Hollywood star reveals battle with cancer after denying illness to press

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Val Kilmer

During a Reddit Ask Me Anything session, Val Kilmer wrote, ” I did have a healing of cancer,” confirming rumors that he was battling the disease.

The 57-year-old Top Gun star made the statement when answering a fan’s inquiry.

“A while ago, Michael Douglas claimed you had terminal cancer. What was the story behind that?” asked the fan.

Kilmer responded:

“He was probably trying to help me because the press probably asked where I was these days, and I did have a healing of cancer, but my tongue is still swollen — although healing all the time. Because I don’t sound my normal self yet people think I may still be under the weather.”

Kilmer is referencing a statement Michael Douglas made in October, 2016 during an interview with Jonathan Ross. “Val was a wonderful guy who is dealing with exactly what I had, and things don’t look to good for him,” Douglas, who famously battled throat cancer, said. “My prayers are with him. That’s why you haven’t heard too much from Val lately.”

On November 1, Kilmer took to Facebook to address the claim.

I love Michael Douglas but he is misinformed. The last time I spoke to him was almost two years ago, when I asked him for a referral for a specialist to get a diagnosis for a lump in my throat, which prevented me from continuing a tour of my play CITIZEN TWAIN. I ended up using a team at UCLA and have no cancer whatsoever. I still have a swollen tongue and am rehabbing steadily.

Kilmer said he’s been busy making 3 films.  He challenged fans who thought he was lying to, “Come see me live and happy and in person in Westwood next week.”

He didn’t seem upset with Douglas, 72, who co-stared with him in Ghost and the Darkness. “Whatever led Michael Douglas to speculate about my health, he’s a loving and devoted friend to a privileged group of talent people around the world, and I’m sure he meant no harm.”

Later, on a November 15 Facebook post, Kilmer said Douglas “wrote me a nice note apologizing for suggesting to the press overseas, I ‘wasn’t doing too well…’ and was grateful to hear I am doing well. He’s a classy guy.”

The admission of cancer on Reddit might explain why, while presenting the film version of his one-man play Citizen Twain in Los Angeles that month, Kilmer seemed to be struggling to speak and slurring his words.


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