Sam Neill, an actor, has admitted to having non-Hodgkin lymphoma of “a fierce type of aggressive” nature.
The 75-year-old Jurassic Park star believed she was going to die when she received her Stage 3 cancer diagnosis in March 2022.
He began writing because he was unable to work and because it “gave me a reason to get through the day,” he tells the BBC.
He talks about his sickness and his nearly 50-year career in film in his most recent memoir, Did I Ever Told You This?
When Neill was on a promotional tour for Jurassic World Dominion last year, he first became aware of the swollen glands in his neck.
He claimed that although his response to the diagnosis from the doctors was “quite phlegmatic,” it forced him to “take stock of things.”
“I felt like I needed to do something, so should I start writing?” he asks.
“I just assumed I’d write some stories; I didn’t imagine I could write a book. And I became more and more engrossed in it.
“I wrote the book myself without using a ghost writer, and it was published in record speed a year later.
“I suspect my publishers—they’re wonderful people, but I think they wanted to get it out quickly just in case I passed away before the book could be published,” the author said.
In fact, he speculates that the book’s subtitle at one point might have been Letters from a Dying Man.
He claims that there are “black days.” During the first round of chemotherapy, he started losing his hair, and in his memoir, he describes seeing “a bald, wizened old guy there” when he looks in the mirror.
“I really want my beard to come back. I’m not at all fond of how my face appears.”
The extensive network of tubes and glands in the body known as the lymphatic system is where Non-lymphoma, Hodgkin’s a less frequent malignancy, arises.
Yet the Peaky Blinders star, who also starred in The Piano, is currently in remission and still optimistic.
I don’t fear death, he declares. “I genuinely enjoy living, so stopping would not be what I want to do.”
He goes on: “While it was a really grim adventure, I still thought of it as an adventure. Also, pleasant days are fantastic, and receiving good news is incredibly exciting.”
He makes a point of emphasizing that the book is not about cancer. “I hate reading books on cancer.”
However, the focus is primarily on what he refers to as his lengthy career and “fun” and “unlikely” life. He has collaborated with stars including Meryl Streep, Cate Blanchett, and Jeff Goldblum in more than 70 movies.
complaining about mumbling
He disagrees that movie acting has significantly altered over the years, but he does have a beef with actors who “mumble,” or fail to clearly articulate their lines.
Many young performers, in my opinion, have the idea that whispering in a way that no one else can hear is kind of seductive.
He attributes the actors’ ability to “get away with whispering and rambling since the neck microphone is going to record everything” to neck microphones.
“That is absurd. In order to be understood, we speak. Because someone hung a microphone around our necks, we don’t go around stumbling.”
“Leaving the door open”
Neill journeys “through the past and the alleyways of my existence” throughout the novel. He begins by saying it was “a pleasure,” adding slyly, “Mostly.” And occasionally, he speaks without restraint.
His co-star in The Piano, American actor Harvey Keitel, is described as “truculent and tough and a bit graceless” by the actor.
Additionally, it is obvious that Neill and Australian actress Judy Davis are still very much in love. He claims she is the only actress who “made it apparent I wasn’t in her level,” and they shared screen time in three movies, including My Brilliant Career.
He continues, “Well, I probably ought to have called my book Spilling the Beans since one of the beans I probably shouldn’t have spilt was meeting Barbra Streisand.
In the early 1980s, he was flown to New York to meet her in a hotel suite to talk about a part in her movie Yentl.
He claims to have always adored her but is honest and states, “I’ve never liked her singing.”
He claims that he was “in a state of astonishment and dismay” when she loudly sung two songs from the movie at a distance of roughly five feet away from him.
Neill is the person who initially rejected the role of James Bond. In spite of his better judgment, he went to the audition in the 1980s on the advice of his “aggressive” agent.
“I genuinely didn’t want to be the James Bond that nobody liked.
“I truly didn’t want that job because you had to do it for the rest of your life. I’ve never aspired to be a famous person.”
The book finishes on a happy note. Neill no longer has tumors, but he still needs to have chemotherapy.
In fact, he is set to begin production on a new movie in Australia with American Beauty actress Annette Bening. His current role is in the legal drama The Twelve on ITVX.
The last thing Neill wants is for people to become fixated on the cancer issue “because I have no actual interest in cancer.
I have very little interest in anything besides existing.
Did I tell you before? release date is March 23, by Sam Neill.