Why Woody Harrelson Doesn’t Own a Cellphone

Woody Harrelson/Instagram

Why Woody Harrelson Doesn’t Own a Cellphone

By Movieguide® Contributor

Woody Harrelson recently sat down with Ted Danson and Kristen Bell on Danson’s new podcast to talk about the negative effects of phone use and why he doesn’t have one—he doesn’t like the attachment.

“Let me explain something about Woody,” Danson said. “He doesn’t have a phone. He’s one of those bullies in life that make other people carry his phone for him.”

“Well, I just don’t like to have, you know, to be readily available to any human being at any time,” Harrelson said. “That’s not the reason. I like to be in touch with people in a way, but I don’t like the appendage on my appendage.”

When Harrelson had a phone, he recognized how he was glued to it. He tried to set limits, but they didn’t stop the problem.

“You know, I made a thing where I’m like, ‘Okay, I’m gonna set a two-hour limit on my phone,’ because this is, I’ve given it up now three, three and a half years, but back then I was like, ‘Okay, I’m going to set this limit. Two hours.’ It’s like 9:30. You know, I’ve already hit my limit at 9:30, so I woke up, and I’ve been on it two hours already because, cuz you know how it can just keep going and going.”

The limits he set were for “texting and, well, I don’t know about apps, but texting and also, you know, whatever, so I just finally, I wanted to be able to be in a, like if I were out to dinner with you, right? And there’s just a lull in the conversation,” he said. “Oh, I’m on the phone. ‘Oh yeah. Uh-huh. Uh-huh.’ You know, and I look and I’m back down to the device and this.”

Danson told him he admires Harrelson’s desire not to have a phone.

“I need to emulate that more,” he said.

Bell’s children point out to her when she’s been on her phone too long.

“But I think once you recognize that, it reshapes, at least it did for me, my whole perspective, and I think my kids had a lot to do with that, too, where I realized they were talking to me and my kids are also very, like, emotionally articulate,” Bell said.

“So, if I’d be checking something, even if it would be the most valid thing ever, like, ‘Oh, her Jujitsu class is changing times tomorrow. I need to tell the other moms.’ Whatever. A valid thing and one of my kids would look at me and go, ‘I just feel like you’re disconnected. I don’t have your whole attention, Mom,’ and I’m like, ‘Oh ****,’” she said.

To help curb her phone use, she puts it away when her two elementary-age daughters get home from school.

“When they get home from school, I do put it down. I put it upstairs,” she said. “It’s not in my ether when we’re bopping around the house at night and I feel, I really enjoy being less connected to it. It’s such a trick.”

Harrelson caused some controversy when he wore a political baseball cap in 2023. Robert F. Kennedy Jr. said the CHEERS actor was likely unaware of the controversy because he was “off the grid.”

“I’ve texted with him. You know, he’s very hard to get a hold of. He’s been a friend for many, many years. He’s very close to me and Cheryl,’ Kennedy told Fox News last year.

“One thing is he doesn’t like cell phones. It’s conceivable that he does not know about all of the controversy,” Kennedy said.  “He doesn’t watch TV. He doesn’t have his cell phone and he’s kind of off the grid.”

Harrelson also follows a plant-based lifestyle and has been a vegan for over 30 years.

“I eat vegan, but I eat mostly raw,” he told InStyle. “If I have a cooked meal, I feel my energy drop. So when I first started shifting my diet, it wasn’t as much a moral or an ethical pursuit but an energetic pursuit.”

Movieguide® reported on Harrelson last year:

Woody Harrelson is starring alongside 10 actors with developmental disabilities in the upcoming comedy CHAMPIONS. 

CHAMPIONS follows a former minor league basketball coach (Harrelson) who has to do court-ordered community service as the coach of a Special Olympics team.  All the players on the team are acted by disabled actors, something the CHAMPIONS movie makers said was always the plan. 

“The world’s changing a lot, in a good way,” said Bobby Farrelly, one of the movie’s creators and one of the minds behind comedies like DUMB AND DUMBER and THERE’S SOMETHING ABOUT MARY.  Farrelly continued, “We’ve become aware of how hard it is for disabled actors to get parts in movies because they don’t read for parts that aren’t disabled, so when the character is disabled, it should go to a disabled actor.”


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