Funnyman Trevor Noah took a serious turn by revealing comedian Jim Carrey helped him to discover he was depressed.
“The Daily Show” host shared that Carrey’s discussion of mental illness and depression made Noah realize he was facing the same battle during a speech to accept the Comedy Person of the Year Award at the Just for Laughs Awards on Friday night.
“Jim Carrey was one of the first comedians that described the beast that many of us face in this room and that’s depression. I didn’t know what that thing was. I just thought I liked sleeping for weeks on end sometimes,” Noah said during his speech.
“Then I read your (Carrey’s) story and I was like ‘oh s–t, that’s what’s going on’ and I thank you because, you know, I found a way to fight it.”
Trevor Noah discusses tragic day his stepfather shot his mother
The 33-year-old turned to comedy to fight his demons and referred to the comedy greats in the room as his community.
Noah, a South African native, was born to a black mother and white father during the country’s period of apartheid. His mother was jailed for the relationship and his father eventually moved back to Switzerland.
His mother later remarried and then divorced her second husband, Ngisaveni Abel Shingange, who was abusive toward her and Noah. When she became engaged again after the split, Shingange attempted to kill her by shooting her in the leg and head before the gun jammed. Noah’s mother survived the attack and when he also became threatened by the ex, he moved to Los Angeles.
Carrey, who was also in attendance at the ceremony as the recipient of the Generation Award, has been open with his battle with depression for years. He went public with the news in 2004 on “60 Minutes” and shared that he was on Prozac for years.
Jim Carrey trial over girlfriend’s death set for next year
The “Eternal Sunshine of a Spotless Mind” star recently lost his ex-girlfriend Cathriona White to suicide. White’s family filed a wrongful death lawsuit against Carrey after the family claimed the actor was responsible for obtaining the drugs the 30-year-old used to take her own life.
He is set to face trial in the suit in 2018.
Other award-winners included, Mike Birbiglia for stand-up comedian of the year, Ali Wong for breakout comedy star of the year, Kenya Barris for comedy writer of the year and Craig Ferguson in an alumni tribute.
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