Val Kilmer Shares An Update About His Battle With Throat Cancer
Oct 25th, 2021
In 2017, the world was saddened after Val Kilmer announced that he was diagnosed with cancer. He knew that something was wrong when he discovered a lump on his throat and when he woke up in a pool of blood. During the course of his treatments, he took to Facebook to clarify that his diagnosis was a “complicated” form of throat cancer.
He battled throat cancer in 2013 after being misdiagnosed by the doctors who found a tumor on his lungs instead of his vocal cords. Because of this, he lost 40 pounds within the year. He couldn’t eat due to having trouble swallowing.
The Batman Forever star has been updating his fans about his progress. And in a new interview with The Ross Baker Experience, Kilmer opened up about recovering from the disease. But sadly, he lost his voice in the process.
The actor said, “I’ve had a lot of support. My friends have been wonderful and my wife has been beyond belief supportive.”
However, he still struggles with losing his voice. We all know that Batman is very well known for his deep, musculin, and mysterious voice. After the treatment, he is is better thanks to chemotherapy, radiation, and tracheostomy.
The tracheostomy has left a hole in Kilmer’s throat which is why he often covers it with a scarf or handkerchief. He shared, “I can’t speak without plugging this hole. You have to make the choice to breathe or to eat. It’s an obstacle that is very present with whoever sees me.”
This change is a challenge but it isn’t holding him back from working or expressing himself creatively. In fact, just last year, he had a leading role in the film “Paydirt.” He will also appear in the upcoming “Top Gun: Maverick.” He said, “I obviously am sounding much worse than I feel,” he explained.
He said, “I wish I could talk more normally. And I don’t know what to say about it other than that I understand my voice is not what it was and I’m perfectly happy with it, but I’d like to sound like myself.”
Earlier this year, the software company “Sonantic” helped the actor recreate his voice using old recordings and AI technology. He debuted the artificially created sound in a one-minute clip, expressing profound gratitude.
In the clip, Kilmer said: “After getting treated, my voice as I knew it was taken away from me. People around me struggle to understand when I’m talking,” he said through the AI voice. “But despite all that I still feel I’m the exact same person. Still the same creative soul.
A soul that dreams ideas and stories confidently, but now I can express myself again, bring these ideas to you, and show you this part of myself once more. A part that was never truly gone. Just hiding away. ”
In his new documentary called “Val,” he said, “Now that it’s more difficult to speak, I want to tell my story more than ever. ” This documents his life up until filming, including a backlog of home videos from the last 40 years. The documentary also focuses on the many hurdles that he’s overcome, including his battle with throat cancer.
Also, it is narrated in Kilmer’s words but is read by Jack, his 26-year-old son.