Before They Were Stars: Helen Hunt Shows That Drugs Are Bad, Mmmkay?

As you well know, I love doing “Before They Were Stars” features on celebrities who’ve acted in hokey afterschool specials, such as Viggo Mortenson, Cynthia Nixon and Joaquin Phoenix, but none of them got to chew the scenery quite like Helen Hunt did when she was 18 years old and appeared in this anti-drug made-for-TV movie called Desperate Lives, which has often been referred to as a cross between an ABC Afterschool Special and Reefer Madness. Helen plays a high school student who tries some angel dust and winds up jumping out a second-story window and cutting herself with shards of glass in a drug-fueled rage! Believe it or not, this wasn’t only the anti-drug project Miss Hunt did around this time period as she also made a guest appearance on an episode of The Facts of Life as a pot-smoking high school student.

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