Oscar-winning actor Michael Douglas penned a heartfelt letter to Judge Richard Berman in a bid for him to show mercy on 31-year-old Cameron Douglas – who is to be sentenced for drug dealing and possession today (20.04.10) – because he knows how hard it can be being the offspring of a famous star.
Michael – the son of ‘Spartacus’ actor Kirk Douglas – wrote: "I have some idea of the pressure of finding your own identity with a famous father. I’m not sure I can comprehend it with two generations to deal with." The ‘Wall Street: Money Never Sleeps’ star – who has two young children, Dylan, nine, and seven-year-old Carys, with wife Catherine Zeta-Jones – also blames some of Cameron’s actions on his family background.
He said: "He is an adult and responsible for his own actions. We do know, however, that genes, family and peer pressure are a strong influence on a substance abuser." In the handwritten five-page letter, Michael, 65, notes many members of the Douglas family have struggled with addiction although their names have been blacked out. He also wrote Cameron grew up a single child in a "bad marriage" and his acting career often took him away from home but Cameron is now completely "sober".
Michael’s letter is the latest from the family as they attempt to soften Cameron’s punishment. His grandfather Kirk wrote: "Of course, as his grandfather – by the way he calls me Pappy (never grandpa) – I am prejudiced. I was shocked when he got in such a mess… I am convinced that Cameron could be a fine actor and a person that cares for others. I hope I can see that happen before I die. I love Cameron." Stepmother Catherine also showed her support, writing:
"My stepson is a caring, considerate, worthy human being, but nevertheless, the disease that for years he has tried to combat, did take over again. "What is wrong is wrong, but may all these positive attributes prevail, so that a facility that he is positioned in will help rehabilitate him." Cameron faces up to 10 years in jail. Photo: Fame Pictures