Sam Neill has revealed he is being treated for stage three blood cancer.
The Jurassic Park star revealed the news in his forthcoming memoir, Did I Ever Tell You This, where he writes in the first chapter that he is “possibly dying.”
In an interview with The protector, the 75-year-old actor said: “The thing is, I’m a crook. Possibly dying.’
He added, “Maybe I should speed this up. I found myself with nothing to do.
“And I’m used to working. I like working. I like going to work. I love being with people every day and enjoying human company and friendship and all these things. And suddenly I was robbed of that. And I thought, ‘What am I going to do?’
Neill also told the BBC that he had a “savage type of aggressive” non-Hodgkin lymphoma.
He began writing his memoirs as a distraction and to “give me a reason to get through the day.”
Jurassic Park star Sam Neill, 75, reveals he’s being treated for stage three blood cancer in new book: ‘I’m crook, might die’
The book will look back at the New Zealand actor’s 50-year career on screen, as well as his sudden illness.
Neill revealed he sought medical attention after noticing he had lumpy glands in his neck last year while on a publicity tour for the movie Jurassic World Dominion.
The Piano star remained calm when doctors told him about his diagnosis, and he immediately began making plans to write a book about his life.
“I thought I had to do something, and I thought, ‘Shall I start writing?’ he told the BBC.
“I didn’t think I had a book in me, I just thought I’d write some stories. And I found it more and more fascinating.
“A year later, not only did I write the book – I didn’t have a ghostwriter – but it came out in record time,” he said proudly.
And about the literary endeavor, he also said that he “never had any intention of writing a book.”
Sam explained, “But as I went ahead and kept writing, I realized it actually gave me a reason to live and I went to bed thinking, ‘I’ll write about that tomorrow… that’ll entertain me.’
“And so it was really a lifesaver because I couldn’t have gone through that without doing nothing, you know.”
Disaster struck: Neill revealed he was seeking medical attention after noticing on a publicity tour last year that he had lumpy glands in his neck; Pictured in 2019
Sam’s specific condition was diagnosed as angioimmunoblastic T-cell lymphoma.
He is now in remission, but will receive chemotherapy medication for the rest of his life.
According to Lymphoma.org AITL is “a rare, often but not always aggressive form of peripheral T-cell lymphoma (PTCL).”
Statistically, this particular type of blood cancer makes up only one to two percent of all NHL cases in the United States.
The site also notes that older patients are more likely to be diagnosed.
Symptoms may include high fever, night sweats, skin rashes, and autoimmune disorders.
Reflecting on life, the seasoned actor admitted: “I’m not afraid to die. But it would annoy me. Because I would really like another decade or two, you know?
“We’ve built all these beautiful terraces, we’ve got these olive trees and cypresses, and I want to be there to see it all grow up. And I have my sweet little grandchildren. I want to see them grow up.
‘But as for the dying? I could not care less.’
The star was married to Japanese makeup artist Noriko Watanabe from 1989 to 2017 and they share two children: Elena, 32, and Tim, 40.
Flashback: Sam, Joseph Mazzello and Ariana Richards in the original 1993 Jurassic Park
Born in Ireland and later moving to New Zealand, Sam first appeared in 1975’s Landfall.
He next starred in 1979’s My Brilliant Career, based on the Miles Franklin novel.
Neill’s international breakthrough was in Andrzej Zulawski’s 1981 surreal film about divorce, Possession.
The actor told The independent that Zulawski was “a genius, but crazy.” He asked so much more of you than you could ever give. He asked much more than a director should.’
Sam’s most notable role is Dr. Alan Grant, who he most recently played in the Jurassic World franchise in last year’s third installment.
Longtime costar: Sam and costar Laura Dern pictured in a still from last year’s Jurassic Park: Dominion