Michael Douglas tells of 'resurgence' after cancer battle
Published 04/12/2015 | 03:01
Actor Michael Douglas has said surviving his cancer scare has given him new energy as he settles into his later years.
An emotional Douglas, 71, spoke about his health at a lunch for US over-50s organisation AARP to celebrate the Academy Award-winner's career, telling members: "It's good to be alive."
Douglas, who battled stage-four throat cancer in 2010, told the audience at New York's Le Bernardin restaurant : "Once you come out of that end you have a resurgence, certainly of energy."
And Douglas had his own celebrity cheering section as he was given AARP's Movies For Adults Lifetime Achievement Award.
Besides his wife, fellow Oscar-winner Catherine Zeta-Jones, his Ant-Man co-star Paul Rudd, Fatal Attraction co-star Glen Close, as well as Blythe Danner, David Hyde Pierce, Zac Posen and Jann Wenner attended.
Close joked: "I love Michael so much that I stopped colouring my hair so I can look like him."
Douglas called One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest, which he produced, his most profound work, and noted that it was turned down at every Hollywood studio before its eventual release. He also attributed his longevity to picking the best film to work on instead of the best role.
"The greatest compliment I could get is that I see your name, and I don't know what I'm gonna get but it's going to be good," he said.
His voice cracked when he thanked his wife for her support; the couple separated a couple of years ago but reconciled, and Douglas noted the pair were celebrating their 15th anniversary this year.
He also got political, railing against super PACs - independent political committees that give large contributions to political candidates, blaming them for viciousness in the presidential campaign climate.
He also cited Wednesday's mass shooting in San Bernadino, California, in asking for people of different political beliefs to unite on a common gun control solution, so "we cannot be completely embarrassed" before the rest of the world.
Douglas will officially receive AARP's award at a ceremony in Los Angeles in February.