Washington, 57, worked with Houston on the 1996 film “The Preacher’s Wife,” and still refers to the singer who died in February as “my girl,” according to the magazine. He goes on to tell GQ that Houston had “done so well in recovery. And that is the toughest part about addiction. ...That was a monster drug that got ahold of her, it was a mean one. You can’t go back to that one. Nobody beats that."
Houston was found dead in her Beverly Hilton Hotel room on Feb. 12, 2012, the night before the Grammy Awards. Reports out of the L.A. County coroner’s office indicate that cocaine was a contributing cause to Houston's death. She was 48 at the time that she died.
The Academy Award-winning actor continues on his righteous path by telling the magazine, "I look at people -- and I don’t think I’m speaking out of line -- Sam Jackson, I’ve known for thirty-some-odd years, he was down at the bottom. And he came all the way back. And when he cleaned up, he never looked back. But he can’t have that beer, because it might lead to the tough thing."
Washington, who seldom gives exclusive interviews, also speaks with GQ on the obstacles that come with being a celebrity. Since his breakthrough role on "St. Elsewhere" 30 years ago, the “John Q” actor has managed to stay, for the most part, out of the spotlight. Few details about his personal life have been made public, which is something he is seemingly proud of accomplishing.
"Sidney Poitier told me this years ago: 'If they see you for free all week, they won’t pay to see you on the weekend, because they feel like they’ve seen you. If you walk by the magazine section in the supermarket and they’ve known you all their life, there’s no mystery. They can’t take the ride.' My professional work is being a better actor. I don’t know how to be a celebrity."
In the upcoming drama film “Flight,” directed by Robert Zemeckis and starring Washington, the father of four plays Captain William Whitaker, a pilot under investigation for an emergency landing.
The full interview with GQ can be found in the October issue of the magazine, on stands Sept. 25.