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Inspirational stars Michael J. Fox, Jeff Bridges remain hopeful amid major health crises

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Hollywood stars are looking on the brighter side as they face challenging health conditions.

Famous celebrities, including Michael J. Fox, Sam Neill, Jeff Bridges and Shannen Doherty, have momentarily stepped out of the spotlight to focus on their health, but they continue to share their tumultuous journeys and what helps them get through the unexpected events in their lives.

Here’s how these stars have offered a glimmer of hope as they battle their own personal, yet inspirational, health crises in the public eye.

MICHAEL J. FOX GETS SCARED AMID PARKINSON’S DISEASE BATTLE, BUT ‘THE ABSENCE OF FEAR IS FAITH’

michael j. fox, jeff bridges

Inspirational stars Michael J. Fox, left, and Jeff Bridges remain hopeful amid major health crises. (Getty Images)

Michael J. Fox

Michael J. Fox has given fans a glimpse inside his battle with Parkinson’s disease for more than three decades.

The “Back to the Future” star, who was diagnosed with the progressive brain disorder in 1991, admitted that he has moments of depression and uncertainty. However, Fox said he focuses on staying optimistic even during his most challenging times.

“The positivity is really sincere. I really feel it, and it’s genuine,” Fox, 62, previously told “CBS Mornings.” “But it’s hard-fought, and it’s hard-won, I should say.”

“We can find ways to just give ourselves a break, give ourselves credit for getting through life on life’s terms,” he continued. “And, in order to do that, you have to stop and say, ‘It’s not that bad. It’s not that bad.'”

“They say the absence of fear is faith.”

A split image of Michael J. Fox from "Family Ties" and from a benefit this year.

Michael J. Fox’s transformation from his “Family Ties” days to his advocacy work now. (NBC / Terry Wyatt)

In 1998, Fox publicly revealed his diagnosis for the first time. After retiring from acting, Fox dedicated himself to the Michael J. Fox Foundation, a nonprofit he co-founded in 2000 to help find a cure. The foundation has led to more than a dozen clinical trials and therapeutic programs and is a resource for those who have been previously diagnosed or are newly diagnosed.

Fox turned his negative health crisis into a positive as the Canadian native was determined to spread awareness about Parkinson’s.

“They didn’t have money. They didn’t have a voice,” Fox told the outlet. “And I thought, ‘Well, I could step in for these people and raise some hell.’”

Michael J. Fox in a blue jacket and glasses looks serious on stage

Michael J. Fox has given fans a glimpse inside his battle with Parkinson’s disease for more than three decades. (Sven Hoppe/picture alliance via Getty Images)

Over the years, the Michael J. Fox Foundation has raised more than $2 billion for research and development of better treatments for people living with Parkinson’s. In April, an international team of researchers conducted a clinical study led by Fox’s foundation that resulted in a breakthrough in the understanding and treatment of Parkinson’s.

JEFF BRIDGES TALKS ‘THE BIG LEBOWSKI’ AND HIS TERRIFYING NEAR-DEATH EXPERIENCE

Jeff Bridges

Oscar-winning actor Jeff Bridges has candidly spoken out about his health battle.

Bridges, 73, previously revealed to AARP magazine that the tumor from his cancer has shrunk “to the size of a marble.”

He was diagnosed with non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma in 2020 while on a COVID-19 pandemic-mandated break from filming the FX series “The Old Man.”

Bridges first noticed an issue while he was working out.

“I was doing some exercises while on the ground and felt what seemed like a bone in my stomach. I thought to myself, hmm. But it didn’t hurt or anything. I asked [my wife] Sue what she thought. She said, ‘I don’t know, but you’ve got to get it checked out.'” he said.

Jeff Bridges at a podium in a tuxedo.

Jeff Bridges, 73, previously revealed that the tumor from his cancer has shrunk “to the size of a marble.” (Kevin Winter)

The “Crazy Heart” star said that because he wasn’t in pain, he was reluctant to see a doctor.

While facing another health battle with COVID-19 in 2021, the now-73-year-old actor credited his wife for standing by his side through his near-fatal experience.

Bridges said he came very close to dying due to a weakened immune system from the chemotherapy.

“For me,” Bridges told the outlet, “cancer was nothing compared to the COVID.”

The “Big Lebowski” star thanked his wife, who was also temporarily hospitalized with COVID, for helping him through his five-week hospitalization and long recovery.

“My wife, Sue, was my absolute champion,” he said.

“She really fought to keep me off a ventilator. I didn’t want to be on it, and the doctors didn’t necessarily want that. But Sue was adamant.”

Jeff Bridges and wife Sue

Jeff Bridges credited his wife, Susan, for standing by his side through his near-fatal experience. (Amy Sussman/WireImage)

SAM NEILL ASSURES FANS HE’S ‘ALIVE AND WELL’ AND IN REMISSION AFTER CANCER NEWS

Sam Neill

“Jurassic Park” star Sam Neill had an emotional moment with his fans over his battle with aggressive cancer.

In October, Neill, 76, tearfully apologized for worrying friends and fans and set the record straight on recent remarks he made about his cancer treatment.

Neill previously told Australia Today that he had been in remission for 12 months due to positive effects of a rare anti-cancer drug, but doctors had informed him that it would eventually stop working.

“I made a passing remark that the treatment I’m on, which has me in remission, will inevitably fail one day. Well, that’s what happens. It’s nothing to worry about,” Neill said in a social media video.

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“I’ll bore you all to death with lots more work and, at such time as it does fail, we’re trying something else,” Neill added. “There’s all sorts of things that are happening with cancer these days. It’s a whole new ball game.”

“So, please stop worrying,” he said while tearing up. “I’m getting a lot of messages on social media and from friends. I’m sorry to worry everybody. It’s all good, it’s all fine. It’s a beautiful day. I’m off to work and look how gorgeous those geraniums are in the background.”

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Earlier this year, Neill revealed he had been diagnosed with stage 3 blood cancer in March 2022. Back then, he called the illness “ferocious,” and in a recent interview he admitted that while he’s not sure exactly how much time he has left, he’s not scared of dying.

A photo of Sam Neill

“Jurassic Park” star Sam Neill had an emotional moment with his fans over his battle with aggressive cancer. (Manuel Romano/NurPhoto)

While he spoke to the television program “Australian Story,” Neill detailed his diagnosis of angioimmunoblastic T-cell lymphoma, saying he was in “a fight for my life.” He underwent a few months of “brutal” chemotherapy, something he said stripped him of “any kind of dignity.”

His doctor, Orly Lavee, appeared on the show to explain that before he was even done with the first round of chemo, the cancer proved to be resistant to the treatment and became even more aggressive. She said many patients choose to stop treatments if this happens, but Neill was “quite keen” on keeping up the fight.

SHANNEN DOHERTY ‘DOING OK’ AFTER REVEALING CANCER HAS SPREAD TO BRAIN; CELEBRITY FRIENDS SHOW SUPPORT

Shannen Doherty

“Beverly Hills, 90210” star Shannen Doherty has remained positive in her fight with cancer. 

Doherty, 52, has shown no signs of slowing down as she spoke out about her cancer battle during public events. 

During a panel at ‘90s Con in September, the “Charmed” actress became emotional, telling the crowd, “Thank you so much,” according to People magazine. “You guys know how much I love crying constantly. And I do, it seems. So, thank you.”

Shannen Doherty tears up at '90s con

During a celebrity panel, “Charmed” actress Shannen Doherty emotionally opened up about her cancer battle. (Adrian Ruiz)

The actress went on to give an update on her health as she battles stage 4 breast cancer: “I have a fight for my life that I deal with every day. I think I am really great.”

She revealed that her breast cancer was back and had spread to her brain with a post on social media in June. Doherty’s doctors found metastases, which she called mets, on her brain on Jan. 5, and the actress began radiation on Jan. 12.

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Shannen Doherty in a black sweater takes a selfie split Shannen Doherty with a head scarf sits next to Sarah Michelle Gellar at an event

Shannen Doherty is the definition of “a warrior,” according to friend Sarah Michelle Gellar. The “90210” star is battling cancer. (Shannen Doherty Instagram/Getty Images)

Doherty has shown resilience throughout her health battle, especially with the help of fans, celebrity friends and co-stars, including Sarah Michelle Gellar.

Her longtime friend, Gellar, outlined exactly why Doherty embodies “a warrior.”

“She’s incredible. … When they say a warrior, she is a warrior,” Gellar previously told “Access Hollywood.”

“And she lives every day, and she’s fighting.”

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Fox News Digital’s Ashley Hume contributed to this report.




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