John Cusack on Psychedelic Drugs: 'I Did Do Acid and Mushrooms'

John Cusack: "Mushrooms and peyote are one thing, but high-powered blotter acid can scramble your fuckin’ brain."

When John Cusack took magic mushrooms in Hot Tub Time Machine, he used his first-hand experience to inform the stony character he was playing. Now that he's portrayed Beach Boy Brian Wilson in Love & Mercy, which opens today, the actor discusses his high times with hallucinogenic drugs.

In an interview with the Daily Beast, Cusack states: 

'Every time you take a drug it’s like a prayer - you’re trying to get to a higher state of consciousness where things flow through you.

'Acid is a serious fuckin’ drug. Mushrooms and peyote are one thing, but high-powered blotter acid can scramble your fuckin’ brain. I did do acid and mushrooms when I was younger. There were two phases of that. When you’re a younger man, you want to come as close to death as you can without dying; you mix fear, adrenaline, drugs and adventure in a way that’s pretty dangerous, and you’re lucky to survive. 

'Then I got into sweat lodges and these intense meditative things where you’d take your body to a place where you have these psychedelic experiences. If you’re more into the shamanistic ritual, that’s probably a better way to go if you want to survive. Drugs have been used shamanistically to go on vision quests, and there’s definitely a shamanistic quality to a lot of that music that I think psychedelics played a part in.

'I don’t have any regrets about any of my experiences because I’m still here.'

Cusack has also appeared in High Fidelity, Being Jon Malkovich, Grosse Pointe Blank and The Road to Wellville.

Steve Bloom

Steve Bloom

Publisher of, former editor of High Times and Freedom Leaf and co-author of Pot Culture and Reefer Movie Madness.