Brett Butler was the star of one of the most successful comedies from the mid-1990s, Grace under fire, but since the show ended in 1998, the actress says it has been battle after battle for her. In a new revealing interview with Hollywood Reporter, Butler says she left Hollywood for a quieter life in Georgia, but returned to LA when money ran out. Now, at 63, she is at risk of being thrown out. Read on to find out how Butler ended up in such a difficult position and what happened to her fortune.
In June, Butler’s friend Lon Strickler posted a GoFundMe titled “Please help my friend Brett Butler. “Strickler wrote in the description of the fundraiser that he took the initiative to start GoFundMe because Butler” is a very private person and I know she will not ask for help. “But, he said, she desperately needs it.” The last year has put her in a critical situation, and desperation has set in, “he wrote. I am not exaggerating by using these words. It is urgent. Brett has exhausted all her resources, and the stress of threatening eviction puts a strain on her mentally and physically. “
Butler told Hollywood Reporter in an in-depth article published on August 19 that Strickler “spoke [her] to “use the crowdfunding site in her emergencies.” ‘I’m so breathless right now,’ ‘Butler remembered telling Strickler. ‘I’m ashamed. Almost ashamed to death. ‘”
As TVs and film sets shut down, “the ghost of homelessness became more and more inevitable” THR author Seth Abramovitch explained. Since article was published, Strickler raised more than $ 34,000 to Butler per. August 21 from 355 donations, well past the fundraiser’s $ 20,000 goal.
According to THR article, Butler grew up with a father who abused and abused alcohol. She overcame the alcohol disorder herself and a violent marriage when she was discovered in stand-up in New York in the mid-1980s. In 1987, she received the coveted seal of approval from Johnny Carson on The show tonight, which led to several TV appearances and eventually her own sitcom, Grace under fire.
On the ABC comedy, Butler played a fictionalized version of herself, a woman in recovery who had divorced and raised her children alone. (That part was for TV; Butler doesn’t really have kids.) During her time on the show, Butler was prescribed Vicodin for sciatica and eventually abused painkillers as well as cocaine, she told Dr. Drew Pinsky in 2012.
Abramovitch says Butler admits she was “really heavy” on the set as a result and caused chaos behind the scenes. She went to rehab between the show’s fourth and fifth seasons, and as more drug use caused Butler to miss more recordings, ABC decided to cancel Grace under fire before it even finished filming its fifth season. “I was out of my mind. Drugs will do that to you,” she said THR. “The show should have been pulled faster than it was.”
Said Butler she can only remember 80 of the 112 episodes of Grace under fire she filmed, and she “can not bring herself to see any of them,” according to Abramovitch.
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Butler had earned $ 250,000 per year. Episode Grace under fire, leading to a fortune of $ 25 million. When the show ended in 1998, Butler said THR she became sober and has “not touched drugs or alcohol since,” Abramovitch wrote. (She told Rosie O’Donnell the same in an interview in 2011.)
Post-Grace under fire, Butler found a farm online in Georgia, and she decided to leave Hollywood’s bright light for a quiet life in the South, where she grew up. Unfortunately, she could not keep up with her mortgages and the property was foreclosed.
Butler told THR she struggled to take care of the money she raised from her hit series. “I was a little too confident towards some people who worked for me and I got a lot of things stolen,” she said. Butler also decided to “borrow and give a lot of money away. I really just felt so guilty about having it – I could hardly get rid of it fast enough.”
Without a place to call home or a lot of money for her name, Butler decided to try her luck in Hollywood again, but she could not find work except a role in the soap opera The young and the restless. Then another celebrity who has dealt with addiction came to the rescue: Charlie Sheen.
Grace under fire was created by Chuck Lorre, which was also the creative force behind the Sheen vehicles Two and a half men and Anger handling. Butler told THR that she and Sheen became acquaintances under her Grace under fire days, but Lorre and Butler bumped on the head Grace under fire, which caused him to leave the series after just one season.
In 2012, with her terrible situation, Sheen lobbied to get her a concert on Anger handling, which led to a two-year period on the series. “I was still punishing myself for everything I had done. I excelled in self-loathing, and when he asked me … I went, ‘I belong,'” Butler told Pinksy in 2012.
“If it were not for Charlie, there was no way I would have been on that show,” she told me THR. “It literally saved me.”
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Butler has since appeared in some popular series over the past decade, such as ABC How to get away with murder, HBOs The remains, AMCs The Walking Dead, and most recently Apple TV + The morning show (picture here). She told THR that she earns about $ 5000 for a day’s work; even nearly 40 episodes of Anger handling only covered her rent and care for her beloved mare back in Georgia, she said.
On top of the economic pressure, in 2019, a bout of depression hit Butler hard. She found herself dealing with suicidal thoughts and agoraphobia that coincided with COVID and its accompanying lockdowns. Now that she’s out of it, and with financial help from her fans via GoFundMe, Butler is planning a comeback: returning to stand-up.
“The blanket of the pandemic was something I hid behind,” Butler said THR. “I let it cover my own uncertainties or mistakes. But it’s time to get out of it.”
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