Academy Award-winning actor-producer Michael Douglas reportedly says actor Val Kilmer is seriously ill.
In reports ultimately originating with the U.K. tabloid The Sun and picked up by other news outlets, Douglas, 72, told TV-radio host Jonathan Ross during a Q&A at London’s Royal Theatre, Drury Lane, that Douglas’ “The Ghost and the Darkness” co-star Kilmer “was a wonderful guy who is dealing with exactly what I had, and things don’t look too good for him. My prayers are with him. That’s why you haven’t heard too much from Val lately.”
In August 2010, Douglas began radiation and chemotherapy treatment for what he said was a tumor in his throat. He announced that January he had recovered and was healthy, and admitted in October 2013 that for professional reasons he had lied and that he had actually had potentially disfiguring tongue cancer.
Despite Douglas’ comment about Kilmer being out of the public eye, the 56-year-old actor has completed work in three films scheduled for release next year, posts regularly to Facebook, appeared in a music video this month that was covered by Rolling Stone magazine and last month appeared with Robert De Niro, Al Pacino and filmmaker Michael Mann on a panel about their 1995 film “Heat.”
Nonetheless, Kilmer has been dogged by speculation about his health. Following a Jan. 30, 2015, report that the actor had been hospitalized, his representative told TMZ.com that Kilmer was undergoing tests for a possible tumor. The next day, Kilmer posted on Facebook, “Thank you for all your sweet support. But I have not had a tumor, or a tumor operation, or any operation. I had a complication where the best way to receive care was to stay under the watchful eye of the UCLA ICU. Friends have assisted who know my spiritual convictions and have been most sensitive and kind for the extra effort in making sure there’s minimum gossip and silly talk.”
In October 2015, Kilmer again went on Facebook to dispel “a rumor I’m unwell again and in hospital which is totally untrue. I was in to verify I have no tumor or infection of any kind which was verified by the very caring experts at UCLA.” While he was photographed in December, after months of wearing scarves and other throat coverings in public, with an apparent tracheotomy tube, Kilmer began appearing without it in February.
Kilmer’s representative did not respond to a Newsday request for comment.