Jack Black Talks About His Cocaine Abuse And Playing R.L. Stine In ‘Goosebumps’

This month, Jack Black will hit the big screen in a new movie about monsters run amok, Goosebumps. Yet, the School of Rock star known for his upbeat, funny characters recently revealed some real monsters that have troubled him in the past.

In a recent Parade interview, Jack Black opened up about a gloomier time in his life.

At age 10 his parents divorced, which was the beginning of a tumultuous period in his life. By age 14, when most kids his age are thinking about starting high school and being with friends, Jack admits he struggled with problems much greater.

“I was having a lot of troubles with cocaine… I was hanging out with some pretty rough characters. I was scared to go to school [because] one of them wanted to kill me. I wanted to get out of there.”

To give Jack a new start, his parents moved him to a Los Angeles school for troubled youths named Poseidon. This is where he met a therapist and his life took a turn for the better.

Feeling guilty about stealing from his mom to feed a cocaine addiction, Black finally opened up to the therapist. It was this session that Black says put him on a new course.

“I cried like a baby. It was a huge release and a huge relief. I left feeling euphoric, like an enormous weight had been lifted from me. It changed me.”

Jack Black conquers his inner monsters
Jack Black is probably feeling much better these days. (Photo by Frazer Harrison/Getty Images

After this breakthrough, he went on to attend Crossroads, a private school in Santa Monica. It was here that he discovered a love of acting.

However, being on this new life path did not protect him from further tragedy. In an article from People, Black spoke about the love and loss of his “vibrant” and “creative” older brother, Howard.

Howard took Jack, age 11 at the time, to his first rock concert. From then on, Howard not only had a tremendous impact on Jack’s choice of music, but also fueled his passion for it. Tragically in 1989, Black was devastated when Howard’s life was cut short from AIDS at age 32.

Occasionally, the Tenacious D member performs some of the music that profoundly influenced him. In a previous report by the Inquisitr, Jack Black and Boy George paid tribute to Doors’ singer Jim Morrison by performing “Hello, I Love You” on Conan.

Although Jack Black is now happily married with two sons, there was a time when he thought marriage was something to desperately avoid. For a long time the actor’s childhood memory of his parents divorcing and the subsequent turmoil made him avoid the possibility altogether.

“I didn’t ever want to be in a divorce, so I was never going to get married.”

It was during the filming of King Kong that changed Black’s mind and touched his heart. As the story goes, fellow actor Andy Serkis was on the set with his wife and kids. After shooting, Serkis asked Black to read a bedtime story to the kids. Not long after, the star noticed a mounting emptiness in his life and a growing desire to start a family.

Jack Black stars in 'Goosebumps'
Jack Black attends 'Goosbumps' photo call this past summer. (Photo by Andrew Goodman/Getty Images for Sony Pictures Entertainment)

Now 46, Jack Black has conquered the monsters in his real life and is ready to take on some fictional ones in a movie based on the children’s book series, Goosebumps.

The movie follows Black’s character, based on real-life writer R.L. Stine, on a frantic mission to track down and re-capture some monsters that were accidently released. As the creatures are running wild and scaring the local town, Black recruits his movie daughter Hannah (Odeya Rush), the neighbor kid (Dylan Minnette), and a friend (Ryan Lee) to help get the monsters back in their place.

Having two sons of his own, Thomas and Samuel, Black said he really wanted to do a movie like Goosebumps that would appeal to kids.

Goosebumps felt like a perfect project, scary and funny – a great combo for me. I play a guy with a dark past and a brilliant mind, wrestling with his own demons, literally.”

Goosebumps starring Jack Black is set to hit theaters Friday, October 16. Just about every movie the King Kong star has done over the past 15 years has been a huge success and there is little doubt that this Jack Black film will be a hit as well.

[Photo by Christopher Polk/Getty Images for Sony Pictures Entertainment]