When he was just reaching the prime of his career, comedian Dane Cook experienced one of the most challenging periods of his life: both of his parents died of cancer within nine months of each other, and he found out that his half-brother, then his manager, had embezzled millions of dollars from him.
Cook stopped by HuffPost Live to chat about his bow he turned a personal tragedy into an opportunity for growth, and to discuss his new standup special "Troublemakers."
"Everything leading up to that point, especially when my folks got sick — my mom and dad had two different forms of cancer, and I lost them both within nine months to each other — everything up until then was really pretty much bliss," Cook told host Caroline Modarressy-Tehrani. "I'm living the dream and really showing them everything I hoped to accomplish."
The pain of his parents' death ultimately led to a dramatic shift in Cook's attitude.
"Even though it was turbulent in the time, coming away from it, it gave me a lot more balance in my life and a lot more appreciation for certain things," Cook said. "I've always loved standup comedy, but I was so pleased that I was doing something that I loved and could sustain me and that my fans could always see me grow and change. My fans allowed me to bring those personal things to the stage, and they were cool with it."