Shia LaBeouf Wrote His New Movie ‘Honey Boy’ in Rehab (Update)

Shia LaBeouf
MOSCOW, RUSSIA - JUNE 23: Shia LaBeouf poses for a photocall before global premiere of 'Transformers 3' movie on the roof of the Ritz hotel on June 23, 2011 in Moscow, Russia - Image (Denis Makarenko /

(Update: November 7, 2019) Shia LaBeouf wrote ‘Honey Boy‘ movie about his traumatic childhood.

Shia LaBeouf’s latest project, ‘Honey Boy’, is currently in theaters. On Wednesday, Shia LaBeouf appeared on ‘Jimmy Kimmel Live! And he talked about making the intense movie based on his life.

Directed by Alma Har’el and written by Shia LaBeouf, the movie centers around the actor’s childhood and early adulthood, breaking down his family relationships and the impact his family had on his mental health. LaBeouf plays a version of his father, a man who suffers from drug addiction throughout his entire life.

Kimmel calls ‘Honey Boy’ a “fantastic movie.” He asked LaBeouf, “You like it I assume?”. LaBeouf responded, “It turned out better than I hoped it would.” LaBeouf added he wrote the screenplay while in court-ordered rehab and referred to parts of the script as “dark chapters” he worked on while dealing with symptoms of PTSD.

LaBeouf says he still keeps in touch with the cop who arrested him. “He invited me to go fishing,” said the actor.

LaBeouf also touched on the fact he planned on joining the Peace Corps. LaBeouf said that he planned on doing it when he thought his acting career was over. But, after going into rehab and working through his issues, he changed his mind. “We had a little conversation about it,” LaBeouf said, “and they were very peaceful.”

Kimmel said he found parts of the movie “moving and troubling,” noting very few people know LaBeouf’s childhood. He asked the actor what his father thought of seeing LaBeouf playing him, and the actor said he originally told his dad Mel Gibson was playing the role. “I finally broke the news to him…” said the actor. 

“How did he take it when he saw the movie?” asked Kimmel. 

LeBeouf admitted he watched the movie with his father via webcam and was able to witness his father getting emotional. Kimmel agreed and said the movie made him reexamine his life as a father.

When asked about reading reviews, LaBeouf mentioned how unusual it would be to read reviews. The actor explains, “it’s not a review of a movie, it’s a review of my father.”

(Original Story: February 4, 2019)Shia LaBeouf’s latest movie, “Honey Boy”, was actually written in a rather unusual place, court-ordered rehab.

The actor wrote the script for his semi-autobiographical movie “Honey Boy” while he was being treated for substance abuse following a 2017 arrest.

“He wrote this script in rehab and actually sent me an email from there with the script,” said director Alma Har’el. “So it was pretty mind-blowing. I couldn’t say no to that.”

LaBeouf directed the film at the Sundance Film Festival in Park City, Utah. He did not speak with reporters bust posted alongside the cast and his mother Shayna Said.

LaBeouf plays an alcoholic and abusive father of a child actor, who is played at different ages by actor Noah Jupe of “A Quiet Place” and Lucas Hedges from “Boy Erased.”

“I think it was emotionally difficult for anybody to do what he did and I think nobody has ever done it before,” Har’el said. “He stepped into his own trauma and played his father in it – the most complicated relationship he’s ever had, that defined his life more than anything else.”

Shia Labeouf
BERLIN – FEB 9: Shia LaBeouf at the ‘Nymphomaniac Volume I’ premiere – 64th Berlinale International Film Festival at Berlinale Palast on February 9, 2014 in Berlin, Germany (cinemafestival /

LaBeouf said he admired an early documentary by Alma Har’el and they developed a business relationship of the years.

“We did a music video. He was kind enough to finance my second film when nobody but nobody else would,” she said.

In 2017, LaBeouf pleaded guilty to a misdemeanor charge of obstruction following an attempt to elude police following a public outburst in Georgia.

He was ordered to pay $2,680 in fines, perform 100 hours of community service, enroll in anger management counseling and complete ad rug and alcohol evaluation. That is when he began working on “Honey Boy”.

Har’el said the film focuses on LaBeouf’s private life.

Shia LaBeouf Tom Hardy
Jaguar PS /

“It’s a story about the things you inherit. Shia definitely inherited a lot of his passion towards acting from his father. But he also inherited other things that he has to deal with for the rest of his life. And he’s trying to do it as best as he can. He had to do it in the public eye, unlike many of us. So it’s been very challenging. And I think this film really kind of deals with that,” she said.

Amazon purchases the distribution rights to the movie for $5 million.