Renowned for his impressions of other people, Darrell Hammond spent his off-hours doing everything he could to keep from feeling the deep pain of his own life.
The former “Saturday Night Live” star, who spent years on the show impersonating the likes of Bill Clinton, Al Gore, Donald Trump, Regis Philbin, a naughty Sean Connery and a host of other celebrities and politicians, reveals in his new memoir, “God If You’re Not Up There, I’m F*cked,” that he dealt with visions of a damaged childhood with drink, drugs and self-harm.
“I kept a pint of Remy in my desk at work,” he writes in the book (via the NY Post). “The drinking calmed my nerves and quieted the disturbing images that sprang into my head … when drinking didn’t work, I cut myself.”
Hammond, whose 279 appearances and 14 seasons on the show are the most of any performer, rehabbed but relapsed in 2009, beginning a crack cocaine habit that took him to the streets of Harlem and some of its crack dens. In 2010, he appeared at a standup show at Caroline’s in New York City, pronouncing himself a Vicodin addict and saying he was coming off a high on the painkiller.
The crack addiction was just the latest twist in a cocaine addiction, which began in 2002.
“I’d started adding an obscene amount of cocaine to my binges … I had to be creative about how I did it without other people catching on or letting it interfere with the work. At least too much,” he writes.
Throughout his abuse, he did manage to put in a number of supporting film roles and TV guest spots, and just starred in the play “TRU,” about Truman Capote.