Jeff Bridges has revealed that everything in life became ‘hyper-precious’ to him amid his recent health struggles.
The 72-year-old was diagnosed with cancer of the lymphatic system in 2020 and was also hit hard by COVID-19 which he previously admitted left him at ‘death’s door’.
However the actor now believes his two-year ‘health adventure’ has actually helped him to look at life through a new lens.
He told Sky News: ‘Not all bad – [there were] wonderful parts about being that sick that were kind of unexpected, you know, feeling all that love coming towards me from my family and friends and from other people all over the world’.
‘That was [an] unexpected, wonderful feeling, and then also the love that that kind of triggered for me.
‘I said, “Oh yeah, this is life, this is wonderful”, and everything became kind of hyper-precious during that time.’
Jeff revealed in 2021 that his tumour had shrunk, shared: ‘I got cancer and chemo and then COVID on top of that. And the chemo stripped me of my immune system so I got the COVID pretty bad.
‘I was sick for about two years and [it was] very dreamlike, you know.’
He confessed to E! News earlier this year that he was at ‘death’s door a couple of times there’.
Initially, the acclaimed actor was informed by doctors that his chemo treatments were working, but then he tested positive for COVID-19 in early 2021, which was a time before vaccines and boosters became available.
During his time in hospital, his mind raced with thoughts of whether he would ever be able to work again, or be able to walk his daughter Haley, 36, down the aisle at her wedding.
‘I remember the doctors saying to me, ‘Jeff, you gotta fight,” he recalled of a time when things were going from bad to worse. ‘I had no idea what they were talking about. I thought, ‘Man, I’m in surrender mode here.’ With a great medical team, great trainers and my family, everybody brought me back.’
The Hollywood star has now returned to filming his new TV show, The Old Man, and is ‘thrilled’ to be back on set.
He said: ‘We broke for pandemic and we were off for a few months and that’s where my health adventure began.
‘And then two years later, I went back to work and it was the most bizarre feeling – it was like we had a long weekend and I couldn’t wait to tell my buddies this dream that I had: I was sick, I was in the hospital, you know, it all felt very dreamlike.
‘But I’m back on my feet and thrilled to be here.’
The official synopsis reads: ‘Dan Chase is a former CIA operative who has been living off-the-grid in Upstate New York for thirty years. After killing an intruder who breaks into his home, Chase is forced into hiding. While in hiding, Chase rents a room from Zoe McDonald, with whom he is forced to partner while on the run’.
‘FBI Assistant Director for Counterintelligence Harold Harper is called upon to bring in Chase, because of their complicated past during the Soviet–Afghan War. Working alongside Harper are his protege, FBI agent Angela Adams, and CIA officer Raymond Waters; as well as Julian Carson, a hit-man hired by Harper to kill Chase’.
The Old Man streams on Disney+ September 28