Demi Moore’s new book, released Tuesday, includes several bombshell revelations, and has prompted a media tour that’s become a heart-wrenching walk down memory lane.
Promoting her new memoir, “Inside Out,” the actress opened up in a series of interviews about shocking life experiences she revealed in her book, including being the victim of sexual assault, her turbulent years with ex-husband Ashton Kutcher and her spiral into alcohol and substance abuse.
Moore, 56, first opened up in a profile for the New York Times, but as the promotional blitz ramped up this week, she sat down with ABC’s Diane Sawyer to elaborate on the scintillating stories she laid bare in “Inside Out.” (Yes, her belly-baring Vanity Fair cover that trailblazed a trend in the magazine biz is also discussed.)
Her rocky childhood
The personal tale begins with the “G.I. Jane” star discussing her troubled childhood. She reveals that, when she was a kid, her teenage mother battled alcoholism and suicide, and Moore remembers, at age 12, digging pills out of her mom’s mouth. She later learned that the man she thought was her dad wasn’t her biological father.
Her mother also took her to bars to get attention from men, Moore writes. That apparently led to Moore being sexually assaulted by a man her mother knew. The man claimed that her mother “whored” her out for $500.
“I don’t think it was a straightforward transaction, but she still did give him the access and put me in harm’s way,” she told Sawyer. Surprisingly, Moore dedicated the tome to her mother and her own three daughters. Moore said it’s meant to help others who might be struggling.
Moore attempted to break away from her troubled youth by taking up acting, saying she had a “fake it till you make it” mindset and the confidence that she didn’t have anything to lose. She had her breakthrough at age 19 when she appeared on the ABC soap opera “General Hospital.”
But she tempered her industry fears with alcohol and cocaine; that irony played out when she portrayed a cocaine user in 1985’s “St. Elmo’s Fire.” But her appearance in the youth drama led to a directive to go to rehab. After that, she stayed clean for nearly 20 years.
Her career highs were well-documented after that, with “Ghost,” “A Few Good Men,” “Indecent Proposal” and “G.I. Jane” catapulting her to become one of the highest-paid actresses in Hollywood. That also earned her the nickname “Gimmie Moore”: “Why shouldn’t I? Why shouldn’t all women be paid equal to the quality of the work that they’re doing?” she told Sawyer.
She later took a break from Hollywood to raise her three daughters with then-husband Bruce Willis. “I think that we did a magnificent job of making sure that our children knew they were loved,” she said.
The Kutcher years’ highs and lows
Moore’s love affair with and subsequent marriage to “That ’70s Show” alum Ashton Kutcher was closely tracked in the tabloids because of their stark age difference. Moore was 40 at the time and had already split with Willis. Kutcher was 25.
“I was a 40-year-old who had a big life,” Moore writes in the book. “And Ashton’s adult life was just beginning — I didn’t see all that because I was inside of it. I just felt like a 15-year-old girl hoping somebody liked me.”
“I think that I had been responsible for so much of my life, and all of a sudden this window opened up where I was safe,” she told Sawyer in a segment that aired Tuesday. “I had money. He loved my children. It wasn’t something he feared. He seemed to be comfortable with the enormity of the ex-husband [Willis]. I mean, you know, I felt like I was not coming with baggage. I had trunks.”
The happy years didn’t last long, however. The new book appears to do a lot of finger-pointing, blaming Kutcher for encouraging the couple to have threesomes and break her sobriety, while he allegedly cheated. She also learned of Kutcher’s cheating scandal through media reports. “Because we had brought a third party into our relationship, Ashton said, that blurred the lines and, to some extent, justified what he’d done,” Moore writes.
A rep for Kutcher did not immediately respond to The Times’ request for comment on Moore’s allegations.
In a separate interview with Ellen DeGeneres airing Tuesday, Moore said that she talked to Kutcher before the book’s release. She also acknowledged that all the experiences she wrote about were told from her point of view.
Miscarriage at 42 and divorce
Moore also revealed that she got pregnant at age 42 but had a miscarriage six months into the pregnancy, a revelation she also made in the new New York Times profile. Moore said she and Kutcher had tried in vitro fertilization several times as well.
“I really lost sight of everything that was right in front of me, which is the family I had. And I think the weight that it put on Ashton — you know, it’s kind of a natural thing to pull back when somebody’s, you know, clinging too tight,” she told Sawyer.
Moore said she had broken her two decades of sobriety by drinking again and taking 12 Vicodin pills a day.
The couple officially called it quits on their six-year marriage in November 2011 after Moore hit a downward spiral and suffered a breakdown before briefly reentering rehab. They reportedly reached a divorce settlement in 2013, not long after Kutcher began dating his “That ’70s Show” costar Mila Kunis, whom he later married and had two children with.
“I really know that there are parts of what occurred with this relationship ending that were a level of devastating for me that wasn’t really just about that relationship,” Moore told Sawyer. “It was really about my whole life.”
She continued, “It was about being the 2-year-old who wasn’t safe — that this really represented that I’m not lovable, that I’m not deserving. And that’s not about him. That’s all just about me.”
Sawyer’s interview will continue to air on ABC’s multiple platforms, as well as “Good Morning America” and “Nightline,” through Wednesday.