Asylum: Hollywood Tales from My Great Depression: Brain Dis-Ease, Recovery, and Being My Mother's Son

Asylum: Hollywood Tales from My Great Depression: Brain Dis-Ease, Recovery, and Being My Mother's Son

by Joe Pantoliano

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Asylum: Hollywood Tales from My Great Depression: Brain Dis-Ease, Recovery, and Being My Mother's Son by Joe Pantoliano

Most people know Joe Pantoliano from his memorable roles in The Sopranos, The Goonies, The Matrix, The Fugitive, and Risky Business, but the Emmy-winning artist has another important role—as an outspoken advocate for smashing the stigma of mental illness, or mental “dis-ease” as he prefers to call it. As a kid in Hoboken, New Jersey, he was just “Joey Pants,” the son of a fiercely controlling, schizophrenic mother. As he grew up, Joey always knew he was different. “It was as if I was born with a huge hole inside of me,” he writes. Much later in life he would be diagnosed with clinical depression, and now he has a message for the millions of people who suffer from mental illness, and for the friends and family who care for them: you are not alone.
is the story of Joe’s Hollywood success, his undiagnosed mental illness, and substance abuse, and how all three led to his awareness, diagnosis, recovery, and public activism. Picking up where his first memoir, Who’s Sorry Now, left off, this unflinching memoir will resonate with victims of mental illness and others who have witnessed its devastating effects and will give all his readers understanding and hope for the future.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781602861992
Publisher: Hachette Books
Publication date: 04/30/2013
Edition description: First Trade Paper Edition
Pages: 296
Product dimensions: 5.60(w) x 8.70(h) x 0.90(d)

About the Author

Joe Pantoliano was born in Hoboken, New Jersey. He has over one hundred movie, TV, and stage credits, and won an Emmy Award for his work on The Sopranos. He is the founder and president of No Kidding Me 2!, a non-profit organization dedicated to removing the stigma of mental illness through education. His first book, the memoir, Who’s Sorry Now: The True Story of a Stand-Up Guy was a New York Times bestseller. He lives in Connecticut with his wife, son, three daughters, and four dogs.


New York, New York and Hoboken, New Jersey

Date of Birth:

September 12, 1951

Place of Birth:

Hoboken, New Jersey

Table of Contents

Acknowledgments ix

Introduction: No Kidding, Me Too! xiii

Chapter 1 Abandon All Hope for a Better Past 1

Chapter 2 Lying for a Living 14

Chapter 3 An Egomaniac with an Inferiority Complex 48

Chapter 4 Let the Shame—Begin! 76

Chapter 5 The Hunchback of Hoboken 108

Chapter 6 If it Ain't One Thing, It's Your Mother! 123

Chapter 7 The Monkey Was Off My Bach, But the Circus Was Still in Town 151

Chapter 8 These Are the Good Old Days! 166

Chapter 9 Stuck on Stupid 183

Chapter 10 The Great Depression 210

Chapter 11 Twelve Steps out of the Mile Square 226

Epilogue: An Open Letter to the Late, Great Frank Capra 242

Book Acknowledgments 247

Index 252

What People are Saying About This

From the Publisher

Andy Garcia
“A must read! Joey Pants gives us insights so valuable that one can only call his courage to share a blessing for all.”

Tommy Lee Jones
“Joey has written a brave, fascinating book. It is astonishing what people will put themselves through for the privilege of acting. Maybe we just can’t help it.”
Andrew Davis, director of The Fugitive
“Bravo! Joe Pantoliano’s very honest, moving, hilarious, and tragic telling of a life’s journey is both profound and enlightening. Asylum will make anyone who reads it a more generous and understanding human being.”
Robert Irvin, M.D., Instructor of Psychiatry,Harvard Medical School
“Pantoliano’s book reveals his ever-evolving understanding of himself and his disease through a retrospective analysis of his life’s most painful and jubilant experiences. The book provides a model of inspiration and courage for those who suffer from mental illness in silence to come forward and seek the life-changing help that is currently available.”
Jacqueline Lerner, Ph.D., Professor of Applied Developmental Psychology, Boston College
“Joey Pantoliano shows insight, humor, and brilliant storytelling as he unpacks his life to understand his challenges. Joey has opened himself up so that others can benefit from what he has discovered about mental illness. No one should miss this candid and richly told memoir.”

Richard M. Lerner, Ph.D., Bergstrom Chair in Applied Developmental Science; Director, Institute for Applied Research in Youth Development, Tufts University
“With honesty, humor, and integrity, Joey Pantoliano uses his life story to inspire hope that each of us can thrive despite emotional challenges and family turmoil. Joey’s story exemplifies the fundamental human capacities for resilience and positive growth.”

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Asylum 4.6 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 7 reviews.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Funny entertaining stories including Hollywood and political legends. A great way to talk about struggles with BD and more importantly encourage other people affected by BD to talk about it.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This series is great oh and writer cool first res thx
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Ok.... imma scared now...
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I heard them before I saw them. <br> Three guards with two doctors were converging on my location. I figured I was still in the clear, so I played it cool and began to pretend to do some paperwork. <br> Until two of the guards grabbed me and I felt a needle sink into the back of my neck. Everything went blurry and then black. <br> I woke up with four pairs of handcuffs holding me restrained to a chair anchored into the ground. I realized I was back in my regular inmate's attire, this set was spotted with blood. A man sat behind an office desk with a cigarette in his hand. He was facing away and all I could see wasthe black collar of his suit jacket and a head of brown hair. <br> "You had a good nap, yes?" His deep voice seemed to come as a shock to me. His russian accent greatly influenced his words, making me seem small and insignifigant to him. <br> "Y-yeah..." I stammered, trying to put two and two together. Where was I? I'd never heard of this place. It looked like a psychiatrist's office, with a one-armed couch (also equipped with a set of handcuffs) and an endless row of golfing plaques on the wall. <br> I was able to make out a name on one of the plaques through the dim light and drifting cigarette smoke, it said Dr. Nikolai Straucter. But there was something different about this plaque, it was from the U.S. government's department of commerce. <br> What the he<_>ll? So the government knows about this place and it's done nothin to stop it, let alone reward it?! Someone's lost their mind! <br> The Doc turned his chair around. He was the single most scarriest person I've ever seen. A his right eye was dead, completely white with a scar streaking down from his upper forehead down through his eye and to his chin. His nose was knobby and had obviously been broken multiple times. His left eye was very badly bloodshot and the bloodvessels in his forehead popped like that of a hero<_>ine addict. "I have been told you have been causing us a lot of trouble, young man. Keep up this behavior and you will never see the light of day again. But then again, now that you're here, you probably never will." With the most demonic smile I have ever seen, he turned back around in his chair and I felt yet another needle pierce my neck. I was out cold in seconds. <br> I woke up and was back in my original room. No one was in it and I checked the clock on the wall. It was quarter 'til one, lunch time. I saw a big white piece of paper taped to the small window of the door that said that everything was back to normal and that must mean everyone's at lunch. I wasn't hungry. I sat on my bed and couldn't get that grotesque smile out of my face. This Dr. Straucter was top-of-the-line scum. I couldn't live here anymore. <br> And that was when it all began. The escape plan that was gonna get me and everyone else stuck in this he<_>llhole out.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
An honest book about the struggle to overcome depression and addiction.