Oh man, Chris Klein, right? If he doesn’t reek of the year 2000, I don’t know who does. Remember when he was so popular? He was all over Tiger Beat and Twist, and he even dated Katie Holmes, and I always pretended to love him even though I didn’t think he was all that cute. But American Pie! Here on Earth! … Other movies! These are classics and I do have to respect him for that.
Chris Klein became an overnight heartthrob after starring in Election and the 1999 breakout hit American Pie.
“It was nothing short of magic,” says the actor, of his early stardom – something he quickly learned wouldn’t last forever.
Klein slid into a battle with alcoholism that nearly cost him his career – and his life.
“I would have died, and I think about that every single day,” the actor, 33, tells PEOPLE in an exclusive new interview.
After two DUI arrests and a jail sentence, the Nebraska-reared actor knew he had to turn his life around. Now nearly 19 months sober, Klein opens about his struggles for the first time.
“It got to the point where I was a fragile shadow of the young man that came into this business,” he says. “Today, I’m the luckiest guy alive.”
See what I mean? That’s respectable, right? And I have to say, after all these years and all these issues, he is looking quite a bit cuter. Could 2012 be Chris Klein’s year?