Channing Tatum Confesses to Alcoholism -- Sort Of

Channing TatumChanning Tatum, who's having a very good year careerwise, what with his roles in 22 Jump Street, Jupiter Ascending, the upcoming Magic Mike sequel (amusingly titled Magic Mike XXL), and the recent announcement that he'll star as Gambit in X-Men: Apocalypse, recently sat down with GQ to share a number of oddball facts about himself. Apparently he loves confetti cake, is a devoted Biggest Loser fan, had an imaginary friend named Boy when he was a child, once made an intimate penis-related bet with Jonah Hill, and oh yeah, he's a "high functioning" alcoholic.

Wait, what? That little confessional -- that accompanies the palpably adoring "Channing Tatum: IN IT TO WIN IT" feature story -- sure took an unexpected turn.

In the context of the interview, it sounds like Tatum was joking. He was talking about how he likes to sculpt in his spare time, often with a bottle of wine on hand, and added,

I probably drink too much, you know. My wife, that's what she bought into. I'm probably a pretty high-functioning, I guess, you know, I would say, alcoholic, I guess. There's probably a tendency to escape. I equate it to creativity, and I definitely equate it to having a good time.

Still, even if he was exaggerating or kidding or something, it's still sort of a weird thing to say. I mean, speaking as an actual alcoholic. I try not to be one of those sensitive people who's like, DON'T EVEN JOKE ABOUT IT, but ... I don't know, being an alcoholic, high-functioning or otherwise, isn't really all that awesome? It sort of sucks? It consumes your life and eventually your function level isn't so high and in fact maybe you get acquainted with a hugely unpleasant concept referred to as "rock bottom"?

I'm thinking if he was pressed about his choice of words, Tatum would say he didn't mean he really thought he was an alcoholic. He probably just meant that he really likes having his drinks and he's come to have all these pleasant associations with drinking and he laughed it off to the interviewer. But it's not unlike an actress saying, "Oh, I'm always on a diet, I'm probably a high-functioning anorexic, ha ha!" The only way to react is with discomfort: "Um, really? Is everything okay? Do you ... need help?" And she goes, "What! I was just kidding!" And you're like, "Ohhhhh. Okay." And then everyone digs their toes around on the ground and feels SUPER awkward.

What do you think about Channing Tatum's 'confession'?


Image via GQ

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Rhond... RhondaVeggie

Being an addict doesn't have to mean being non-functional or hitting rock bottom. If he can't get through the day without it he's an addict. 

Jodi Lauttamus

I KIND of felt the same way...he used a really strong diagnostic term to describe a more serious disease that he may or may not have, but is not a joking matter...and i'm not trying to be a killjoy, either...he may or may not lose the tolerance of his high functioning status, and have to confront a much bigger problem, if it is indeed true...maybe he was just speaking jokingly, but people need to be careful when they're getting into associative territory like drinking/alcoholism, dieting/anorexia...there's a fine line, and no one should joke about crossing it...

nonmember avatar Marissa

I think you might be projecting a little bit here Linda. When someone has no clue about addictions they might joke or be a bit insensitive to these issues. I think he meant to be funny.

nonmember avatar sooboo

Sounds to me like he might have issues with alcohol especially when he says "that's what my wife's bought into". I don't think he was joking. I think we all aren't used to actors being so casually candid.

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