Transcript for How Michael Douglas tried to help son caught up in a severe drug addiction: Part 2
Reporter: A father and son listen to a song they once loved and played together. Old man look at my life I'm a lot like you were old man look at my life I'm a lot like you were Reporter: The song from the movie "Wonder boys", where young Cameron was working with his dad as part of the crew. It was a nice time we had together. I was proud of the work he was doing on the picture. Reporter: He was 34 when his first child was born. It's a cute tushie. It is a cute tushie. Same tush? Even better. Reporter: Cam. Cam. Reporter: So, how did it happen? His little boy changing so much and becoming the teenager caught up in a rough and druggie crowd. Do you look back and say, "The one thing I think maybe I could have tried was" -- You know -- I -- I'm just, you know, laughing, because you rack your brain and you take it personally in the beginning. You start blaming yourself. Then you look at your genetic makeup. My career was first. That's your choice, honey. That has nothing to do with me. My career came before my family. What's on your mind, kemosabe? My marriage was not great. And so you do hide yourself in your work. I should have, you know, focused more on my family. But that's -- that's -- that's hard to say when you're in the midst of a career. But you are -- you're in your own mind stepping out of your father's shadow, trying to create a life for your own. Reporter: And what a shadow. It's the stuff of legend in Hollywood. How issue danielovitch, son of a penniless junk collector from Russia, changes his name to Kirk Douglas and uses his intensity, aggressive masculinity, to fight his way to Ladies and gentlemen, Reporter: Kirk Douglas has said that he worked all the time and admitted he wasn't much of a father. Take a look at his four sons sitting in the audience the night he receives an Oscar they are adoring. But his son, Michael, has said he went to rehab once for alcohol and exhaustion. Another son, Joel, now sober after a struggle with alcohol. And the youngest son, Eric, especially exuberant and happy. Eric battles cocaine, alcohol and pills. And dies of an overdose at age 46. His little nephew is about to grow up deep into cocaine. In a family rescue mission, grandfather and father invite Cameron, who has a get for acting, to co-star in a movie with them, as long as he goes to rehab first. The movie is called "It runs in the family." Look at that thing! Ha-ha! Reporter: You knew you were good in it? Yes. Yeah. Hey, everybody. Reporter: He even got to play scenes with one of his favorite people on Earth -- his actual grandmother, a former actress who always made him feel loved no matter what. I'm sorry. Oh, that's all right, honey. Reporter: And what about that young, beautiful mother? She is still very much apart of his life. Divorced from his dad, but moving on with young children from another relationship. And his dad marries Catherine zeta-jones. They have two young children of their own and she warmly reaches out to Cameron to be with them, though sometimes he just doesn't show. She's always been a big supporter of me and has been extremely loving and inclusive, even in the midst of all my craziness. Reporter: In his book, he writes that sometimes there's just a crack deep inside you. The one you try to fill with drugs, and then the drugs take over, as you recede from the safety of any shore. I thought that I was fundamentally not put together properly and that, since that was the case, I was just going to take it as far as I could take it and come what may. It was almost like, you know, the one thing that I could count on. You know? And I guess, you know, I didn't have the courage to try to move forward without it. Reporter: So look again at his double life. Smiling with his family and retreating. Playing dice with death. A friend has shown him a new way to use cocaine -- inject it as a liquid into his veins. Your blood brings it up into your tongue, and you can taste it. People call it a "Bell ringer," because you literally hear bells ringing in your head. Reporter: He is using two to three times an hour. The needles scar his veins, they're collapsing. First in his arms, then in his legs. At one point, you do your rib cage? My ribcage, my neck -- Reporter: You shot cocaine into your neck? Yes. Reporter: He has three seizures. He writes that every injection pushes him close to overdose. He's so paranoid from the cocaine that sometimes he holes up in his closet for days. He is hiding from his father. How are you all? Michael! Reporter: The famous father we watch looking glamorous, thinking, he must be living a trouble-free life. But in reality, he's despairing for his child, just like so many other parents. We can hear every night all across the country. Trying to figure out what to do, what to do, what to do. It's like having jekyll and Hyde live in your house. Trying to save his life. Never seen him as bad as he is. I don't know what else to do. And he's missing in action right now. Reporter: Michael Douglas, after years of struggle, tries to reach his son. He was desperate -- Desperate. Reporter: Beside himself. He has made a decision. He finally gets Cameron on the phone and says, "You're my son. I love you, but I think you're going to die." Either going to kill somebody or you were going to get killed. Reporter: He tells Cameron he just cannot do this anymore. It's true. We had -- had reached a point where I thought I was going to lose him, based on everything I'd seen. And was not willing to emotionally commit any more. Reporter: And you said, don't you love me anymore, dad? Those words were heartbreaking to me. At what point do you protect yourself or your other loved ones around you before you're getting -- get dragged into this and it falls apart? It destroys you. It just destroys you. Old man look at my life I'm a lot like you were Reporter: His son remembers the dark days when he would play that song alone. Especially when I was really starting to spiral. And I think, more than anything, I wanted to believe in those lyrics. Like a coin that
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