The actor of True Grit and The Big Lebowski tells how he had to fight head-on against the virus and against lymphoma.
“I was dancing with my own death.” In an interview with American media People, Jeff Bridges explained that he came very close to death after contracting covid while undergoing chemotherapy. In October 2020, doctors discovered in the Oscar-winning actor for his role in crazyheart in 2010 a very large lymphoma of several centimeters. “Like a child in my body”he explains today.
At the time, the actor is optimistic. “Although it is a serious illness, I consider myself lucky to have a great medical team and the prognosis is good,” he says. He then began chemotherapy by infusion before moving on to oral chemotherapy. The treatment is effective since the tumor quickly resorbs. But in January 2021, the hero of The Big Lebowski of the Coen brothers is infected with the coronavirus. His immune defenses weakened by his chemotherapy, the actor suffered the full brunt of the symptoms of covid. “I had no means of defence. That’s what chemo does – it strips your entire immune system. I had nothing to fight the virushe says. Faced with covid, my cancer no longer looked like anything”.
“I was ready to go”
People relates that Jeff Bridges then spent five long months in the hospital, uncertain of the outcome of the disease. He suffers in particular from a lack of oxygenation which forces him to live on a respirator and cannot even turn over in bed without the help of a nurse. Despite the encouragement of doctors, he says, the actor stops hoping and fighting. “I was in surrender mode, testifies Jeff Bridges. I was ready to leave. I was dancing with my own death.»
After weeks of treatment, Jeff Bridges is gradually regaining all of his means since last fall. The 72-year-old actor, in remission, is currently in a promotional campaign for the series The Old Man broadcast on the American platform Hulu from June 16. He holds the title role. Filming had been interrupted due to his convalescence and was able to resume in February.