Oscar-nominated actor Woody Harrelson said he and Vice President Mike Pence palled around some at Hanover College in the 1980s but would probably not be friends today due to Pence’s Christianity, because he has “that kind of fervor that you really don’t want.”
Harrelson told late-night host Jimmy Kimmel he had been quite religious when he was younger but decided to put his faith on hold so he could live his 20s and 30s in “extreme hedonism,” whereas Pence is “still quite religious and just a whole different brand of religious.”
“We were both very religious,” Harrelson said. “It was a Presbyterian college at the time, and I was there on a Presbyterian scholarship.”
“So, you know, seeing as how I’m not quite in that ballpark now, I don’t know how we’d get along, ‘cause I think he’s still quite religious,” Harrelson said, with a knowing wink to the audience. “Just a whole different brand of religious, that kind of fervor that you really don’t want.”
Recalling his college dealings with Pence, who was two years ahead of him in school, Harrelson said, “I actually quite liked him.”
The actor said he “thought he was a pretty good guy” who was “very religious” and “very committed.”
Pence, Harrelson said, “was involved with the, you know, church activities.”
The True Detective star said at the time he “was actually considering being a minister and then I just kind of went a different way.”
Later Harrelson also explained how his theology studies contributed to the loss of his Christian faith, which coincided with a desire for a more hedonistic lifestyle.
“It was good for me at the time that I started to shift off. I had studied theology and I started to see how manmade the Bible was,” he said. “I started to say, ‘I can put this whole thing on hold for a while… Let’s just put this whole idea on hold so that I can have a 20s and 30s of extreme hedonism.’”
Last year, Woody Harrelson revealed that after 30 years of marijuana advocacy, he had sworn off pot.
“I am a party animal,” the Oscar nominee said. “But on the other hand, I haven’t… I’m now extremely moderate, and… I actually stopped smoking pot almost a year ago.”
Harrelson told Kimmel that he believes in God once again now—after reading Autobiography of a Yogi by Paramahansa Yogananda—but not the Christian God.
Pence graduated from Hanover College in 1981, while Harrelson was of the class of 1983. Both men are listed on the college’s notable alumni webpage.
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