celebrity facts 27 Brilliant People Who Were Addicted to Drugs  

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List of brilliant people addicted to drugs, loosely ranked by fame and popularity. Drugs can open an individual's mind to new ways of thinking, encouraging them to push the boundaries of art, music, and science. Several geniuses have been addicted to drugs and alcohol over the years. One famous astrophysicist advocated for marijuana use.

Who is the most famous brilliant person who was addicted to drugs? Kurt Cobain is one of the many smart people on this list. The Nirvana musician turned to heroin to cope with both physical and emotional pain. His drug addiction is believed to have been a major factor in his suicide in 1994. 

Astrophysicist Carl Sagan was a regular marijuana smoker and an advocate for the drug as a way to push the boundaries of the mind. Author Stephen King has written many of the best-selling books in recent history. King was addicted to alcohol, cocaine, and Valium, and he often smoked marijuana as well.

Why do you think so many geniuses have struggled with drug addictions? Share your thoughts in the comments section.

Thomas Edison is listed (or ranked) 1 on the list 27 Brilliant People Who Were Addicted to Drugs
Photo: Freebase/Public domain
American inventor Thomas Edison regularly consumed a cocaine elixir while he was working.

Age: Died at 84 (1847-1931)

Birthplace: Milan, Ohio, United States of America

Profession: Businessperson, Entrepreneur, Film Producer, Inventor, Scientist, + more

Credits: Frankenstein, The Patchwork Girl of Oz, Mr. Mike's Mondo Video, Electrocuting an Elephant

Also Ranked

#28 on The Most Important Leaders in U.S. History

#33 on The Greatest Minds of All Time

#27 on The Most Influential People of All Time

#85 on Famous Role Models We'd Like to Meet In Person

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Stephen King is listed (or ranked) 2 on the list 27 Brilliant People Who Were Addicted to Drugs
Photo: Freebase/CC-BY
Author Stephen King has written many of the best-selling books in recent history. King was addicted to alcohol, cocaine, and Valium, and he often smoked marijuana. He has stated publicly that he doesn't even remember writing Cujo because he was so high at the time.

Age: 69

Birthplace: Portland, Maine, United States of America

Profession: Columnist, Television producer, Novelist, Screenwriter, Actor, + more

Credits: The Shawshank Redemption, The Green Mile, The Shining, Stand by Me

Also Ranked

#22 on The Greatest American Writers of All Time

#26 on The Best Writers of All Time

#42 on The Best Science-Fiction Authors

#2 on The All-Time Greatest Horror Writers

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Kurt Cobain is listed (or ranked) 3 on the list 27 Brilliant People Who Were Addicted to Drugs
Photo:  Maia Valenzuela/Flickr/CC BY 2.0
Nirvana musician Kurt Cobain turned to heroin to cope with both physical and emotional pain. His drug addiction is believed to have been a major factor in his suicide in 1994.

Age: Died at 27 (1967-1994)

Birthplace: Aberdeen, Washington, United States of America

Profession: Guitarist, Songwriter, Musician, Singer, Artist

Credits: Moulin Rouge!, Jerry Maguire, The Big Short, Jarhead

Also Ranked

#21 on The Best Rock Vocalists

#95 on The Best Singers of All Time

#10 on The Best Frontmen in Rock

#51 on The Greatest Singers of the Past 30 Years

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Marilyn Monroe is listed (or ranked) 4 on the list 27 Brilliant People Who Were Addicted to Drugs
Photo: Antonio MarĂ­n Segovia/flickr/CC-BY-NC-ND 2.0
Film icon Marilyn Monroe suffered from insomnia and took a variety of sleeping pills to treat the condition. She died of a Barbiturate overdose and probable suicide in 1962.

Age: Died at 36 (1926-1962)

Birthplace: Los Angeles, California, United States of America

Profession: Film Producer, Model, Actor, Singer, Showgirl

Credits: Some Like It Hot, The Seven Year Itch, Gentlemen Prefer Blondes, How to Marry a Millionaire

Also Ranked

#60 on The Best Actresses in Film History

#66 on The Greatest American Actresses of All Time

#65 on Famous Women You'd Want to Have a Beer With

#29 on Which Actor Would You Bring Back for One Final Movie?

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