Mark Wahlberg, who topped this year’s Forbes list of the highest-paid actors, says if he could be forgiven for any of his movies, it wouldn’t be a Transformers film, “Daddy’s Home” or “Ted 2,” but rather the acclaimed “Boogie Nights,” in which he played a porn star.
“I just always hope that God is a movie fan and also forgiving, because I’ve made some poor choices in my past,” Wahlberg, a devoted Catholic, told the Chicago Tribune during an appearance with Cardinal Blase Cupich to help draw young people into the church. “ ‘Boogie Nights’ is up there at the top of the list,” the 46-year-old actor said of the 1997 film.
In writer-director Paul Thomas Anderson’s critical and commercial hit, also starring Heather Graham, Luis Guzman, William H. Macy, Julianne Moore and Burt Reynolds, Wahlberg plays Eddie Adams aka adult-movie star Dirk Diggler. From humble Hollywood dishwasher, “he falls immediately into star mode, and before long is leading a conducted tour of his new house, where his wardrobe is ‘arranged according to color and designer,’ ” Roger Ebert wrote in his review. Anderson was nominated for a Best Screenplay Academy Award, while Moore and Reynolds earned acting nods. Budgeted at an estimated $15 million, the film earned $45.1 million worldwide.
Wahlberg also spoke, as he has previously, of his time behind bars as a teen for a racially motivated assault on two Vietnamese men in Boston in 1988, hospitalizing one. Incarceration, the actor said, was a “big wake-up call for me. A lot of people go to God when they get into trouble. When I heard the jail doors close behind me . . . I knew that was just the beginning for me.”
He added, “I feel remorse when I’ve made mistakes. If I could go back and change a lot of things that I did, I would. I look for ways to give back.”