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'Arrow' star Stephen Amell has panic attack during interview

“I’m mentally exhausted," he said before the anxiety attack. "I just need a break.”
2019 Summer TCA Press Tour - Day 13
Actor Stephen Amell started to have a panic attack during a recent interview for a podcast.Amy Sussman
/ Source: TODAY

"Arrow" star Stephen Amell revealed in a tweet this weekend that he recently suffered a "full on" panic attack during a podcast interview about the end of his hit superhero TV show.

The 38-year-old star sat down with Michael Rosenbaum, the host of the podcast “Inside of You,” and halfway through, started to experience an anxiety attack.

“He was talking about life and he just seemed like, he was just finishing up season eight of 'Arrow,' he looked a little tired … and I could just tell something was a little off,” Rosenbaum said in his introduction to the podcast. “You look at him and you think, 'This is just the perfect human being' … but things start to unwind.”

At the beginning of the interview, Rosenbaum, an actor who starred in the superhero TV series "Smallville," chatted with Amell about mental health. Amell mentioned he had cried twice that day and said he was worried he would cry during their conversation.

“I’ve really really been struggling with the end of the show,” he said. “I’m mentally exhausted.”

He said his wife even made him go to the doctor before the podcast taping because he was so down.

“Couple weeks ago … my family was going out to Palm Springs and I just looked at my wife and I’m like, ‘I can’t even get myself off the ground right now,’” he said. “Laid on the couch for two days, didn’t eat.”

He added he needed to mentally reset and wished he had taken a vacation without his phone after the show wrapped up.

“I just need a f-- break,” he said. “I want to be a dad, I want to be a husband and I don’t even really want to talk to my friends that much. I just need a break.”

After explaining his mental health struggles, he started to have a panic attack during the interview. Amell said he was feeling hot and added that he might be sick.

"I'm not feeling well at all,” he said. “I think I just got to go. I just kind of want to walk, do you mind? I just need fresh air.”

Rosenbaum explained Amell could have canceled the rest of the interview, but insisted on coming back to finish two weeks later.

“As much as he plays a superhero on TV, you know, we’re human beings and I commend him for coming back,” Rosenbaum said. “It was a little crazy.”

In the follow-up chat, Amell recounted walking home from the podcast in the cold.

“I just wanted to listen to a podcast by myself and walk,” Amell explained. He added he knew there was nothing physically wrong with him, but mentally he was struggling with the end of “Arrow.”

“The leaving of the show combined with just not really breaking away from it in my life — just in terms of getting back into Los Angeles — it was like I needed this clean break,” he said. “I needed to go on a trip, I needed to drop my phone … I just hadn’t disconnected.”

He said he should have just canceled the interview with Rosenbaum, but he had planned to promote a movie he starred in called “Code 8.” Amell explained he’d been triggered by their conversation about mental health and his trip to the doctor earlier that day.

“In fact, nothing was f-- wrong with me, and that’s when you have that realization where you go, ‘Oh my God, this is in my head,’” he explained. “I’d rather them tell me, ‘No no no, you need to have your spleen removed’ … but no there was nothing.”

He said he’s been working on self-care in the weeks since.

“I took real stock in the fact that I was taking a break and I really needed to,” he said. “You want to fix it immediately but that’s not the way it works.”

Amell posted on Twitter Sunday about the podcast to promote it and said he’s feeling much better.

“I was in a really bad spot and I’m happy to report that I’m doing much better,” he said.