Donald Sutherland is not “at death’s door,” despite a completely false and morbid tabloid report. Gossip Cop can debunk the story. It’s simply not true.
Alleging that “friends fear” the worst, the Globe claims the 84-year-old actor was “shaky and exhausted” during his time at the Venice Film Festival to promote Ad Astra earlier this month. The evidence for Sutherland’s supposed weakness? He needed help getting out of one of the city’s canal boats.
“Donald has been looking very frail and very tired,” a supposed “friend” is quoted as saying. “He gets worn out easily and has to sit down a lot. I’m afraid he may not have much longer!”
The article then quotes a doctor, who’s never treated or met Sutherland, as speculating he could have a deadly lung condition like “chronic obstructive pulmonary disease or severe emphysema.” The tabloid does acknowledge that the actor survived a variety of serious illnesses in his youth and that he hasn’t smoked for decades. However, it sticks to the false idea that the actor is in poor health.
Gossip Cop reached out to Sutherland’s spokesperson, who assures us the story is false and pointed to the actor’s string of recent appearances at premieres for Ad Astra. The actor’s rep further notes that he’ll be attending many additional festivals and awards galas over the next few months. The veteran actor has also been steadily working and has a number of other TV and film projects in development. The idea that he’s barely able to stand is absurd.
Gossip Cop should point out that getting out of regular boats is usually awkward and difficult, but getting out of a gondola is extremely difficult to do alone or with any grace, regardless of age. Sutherland is 84, so it’s totally reasonable he’d need some assistance while getting out of a rocking boat. Most people would.
Additionally, the tabloid constantly brings up “multiple health woes” and refers to “pals” and “friends” being concerned. However, the publication never explains what these new “health woes” are or how these “pals” know about Sutherland’s medical records. The outlet is just trying to sound authoritative by throwing around these totally vague claims, despite never backing them up with reliable facts.
The Globe frequently publishes untrue stories regarding the health of older stars. In March, Gossip Cop debunked the magazine’s story about Michael Douglas having “months to live” because his throat cancer had allegedly returned. In February, the outlet created a false rumor about Robert Redford also having “months to live” after a supposed resurgence of polio. Of course, both veteran actors are still alive and well. The tabloid’s habit of attacking aging celebrities is just loathsome.
Gossip Cop has determined this story is totally false.