Rob Lowe: Trumping Scandal

ByABC News
October 4, 2001, 8:35 PM

Oct. 4 -- Rob Lowe was once the crown prince of the bad boys and a legendary party animal until an infamous sex tape brought the bash to a halt.

"I loved fun. I spent my whole life in search of fun," he says. "I have not given up that part of myself."

But the 37-year-old actor has been tamed: On screen, he is the true believer and suffering heart, and off screen he has been sober for 11 years, still with Sheryl Berkoff, the woman he married 10 years ago. The couple have two boys.

Sowing His Oats

Settling down, Lowe tells Diane Sawyer, did not come easily. "I really felt like I had to jump on it while the getting was good," says Lowe. "For guys, I don't think you're ever ready I don't think you wake up and go, 'You know, today's the day I'm going to get married. By God, I'm ready. My house is in order and it is time.'"

But, says Lowe, "I sowed my wild oats and I'm really O.K. with the fact that I'm never going to be with another woman again. That sits well with me."

The Brat Pack Days

In the 1980s, Lowe was part of the celebrity phenomenon known as "The Brat Pack," along with Demi Moore, Emilio Estevez, Judd Nelson and Ally Sheedy. In retrospect, the group looks like a survival experiment in drugs, drinking, and taking the dare.

"We were kids," Lowe recalls. "And we weren't built for speed."

Asked whether he was happy when he became famous, he says, "You know, the best way I can put it to you is that you think that when you make it, that when you have success that's it's going to fill you up. And then it happens, if you're lucky, and you're still the same person."

In Lowe's case, that person was a good kid from a Methodist family who grew up in Ohio. He wanted to be a marine biologist until he saw a production of "Oliver Twist." Realizing acting was his dream, he started in community theater.

Commercials led to a TV role, and then in 1985, when he was 21, St. Elmo's Fire made him a million-dollar-per-movie heartthrob.