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Steve-O Dishes on 'Dancing With the Stars' Predictions and 'Jackass 4'

by Katy Kroll, posted Apr 15th 2011 5:00PM
Steve-O is best known as the habitually naked stuntman from the 'Jackass' franchise who's willing to do almost anything for attention. But since sobering up more than three years ago, he's started to branch out by appearing on season 8 of 'Dancing With the Stars,' becoming a poster boy for PETA, embarking on a one-man comedy tour and penning an upcoming memoir about the ups and downs of his life.

Last year, 'Jackass 3-D' raked in more than $100 million at the box office, proving that being a "professional idiot" (as Steve-O calls it) still pays off.

Here, he opens up to us about why he did 'Dancing With the Stars' and who he thinks will win this season. He also talks about performing stunts sober for the first time and whether there might be a 'Jackass 4.'

AOL TV: Why did you sign up for 'Dancing With the Stars'?
Steve-O: At that point, I had kind of been minding my own business for a whole year, just focusing on sobriety, and it just seemed like a safe, wholesome family show. I was living in a halfway house, and all my rehearsals were just down the road, so I never had to travel. Those were my reasons for doing it: It was a safe environment, right down the road.

Going into the show, did you think you had a chance of winning?
I wasn't so delusional that I ever thought that I had a chance of winning. I just figured I was gonna give it my best, you know? I never thought I was gonna win, but I wasn't ready to be as bad as I was. [Laughs]

Still, you wound up being the season's underdog and hanging in there for six weeks. What was the experience like overall?
It was really uncomfortable, but I'm glad I did it. It still really makes me kinda sentimental, and makes me feel really good. At that time, I was so new to sobriety and so unsure of myself. I still had major issues with guilt, shame and remorse for a lot of stuff I had done that I wasn't proud of, and I was having a lot of trouble forgiving myself for that stuff. But having all that support and love that came through in the votes, it really meant a lot to me.

Do you have any insight into who might win this season?
Well, I'm really good friends with Mike Catherwood. So, of course, he was my favorite. Now I can only operate with a second favorite: Hines Ward. It doesn't seem like he has any pre-existing dancing ability, but he's clearly trying and he has a good attitude about it. He has a good smile and makes it look fun. I'm not discounting Kirstie Alley or Ralph Macchio at all, but Hines is someone I really enjoy watching.

Was filming 'Jackass 3-D' the first time you had done stunts sober?
Yeah, it was my first time filming 'Jackass' sober. It was so important for me to prove to myself, and the world, that I still had that in me. I really felt like I had something to prove -- and that was that sobriety hadn't turned me into a boring, lame sissy and hadn't robbed me of my personality. In one sense, though, I was more dreading doing the stunts than I ever did before, because I knew what was going on. Being sober doesn't make doing crazy stunts any easier, but I was more eager than ever to be doing them because I felt like I had so much to prove.

Will there be a 'Jackass 4'?
There's a strong argument for quitting while you're ahead, especially when we've pushed our luck as much as we have. But, at the same time, we genuinely love doing it. And it's popular; it does really well. I think there's an equally strong argument for not doing it as there is for doing it. Which argument will win out remains to be seen. I just know that I haven't gotten any phone calls about it.

You've written a book, which comes out this summer. What's the premise and how did you come up with it?
It's a memoir called 'Professional Idiot,' and it's not a flattering story at all. It starts off when I was locked up in jail in Orlando in 1996 for my second drunk driving arrest. While I was in there, I had my front teeth broken. I had been kicked out of my house. I had no job, no money, no nothing and I was in jail. My life was just an absolute disaster at that point.

But while in jail, I got my hands on some notebook paper and started writing my memoir. [Laughs] The very first thing I wrote was: "They call me Steve-O. I'm thinking about switching back to Steve Glover because now I've kinda begun a career and I don't know if I want a nickname when I'm famous." I thought it was a great place to start the book because, as I finished scrawling out these handwritten pages, I was passing them over to the prisoner on the bunk next to me and all these inmates started reading them. It was pretty hilarious because, as anyone would tell you, if you wind up in jail, it's probably best to mind your own business. But I was incapable of following that advice. I needed all those other inmates to not only pay attention to me, but to read these ridiculous stories I was writing. That's how it's been my whole life.

Over the past few years, you've been an outspoken vegan and PETA activist. How did you get involved in that lifestyle?
Very shortly before I got sober, I became pescatarian [a vegetarian who eats fish]. That was really inspired by crazy hallucinations and voices I was hearing as a result of all the drugs I was doing. It all lead me to believe that I was gonna somehow be punished for the suffering I caused to animals. So, initially, I was motivated purely by fear of being punished in some other realm or some other life. Then, in sobriety, it occurred to me that being driven by fear is not really the way I want to live my life. I changed my perspective on everything and arrived at the conclusion that I'm a happier person if I'm more compassionate in my lifestyle, so I stopped eating fish and eggs, and bought a carton of soy milk, and I've been vegan ever since. I feel better mentally, physically and spiritually. It's absolutely bettered every area of my life. There's no question about that.

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I might also add that those who emerge from the hardest lessons having really learned something carry it with them like a special gem. It will always be something of value that they have. I was sorry to see him leave DWTS. I watch the show sometimes, and I enjoyed watching him and Lacey. I voted for them.

April 25 2011 at 8:27 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

Everything "Mr. Glover" said here makes sense. Glad to see he's finding some contentment. I much prefer sober people who experience life raw. They're much more interesting in the long run. Remember that Steve!

April 25 2011 at 8:24 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

Wow, I had no respect for Steve-O until I read this article. I had no idea that he had a drug problem but that explains why he did some of the things he did. I’m glad to see he is working on sobriety even if he didn’t do a very good job on Dancing with the Stars. I haven’t missed an episode in a long time thanks to DISH Network. The DISH Remote Access app lets me use my employee subscription to watch Dancing with the Stars live or recorded through my laptop or my smartphone. It’s great because I never have to worry about missing a show.

April 17 2011 at 3:33 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

Didn't care for Steve-o in his first incarnation but since DWTS he has grown on me and does seem to be trying so hard to recover. Yay Steve-o

April 16 2011 at 4:43 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

Love, love, looooove you, Steve-O! Keep up the good work, man.

April 16 2011 at 6:17 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

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