Mariel Hemingway, author Ernest Hemingway's actress granddaughter who got her start in Woody Allen's "Manhattan" when she was just 16, is opening up in a new documentary about what it's like to be a member of a family so notoriously plagued by suicide and death.
Hemingway, 51, puts her family secrets on display in "Running From Crazy," an autobiographical documentary set to air on Oprah Winfrey's OWN in early 2014.
"I really think the heritage of being a Hemingway, it's a big name," Hemingway told Winfrey last month in an interview to promote the film
. "It carries a lot of weight. And I think with that comes tremendous creativity, love, fame, whatever — but also with that comes the opposite. Because I think with darkness there is light. And so that darkness is that mental illness, that mental instability, that insecurity."
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Seven members of the Hemingway family have committed suicide, she says in the film — her paternal grandfather Ernest; Ernest's father Clarence; her great-grandfather on her grandmother's side; her great-uncle Leicester; her great-aunt Ursula; her uncle Gregory; and her sister Margaux, a one-time supermodel who overdosed in 1996.
Her oldest sister, Muffet, suffered a series of psychotic breaks and remains under psychiatric care, according to CBS News.
Mariel Hemingway said growing up she also worried that she'd suddenly wake up crazy.
"You know what? I can honestly tell you for the first time in my life, the last four years, I do not think that some secret, dark night's gonna come and, like, pounce on me, which I used to," she told CBS News. For many, many years I thought, it's my turn."
Hemingway credits her new boyfriend Bobby Williams with teaching her "how to laugh" again.
"There's that quote that it's never too late to have a happy childhood," she said. "It's really true. If you want to, you can recreate a life that is right for you. And that's what I've done."
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