Jurassic Park star Sam Neill has revealed he is receiving treatment for stage three blood cancer.
The actor, who played Dr Alan Grant in both the 1993 original film and legacy sequel Jurassic World Dominion, spoke with The Guardian to promote his memoir, Did I Ever Tell You This?
In the book, Neill revealed he was diagnosed with angioimmunoblastic T-cell lymphoma after suffering from swollen glands during publicity for the latest film in the franchise, but is now cancer-free after undergoing chemotherapy.
“I can’t pretend that the last year hasn’t had its dark moments,” he said of his experience. “But those dark moments throw the light into sharp relief, you know, and have made me grateful for every day and immensely grateful for all my friends. Just pleased to be alive.
“I never had any intention to write a book. But as I went on and kept writing, I realised it was actually sort of giving me a reason to live,” he continued. “I would go to bed thinking ‘I’ll write about that tomorrow… that will entertain me.’ And so it was a lifesaver really, because I couldn’t have gone through that with nothing to do.”
Neill revealed further that he switched chemotherapy treatments in order to be closer to his family in New Zealand, with the new drug being one he has to take every month.
“I’ve never felt so well or happy in my life, it was fabulous to be able to taste everything,” he said of the most recent Christmas. “The wine was glorious and the food was superb. I swam every day down in my dam, and it was the most marvellous time… I had my family and all the grandchildren. It was just fantastic.”
As well as Jurassic Park Dominion, Neill had a cameo in Marvel’s Thor: Love and Thunder last year; his upcoming projects this year include Assassin Club and Scarygirl.
If you would like more information or support about living with cancer or treatment, please click here for guidance from MacMillan Cancer Support, or click here to learn more from Stand Up to Cancer.