Sir Billy Connolly quit drinking after dangerous night with Sir Michael Caine

·2-min read
Sir Billy Connolly credit:Bang Showbiz
Sir Billy Connolly credit:Bang Showbiz

Sir Billy Connolly knew he had to stop drinking for good after he almost killed Sir Michael Caine.

The 78-year-old comic had quit booze for a year after his daughter Daisy was born in 1983 and admitted hitting the bottle again after was a “big mistake” because his antics could have had tragic consequences.

Writing in his autobiography, ‘Windswept & Interesting’, in an extract serialised by the Mail on Sunday newspaper, he shared: “Soon after Daisy was born in 1983, I stopped drinking for a year. But then I tried drinking again, to see what would happen. It was a big mistake. In fact, some of my subsequent antics were so extreme that they could have had tragic consequences.

“I was filming the movie ‘Water’ in St Lucia. One night I had a jolly evening with Michael Caine and some of the other cast and crew. By the time we left the restaurant, I was steaming.

“We then had to ride back to our hotel in a local bus that took a precarious route on a terrible road beside a steep ravine.

“For some reason, I thought it would be a wheeze to cover the driver’s eyes while he was driving.

“To prevent us from careering off the edge of the cliff, Michael Caine had to intervene. He talked to me about it the following morning, and I decided to quit drinking again.

“At the end of 1985, I stopped for good.”

While Billy’s wife, Pamela Stephenson, had made her feelings about his drinking “perfectly clear”, she would never give him an ultimatum.

He added: “Pamela had always avoided giving me an ultimatum, because she knew it would have to be my decision – but she had made her position perfectly clear.

“She took Daisy to New York when she became a cast member of ‘Saturday Night Live’, and I was worried she wouldn’t come back. So I decided to quit drinking while it was still my idea.”

The ‘Brave’ star hasn’t drank for 35 years and is unsure “what would happen” if he indulged again.

He added: “It’s been 35 years since I’ve had an alcoholic beverage. I’m not sure what would happen if I tried. I think I’d rather stick to a cup of tea and the football.”

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