Judi Dench Talks About Coping With Fading Eyesight


Judi Dench Talks About Coping With Fading Eyesight


The 'Second Best Exotic Marigold Hotel' actress jokes her co-stars believe she has more lines because of her thicker scripts.
Judi Dench discusses her vision problem in a new interview. The 80-year-old actress suffers macular degeneration that leads to gradual loss of vision. Because of her condition, the British veteran movie star usually gets thicker scripts.

"So, if six of us were coming in to read a sonnet they'd all have one piece of paper and I'd have two or three," she tells PEOPLE, before jokingly adding, "They'd think, 'why does she have a bigger part?' when it's all the same!"

Her fading eyesight also prevents her from doing her hobby, painting. "Then I thought, 'That's what's painting is about. You should paint what you see.' And therefore it doesn't matter - don't translate it literally, translate it in the only way you can," she says.

"My eyes only affect me if I'm somewhere dark and there are steps and I don't see very well," she opens up. "I couldn't go on the [London] Underground now without somebody because I couldn't work a machine. I can't see to do it. But fortunately, I get somebody to come with me - ask any of my friends or family. I'm not going to make it something that's going to stop me."

Since Judi's mother also suffered macular degeneration, there is possibility her daughter, actress Finty Williams, will contract it. "I think she probably ought to go sooner rather than later to have her eyes checked out. I don't think you automatically have it," she explains.

Despite her eye condition, Judi Dench has no plan to retire anytime soon. She previously told The Hollywood Reporter, "I heard a woman being interviewed on the radio the other day who was 105, and I expected this very frail voice, but this wonderful voice came out and she said to this reporter who was interviewing her, 'I'll tell you one thing, don't stop anything. I never stop anything I'm doing because otherwise I'll never get started again.' And I thought, 'That'll do.' "


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