"Without any self-aggrandizing, the myth had shown itself to be fallacy," the 37-year-old stud tells the Irish Times in a new interview in which he opens up about the consequences following what Farrell calls his lost years.
"That chapter was pretty much a seven-year block—from going over to America in 2000 to the Miami Vice movie in 2006—and it came crashing down like a house of cards," he says. "It doesn't make a noise but you can see the structure is gone."
After a string of bad behavior which earned him a less-than-favorable reputation in Tinseltown, the Irish stud decided to clean up his act, entering rehab once he wrapped Miami Vice.
At the time, he admits he was unaware of his poor standing—"I was never screaming at people or trashing rooms," he says—and is forever grateful for his chance to redeem himself.
"I'm glad to say I have a bit of goodwill in Hollywood; it might seem a contradiction but it actually exists," he admits. "It's the same in Ireland and other parts of the world: blood beats throughout hearts and people experience stuff like hope and faith and gestures of kindness."
"I know that people rooted for me during those wild years, and that was lovely to discover after the fact," he added.
The father of two then rediscovered his passion for acting, which he says "got diluted or a little bit toxic due to the amount of success and fame that came my way," and has since found immense success in Hollywood.
"After Miami Vice some big films went away from me," he says. "But that was kind of okay because I had other work lined up that provided an opportunity for me to go back to the more simplistic elements of what I was trying to do which were the elements I fell in love with."