Gerard Butler has opened up about the ordeal of being pulled under the waves after a surfing trip went badly wrong last December. Butler stars in ‘Chasing Maverick’ as real-life surfer Jay Moriaty, who in 1994 as a 16 year-old drew notoriety and acclaim from the surfing fraternity in 1994 after being wiped out by a 30-foot wave only to continue surfing almost instantly.

Butler though faced his own wipeout moment last year when filming and didn’t handle it quite as well, nearly drowning. Talking to USA Today, the Scottish actor said that underwater "all of those things were going around my head, going 'This is it. If I panic now…" Things got even worse as a second wave hit him and he found himself submerged again. “I felt very present” he reflected. “There was something that felt very normal about it. But by the time I got to the point I got to thinking, 'I'm in big trouble now,' that was only a about a quarter of the way through it. It went on and on and on. And then I started thinking, I just wanted to scream. And I was so deep underwater. I wanted to scream 'Help, somebody!' Or 'Mom!' Or something. And yet I knew the second I did that I was done."

Thankfully a crew member was nearby and Butler managed to grab onto his hand and was pulled out of the water. It was a near scare that only gave the Hollywood A-lister an increased respect for the surfer he portrays in ‘Chasing Maverick’, out this Friday.