Alcohol kills people all over the world every day. You can help prevent more deaths from alcohol by drinking responsibly and seeking alcoholism treatment. Alcohol is the third-leading preventable cause of death in the United States, killing an estimated 95,000 people yearly. But did you know Oliver Reed died due to alcoholism?
Oliver Reed (the actor who played Proximo in Gladiator) died of a heart attack while filming. He allegedly became ill after drinking three bottles of Captain Morgan, eight German beers, cognac, and numerous shots of whiskey at a pub in Malta. The establishment was renamed “Ollie’s Last Pub.”
Controversies That Surrounded Oliver Reed
Due to his hell-raising issues, Oliver Reed was denied the role of James Bond in the 1973 film Live and Let Die.
With Reed we would have had a far greater problem to destroy his image and re-model him as James Bond. We just didn’t have the time or the money to do that.Bond Svengali Cubby Broccoli, James Bond Producer
Reed, who modeled himself after the infamous Hollywood swordsman Errol Flynn, was cruel to stars he didn’t like, referring to Jack Nicholson as a balding midget. However, he admired the work of Lee Marvin, Rock Hudson, and Rod Steiger.
Reed didn’t turn us down. We turned him down. We like our stars to have respect. Oliver Reed didn’t respect anyone and he showed it.Robert Shaw, Actor
He also appeared as a supporting character in the 1978 film The Big Sleep because he admired fellow hard-boiled boozer Robert Mitchum. In his 1979 autobiography, Reed All About Me, he stated that he was less awed by his career.
It’s a load of bollocks really, shafting the girlies and downing the sherbie.Oliver Reed, Actor
Oliver Reed’s Unhealthy Obsession with Alcohol
The effects of alcohol had taken their toll. Reed was grossly overweight by 1987, suffering from gout and severe kidney problems that forced him to go sober for a year before resuming drinking with a vengeance.
Reed died of a heart attack on May 2, 1999, while filming Gladiator in Valletta, Malta. He was 61 years old at the time.
He hadn’t had a drink for months before filming started. Everyone said he went the way he wanted, but that’s not true. It was very tragic. He was in an Irish bar and was pressured into a drinking competition. He should have just left, but he didn’t.Omid Djalili, Actor in the Gladiator
The film had to be completed using computer-generated imagery (CGI) techniques and a mannequin in one scene. Despite this, he was posthumously nominated for a BAFTA Award for Best Supporting Actor.
Reed might have had a twilight career that atoned for his mistakes by refusing significant parts and blowing chances for great performances if he hadn’t fallen so spectacularly off the wagon. Unfortunately, we will never know. (Source: Revolution Watch)
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