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John Mulaney recalls intervention Seth Meyers and other friends staged for him

The two comedians and close friends recalled the intervention during a new interview.
Comedian and former “Saturday Night Live” writer John Mulaney checked into rehab in December 2020 after a decades-long battle with addiction.
Comedian and former “Saturday Night Live” writer John Mulaney checked into rehab in December 2020 after a decades-long battle with addiction. Late Night with Seth Meyers / YouTube
/ Source: TODAY

Seth Meyers has seen his buddy John Mulaney through some amazing times and some brutal ones, too. The talk show host even helped stage an intervention for his friend when he was at the height of his drug use.

The two comedians reflected on that somewhat awkward, yet important experience during an episode of "Late Night with Seth Meyers" this week and Mulaney revealed that he was a bit taken aback when he saw a group of his friends gathered to confront him about his drug problem.

“When I opened the door, I knew right away it was an intervention,” he said. “That’s how bad of a drug problem I had, that when I opened the door and saw people, I went, ‘This is probably an intervention.’”

Mulaney was supposed to be visiting a friend from college at her apartment for dinner, but that was all a ruse that his friends dreamed up to help him address his substance abuse.

"My memory of it was how quickly you tried to tell all of us, you were like 'I get it, it's an intervention. I get it, we're good, I agree,'" Meyers recalled.

Mulaney tapped into his strong sense of humor to diffuse the situation and tried to make light of things.

“I needed to be the smartest person in the room, even at the intervention,” he said. “I remember saying to all of you, ‘Before you all read your letter, I have a drug problem and I need help,’ just to scoop you.”

Meyers was joined by several other comedians, including Fred Armisen, and Mulaney wasn't initially ready to listen to them.

"I kept insisting I was sober at the intervention," he recalled.

Meyers knew he was taking part in an important moment, but it didn't make things any easier.

"It was awful mostly because you do those things because you're really worried about your friend," he explained.

To make matters worse, Mulaney was two hours late to his intervention because he decided to stop by the "Saturday Night Live" studio to get a free haircut. Looking back on the moment, Meyers can't help but laugh while thinking back to how he felt when he learned why his friend was so late.

"I can't believe it, that son of a gun really went (to get a haircut), after all this. And it was just nice to know that with everything that you were going through and your substance issues you still went and found that free haircut," he said.

Mulaney also sees the irony in the situation now that he's sober.

"I look back and I'm like 'Wow, I was going to rehab for two months that night and I had no idea but some part of me was like 'You never know when you're gonna need a haircut," he said.

When he was going through the intervention, Mulaney wasn't exactly thrilled that his friends had joined forces to confront him.

“At that moment in time, I wanted to continue using drugs," he said.

But time brings perspective, and the actor has plenty of that now.

"Sitting here tonight, I’m so grateful to you and to everyone there for saving my life, OK? That night, I was not grateful,” he said.