I was hopeful that February would be less of a nightmare than January, but it’s not off to a good start. On Tuesday morning, Shannen Doherty, the beloved star of Beverly Hills, 90210 and Charmed, announced that her cancer has returned, and this time it’s stage 4. In an interview with Good Morning America, she opened up about the diagnosis she received a year ago, and why she’s choosing to go public with it now.
Shannon publicly fought breast cancer from 2015 to 2017, before announcing she was in remission. While she was public about her cancer diagnosis the first time, she wanted to handle this time differently. In the interview with GMA, Shannen says that she didn’t want to share her diagnosis, and initially she never planned to. She kept quiet about it even while she was filming last year’s BH90210 reboot, only sharing her health struggles with Brian Austin Green. She says that being open with Brian helped her make it through the filming process, and also helped her to deal with her grief for her late costar Luke Perry.
While she wished to stay private this time, sadly her hand was forced because of a separate legal issue she’s dealing with. As if the cancer wasn’t hard enough, Doherty is locked in a legal battle with State Farm over damages to her home in the 2018 California wildfires. While she believes she is owed much more than what she received, State Farm claims that she “failed to take adequate steps to mitigate the damages claimed, if any.” They say that they’ve paid her over a million dollars already, but she’s sued them for additional damages. The case is now set to go to trial, and it was made clear that details of her health would soon be made public in court documents.
Regardless of the details in the legal case, it’s really f*cked up that Shannen Doherty didn’t have a choice to deal with this struggle in the private way that she wanted. I’m no legal expert, but I don’t see how a court case about her house is directly connected with her cancer diagnosis. While State Farm put out a statement saying they “empathize with Ms. Doherty’s health issues,” it seems like the actual empathetic thing to do would’ve been to figure out a solution that didn’t involve sharing her private information with the world.
In the GMA interview, Shannen makes it clear that the court documents are the only reason she’s speaking out now, saying “I want it to be real and authentic, and I want to control the narrative. I want people to know from me.” I’m glad she’s taking control of the story surrounding her health, though I wish this was a story we never ended up hearing. Stage 4 cancer is no joke, and if Shannen wants privacy during this time, she should have it. Shannen Doherty has a tough fight ahead of her, but hopefully she can keep her head up and make it through this.
Images: Kathy Hutchins/Shutterstock
It’s a sad day for Riverdale and 90210 fans, as news broke that Luke Perry passed away at age 52. Perry had suffered a massive stroke last Wednesday in his home in Sherman Oaks, California. TMZ reported that when paramedics arrived at Perry’s home after his stroke, he was responsive and talking, but his condition deteriorated. Unfortunately, he never recovered and passed away on Monday.
Perry first became a household name as an actor in the 90s, when he played Dylan McKay on Beverly Hills, 90210. He played McKay from 1990-1995, and then again from 1998-2000. More recently, he was known for playing Archie Andrews’ dad, Fred, on The CW show Riverdale. Riverdale executives told TMZ, “Luke was everything you would hope he would be: an incredibly caring, consummate professional with a giant heart, and a true friend to all. A father figure and mentor to the show’s young cast, Luke was incredibly generous, and he infused the set with love and kindness. Our thoughts are with Luke’s family during this most difficult time.”
At press time, the Riverdale Twitter had yet to release any statement about Perry’s death, as had KJ Apa (who plays Perry’s son on Riverdale), Cole Sprouse, Camila Mendes, and Lili Reinhart. However, the Riverdale writers room Twitter account posted a touching tribute to Perry.
Luke Perry… you were a joyful and vibrant soul. You will be missed but most certainly your legacy will be remembered forever. Rest in love and peace, friend. #Riverdale
— Riverdale Writers Room (@RiverdaleWriter) March 4, 2019
Molly Ringwald, who plays Perry’s estranged wife on the show, tweeted, “My heart is broken. I will miss you so much Luke Perry. Sending all my love to your family.
My heart is broken. I will miss you so much Luke Perry. Sending all my love to your family. ❤️ #LukePerry
— Molly Ringwald (@MollyRingwald) March 4, 2019
When the initial news of Perry’s stroke broke, Shannon Doherty, one of Perry’s 90210 costars, posted a picture of the two of them on Instagram, writing in the caption, “My friend. Holding you tight and giving you my strength. You got this.”
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My friend. Holding you tight and giving you my strength. You got this.
Just days ago, it was announced that Beverly Hills, 90210 was slated for a six-episode revival, with Jennie Garth, Jason Priestley, Tori Spelling, Ian Ziering, Brian Austin Green, and Gabrielle Carteris confirmed to play their original characters. Shannon Doherty and Luke Perry were not attached to the revival at the time, but it was reported that Fox was keeping the door open for either to appear on the show.
Perry’s rep told TMZ that the actor was surrounded by family and close friends at the time of his death, including his children, fiancée, ex-wife, mother, step-father, brother, and sister.
Images: Shutterstock; theshando / Instagram, riverdalewriter, mollyringwald / Twitter