Kevin Hart is getting real about the dangers of fame.
The A-list comedian sat opposite mindfulness and lifestyle guru Jay Shetty for the newest episode of his podcast, On Purpose With Jay Shetty, and the two talked about an array of subjects including Hart’s relationship with his late father, building generational wealth and how Dave Chappelle’s example often inspired him and Chris Rock to step up their stand-up game.
Hart also spent a chunk of time sharing his perspective on the cult of celebrity. “The biggest drug. It’s not cocaine, it’s not heroin, it’s fame. Anything you want, everything you want, it’s a thing,” explained Hart. “And if you can’t handle this thing, the consequences attached are severe. Do you know you? And are you OK with you? If you are not, it’ll break you.”
It’s like a monster, he continued.
“My monsters have been masked in disguise in various different ways but I’ve been able to pinpoint them throughout the years because some of those monsters got stronger … developed. You’re talking about the world of an ego. The idea of who you think you are versus what you are or the idea of expectations and needs as to what you feel you need and what you have to have,” Hart told Shetty, who will soon release his new book, 8 Rules of Love — How to Find it, Keep it, and Let it Go, from Simon & Schuster on Jan. 31. “That’s a monster that’s feeding that engine of, well, now that I’m making money, this is what I should have, this is how I should look, this is how I’m supposed to be. That’s a monster that you’re feeding because ultimately you’re buying in.”
The conversation also saw Hart open up about his relationship to Chappelle and Rock, specifically how the former would set a standard on the stand-up stage that would force the others to rethink their sets.
“Dave Chappelle has made me and Chris Rock feel stupid at times when it comes to our choice and material. We have watched Dave in our earlier stages of just working on our set. We would spend time at The Cellar and one would come and we would all go and Dave would go up and me and Chris had just went up and we were happy about our material,” he explained. “There’s been times where we have looked at each other and we balled our papers up and said, ‘We gotta start over, we gotta start over.’ Not because of jealousy or envy. Because we challenge each other. We want the best for not only each other, but for ourselves.”
All three have achieved massive success and Hart said he’s now focused on leaving a piece of the pie for his children. “We just got a shot at something different. We got a shot at generational wealth. We got a shot at changing the ‘trajectory’ within our culture of opportunity. We got a shot to make this normal. Once again, I’m looking past me. I’m looking at the bigger piece to the plan.”
To hear Hart’s full comments on complacency, the best memory from his childhood and why being a multi-hyphenate is the way to go, see the full episode below.
This article was originally published by The Hollywood Reporter.