Robson Green turned to fishing after battling drink and drugs at the height of his '90s fame.
The Geordie actor, 56, became one of Britain's biggest stars after appearing in ITV's popular military drama Soldier Soldier and embarking on a pop career with co-star Jerome Flynn.
With more than 20 million Brits at one stage tuning in to the show, he lived the high life as one of the nation's heartthrobs - but has now admitted that his success sparked inner turmoil.
"I was enjoying fame. I was enjoying recognition, I was enjoying all the approval. I was enjoying the awards, I was enjoying the parties, I was enjoying the drinking and everything else that went with fame," he says on his new TV show Robson and Jim's Icelandic Fly-Fishing Adventure, according to Chronicle Live.
"But, and I wish this was a more original story, my relationships were a car crash. And I was losing touch with what mattered in life."
Explaining how his dad prompted him to get help, he adds: "I grew up in a close-knit mining community in the north-east of England where my dad worked down the pit. I started having real problems with fame and alcohol and drugs.
"Dad turned up, he'd worked hard all his life and he looks at his son who he has given everything to - blood, sweat and tears - and he goes 'Are you happy?', and I went 'Yeah,' but deep down I knew I wasn't and I realised I didn't have anything. Because all I was doing in my life was acting."
He went to see a therapist who suggested he embrace fishing, a hobby he had neglected after finding fame - and the outdoor sport helped him resolve his issues.
"Getting back into fishing was a turning point for me. It has been and still is my road to Damascus. If I had the chance to go to that therapist again, I would say go fishing with me and you will see that's who Robson Green is.
"I needed something in life that made sense and, for me, fishing makes sense. I've learnt so much from fishing and found an inner peace that was missing."
Robson and Jim's Icelandic Fly-Fishing Adventure continues on ITV4 on Tuesday.