The 'Wall Street: Money Never Sleeps' star has revealed how he befriended the Hollywood veteran - who recently reunited with his daughter Angelina Jolie after they were estranged for several years - when they were both at low points in their personal lives.
Shia - who suffered a badly damaged hand following a car crash last year - said: "We did a couple of movies together and for a long time we were filling each other's voids. He would never say that, but he had no family, I had no family.
"We were just two lonely dudes that met each other and became friends. The first face I saw when I came out of the emergency room after my car crash was Jon Voight's before my own father's."
Although Shia - who starred in 'Transformers' and 'Holes' with John - hasn't had an easy relationship with his dad, who has battled drug addiction, he admits his desire to succeed stems from wanting to please his parent.
He explained to Glamour magazine: "My father is the sweetest man in the world and the scariest dude all at the same time. Nobody affects me to the magnitude that he does, emotionally. He's got the power to ruin me because my whole life has become about trying to please him, because he wasn't around much for me."
Fortunately for Shia, his mother was a much more positive influence on him.
He said: "She's a rock. She's cement. She's a f***ing angel. She walks on clouds."