Actor Sam Neill was diagnosed last March with stage three cancer while promoting “Jurassic World Dominion.”
Neill, 75, revealed that he was diagnosed with non-Hodgkin lymphoma last year, and that after treatment, he is now in remission, according to the Today Show.
Neill revealed to the BBC that he still has to undergo chemotherapy treatments but his tumors are gone.
Neill said he first noticed he had “lumpy glands in his neck,” according to the BBC. When doctors gave him the news about what was wrong, he decided to turn to writing.
“I just wish the headline wasn’t ‘that thing’ so much, because the main thing is that I have written this book, it’s called “Did I Ever Tell You This?”, and it does mention cancer, because that’s the sort of context in which I wrote it. But I didn’t really mean to write a book. I needed something to do while I was undergoing treatment, and I am used to going to work, and I suddenly couldn’t go to work,” Neill said on Instagram.
Neill said that writing the book gave him purpose, the Today Show said.
“I didn’t think I had a book in me, I just thought I’d write some stories. And I found it increasingly engrossing,” Neill said, according to the BBC. “A year later, not only have I written the book - I didn’t have a ghostwriter - but it’s come out in record time.”
Non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma develops in the lymphatic system, according to the BBC. It’s a less common form of cancer. The National Cancer Institute said on its website that when non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma reaches stage three, that the cancer is found in “groups of lymph nodes both above and below the diaphragm” or “in lymph nodes above the diaphragm and in the spleen,” according to the Today Show.
Neill said his book isn’t about cancer but about his career and life, the BBC said.
Neill has been in over 70 movies with actors including Meryl Street, Cate Blanchett, and Jeff Goldblum. According to the BBC, Neill auditioned for the role of James Bond in the 80s because his agent had pushed him to but he didn’t really want the role.
“And my news seems to be all over the news at the moment, and it’s sort of ‘Cancer! Cancer! Cancer !’ Which is slightly tiresome because as you see, I am alive and well and I have been in remission for eight months, which feels really good. And I’m alive and kicking and I’m going to work,” Neill said on Instagram.
Neill’s first-time book, “Did I Ever Tell You This?” is expected to be released on Tuesday, according to People Magazine.