety Award at the Brent Shapiro Foundation Summer Spectacular last Saturday night (Sept. 21).

“Sobriety to me is a gift,” Arnett said, according to Variety. “It’s something that I was fortunate enough to be able to receive and I’m very, very grateful on a daily basis.”

He said that his decision to get sober has had a ripple effect on the people around him.

“Sobriety has touched so many people, not just me but so many people in my life, my kids, my family,” he said.  

He Relapsed In 2018 

Arnett got sober more than 18 years ago after he noticed he was drinking too much. He briefly relapsed in 2016 while working on Flaked, his Netflix comedy series about a man in recovery. When that happened, he was able to reconnect with his recovery community, which has helped him stay sober.

“I have been on the receiving end of a lot of kindness in my life and that kindness is what has allowed me to be here tonight passing the message on to others who need help,” Arnett said at the gala. “Community is the opposite of addiction. The more conversations we can have, the more people we can help.” 

Celebrating Sobriety For A Good Cause

The Brent Shapiro Foundation was started by Robert and Linell Shapiro, who lost their son Brent to a drug overdose in 2005. The foundation regularly brings together Hollywood stars to share their sobriety stories and raise money for addiction treatment and awareness. 

“I think early education is a big key,” Linell Shapiro said at the event. “Being with your kids, being open about it, talking about drugs and their influences. I think if you start young enough, people lots of times don’t want to do that but if you start young enough and put it in the right way, it will really stay with a child.”

Actress Eva Longoria hosted the event, and said that she has been touched by the work that the Shapiros have done in honor of their son. 

“I do want to say as a new mother, this foundation and what they are doing is extremely important and it’s why we are here tonight,” she said. “The work that Bob and Linell have done over the last 14 years is remarkable and I couldn’t be more proud of them.”

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Kelly Burch writes about addiction and mental health issues, particularly as they affect families. Follow her on TwitterFacebook, and LinkedIn.