Champagne, red wine, whisky, pastis… It’s all in a day’s work to France’s most famous actor, who makes a startling admission in the French media
It’s a disturbing figure, whatever way you look at it: In an interview with the French cinema magazine So Film, Gérard Depardieu has said that he drinks 14 bottles of alcohol per day. Also in the columns of the magazine, the actor and Russian citizen makes an attempt to justify this level of daily consumption, which is significant, to say the least:
“When I’m bored, I drink… That begins in the house with champagne or red wine… before 10am. Then, some pastis – maybe half a bottle. Then, the meal, accompanied by two bottles of wine. In the afternoon, champagne, beer and pastis again around 5pm to finish up the bottle. Later, some vodka and/or whisky.”
However, he says, “I’m never completely hammered – just a bit tipsy, cheeky. All you need is a 10-minute cat-nap and voilà, a little bit of rosé and you feel bright as a button.”
Owner of several vineyards in France, the actor even takes on the auspices of an expert sommelier a little later in the So Film interview: “If you appreciate quality wine, you take just a mouthful. You simply cannot get hammered on a grand cru wine.”
Such a level of alcohol consumption remains alarming, however, with the WHO recommending not drinking more than 2 to 3 glasses of alcohol per day: “With a consumption level of 14 bottles per day, you’re beyond all normal data and all thresholds and health references of the World Health Organisation,” says the psychoterapist Michel Lejoyeux in reaction to Depardieu’s claims in the Nouvel Observateur.
Elsewhere in the interview, Depardieu mentions “an operation to put a bypass in me because of cholesterol and other stuff… I have to be careful. In any case, I’m not going to die right now. I still have plenty of energy.”