Aaron Sorkin revealed that he had a stroke while working on his upcoming Broadway revival of “Camelot” in a new interview with the New York Times published Wednesday.
“There was a minute when I was concerned that I was never going to be able to write again and I was concerned in the short-term that I wasn’t going to be able to continue writing ‘Camelot,’” the playwright, screenwriter and director told the outlet. “Let me make this very, very clear, I’m fine. I wouldn’t want anyone to think I can’t work. I’m fine.”
According to The Times, Sorkin began bumping into walls and spilling his orange juice while walking to and from places like his kitchen and home office in November – two months before rehearsals were set to start. Sorkin immediately called his doctor, who said his had blood pressure so high that he was “supposed to be dead.”
The Times reports that Sorkin still can’t taste food, slurred his words for around a month after the event and “until recently” couldn’t sign his name.
“Mostly it was a loud wake-up call,” the Oscar winner added. “I thought I was one of those people who could eat whatever he wanted, smoke as much as he wanted, and it’s not going to affect me. Boy, was I wrong.”
Sorkin, who had been a heavy smoker since high school, told the Times that the habit had been a part of his writing process “the way a pen was part of it.”
But after the stroke, he has quit cold turkey, adjusted his diet and is working out twice a day, the Times noted.
Though Sorkin did not initially want to go on record about the experience, he later came around to it in an effort to raise awareness.
“If it’ll get one person to stop smoking, then it’ll be helpful,” he said.