Jane Fonda speaks about confronting cancer: ‘I’m not afraid to go. I’m ready’

The actress, who just turned 85, announced in September that she has been diagnosed with lymphoma, a ‘very treatable’ disease with an 80% survival rate. ‘The week that I get chemo is challenging,’ she says

Actress Jane Fonda speaks onstage during the 2022 Pennsylvania Conference for Women on October 6, 2022 in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.
Actress Jane Fonda speaks onstage during the 2022 Pennsylvania Conference for Women on October 6, 2022 in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.Marla Aufmuth (Getty)

Actress Jane Fonda has always been known as an outspoken woman. At 85 years old – it was her birthday on December 21 – she hasn’t changed. As she undergoes chemotherapy treatment to fight a “very treatable” cancer, the star of Our Souls at Night (2017) has spoken about how she is facing this difficult moment. “I’m not afraid of going. I’m ready. I’ve had a great life. It’s not that I want to go, but I’m aware that it’s going to be sooner rather than later,” the two-time Oscar winner declared in an interview with Entertainment Tonight.

“When you get to my age, you’d better be aware of how much time is behind you, which is more than ahead of you. It is simply being realistic,” reflected the actress in the same interview. The star of the Grace and Frankie series, in which she stars alongside Lily Tomlin, announced last September that she has non-Hodgkins lymphoma, a type of cancer that originates in the lymph nodes. “This is a very treatable cancer. Eighty percent of people survive, so I feel very lucky,” wrote the actress in a post on her Instagram account – which has two million followers – when she made her diagnosis public.

The actress, who became famous in the 1980s for her aerobics video classes, has just finished filming the film 80 for Brady, produced by starring football player Tom Brady. The movie – which also stars Sally Field, Rita Moreno and Lily Tomlin – will be released next February. In the Entertainment Tonight interview, she noted that exercise remains essential for her to stay in shape. “When you’re almost 85, the mantra is slow. What’s important is to keep moving, to keep yourself flexible,” said Fonda, who says she is relieved to see that she still has the strength to climb into a big car or drive.

In the interview, the daughter of the legendary actor Henry Fonda also spoke about her chemotherapy treatment, which she previously announced would last up to six months. “The week that I get chemo is challenging. You get tired. But after that it’s great. I’ve been traveling and campaigning with climate candidates,” said the actress. Her treatment for non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma has not kept her from her many professional commitments as an actress or from her political and social commitments as a climate activist. Asked about what remains for her to achieve, Jane Fonda is clear. “I want to see my grandchildren get old enough that I can get out knowing that they’re going to be okay,” she told Entertainment Tonight. She also explained that for her 85th birthday party in December, she planned a family reunion. “My daughter and grandkids will come in from Vermont. My son, his wife and child live in Los Angeles, and some friends will come over. We’ll just have a quiet time.”

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