Shannen Doherty, 48, is battling stage four cancer, she revealed on Good Morning America on Feb. 4. The actress revealed that her cancer came back a year ago, so she was struggling with the disease throughout the entire time that she filmed BH90210. “I don’t think that I’ve processed it,” she admitted. “It’s a bitter pill to swallow. There are days when I say…why me? But then I go…well, why not me? Who else besides me deserves this? None of us do. I would say that my first reaction is always concern about how I’m going to tell my mom and my husband.”
Shannen already knew that her cancer had returned when her Beverly Hills 90210 co-star, Luke Perry, died in March 2019, and she said that the diagnosis really affected the way she coped with Luke’s passing. “It was so weird for me to be diagnosed and then somebody who was seemingly healthy to go first,” she revealed. “It was really shocking.” However, she also added that this is what pushed her to appear on BH90210, despite being sick. “The least I could to do honor him was do that show,” she said.
While on set, Shannen found comfort in her co-star, Brian Austin Green, who was one of the only that knew about her private health battle at the time. “Prior to shooting, he would always call me and say, listen, whatever happens, I have your back,” she explained. “We were able to talk about Luke in a way that was very positive and uplifting and sort of remember a lot of great moments.”
— Good Morning America (@GMA) February 4, 2020
Shannen got emotional throughout the interview, and even had to choke back tears on more than one occasion. She also admitted that she’s “petrified” of the future, and worries about how her mother and husband will deal if anything happens to her.
Shannen was first diagnosed with breast cancer in 2015, and she had a mastectomy in 2016. At that point, the cancer had already spread to her lymph nodes. She underwent chemo and radiation, and proudly announced that the cancer was in remission in April 2017. Unfortunately, that lasted for less than two years. Now, she said she wants to “control the narrative” surrounding her disease, which is why she is opening up about her struggles.