British actor Gary Oldman, starring as a washed-up alcoholic writer in the new Cannes film Parthenope, announced on Wednesday that he has been sober for 27 years. The Oscar winner (Darkest Hour) also addressed the controversial remarks he recently made about his role in the Harry Potter films, which upset some fans of the boy wizard. Oldman shared these comments during a press conference at the Cannes Film Festival after the premiere of Paolo Sorrentino's Parthenope.

The Italian coming-of-age drama, inspired by mythology, follows a beautiful young woman as she meanders through Naples and Capri. Oldman briefly portrays famed novelist John Cheever, who in real life battled with severe alcoholism -- a role that Oldman claimed was not much of a stretch.

Speaking about his portrayal, Oldman highlighted, "I just celebrated 27 years of sobriety," to rounds of applause. He further added, "I've been there. I know what that means. So coming to this role, there were things that I just instinctively understood."

On being asked about his recent negative comments regarding his own performance as Sirius Black in the film adaptations of J. K. Rowling's beloved Potter books, Oldman clarified that he did not intend to disparage the fans of Harry Potter and the films. He expressed regret that he had not known the character's tragic fate in later books when he first took on the role in the 2004 movie Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban.

Oldman mentioned, "Had I known from the very beginning -- if I had read the five books and I had seen the arc of the character -- I may have approached it differently. I may have looked at it differently and I may have painted in a different colour." He also acknowledged that actors are always hyper-critical of their own work, stating, "If I watched a performance of myself and thought 'My god, I'm fantastic in this,' that would be a sad day. Because my best work is next year."

Reviews of Parthenope varied from "exquisite" to "utterly vacuous", though most critics lauded Oldman's brief appearance.