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Documentary chronicles actor’s battle with cancer

Tue., May 12, 2009

In what could prove to be a new kind of celebrity-citizen journalism, actress Farrah Fawcett and NBC are promising viewers a behind-closed-doors, video-diary look at the former “Charlie’s Angels” star’s ongoing battle with cancer.

The NBC News documentary, airing Friday, uses Fawcett’s own narration and images shot by her and friend Alana Stewart with Fawcett’s video recorder.

Fawcett and Stewart are co-producers of the film, titled “Farrah’s Story.”

They have been shooting the story for 2 1/2 years, according to the network. The film will chronicle Fawcett’s thoughts and emotions during that time, as well as journeys to medical establishments in Germany and the U.S. for treatment.

“This film is very personal,” Fawcett said. “At the time, I didn’t know if anybody would ever see it. But at some point, the footage took on a life of its own and dictated that it be seen.”

Fawcett, 62, is suffering from anal cancer that has spread to her liver.

According to NBC, viewers of the film will see actor and longtime Fawcett companion Ryan O’Neal, who himself is battling leukemia, offering his support.

Stewart, Fawcett, former “Angels” co-stars Jaclyn Smith and Kate Jackson, Farrah’s father Jim Fawcett and her doctors also participate in the documentary. Stewart shot most of the video.

“This is an incredibly intimate and moving story about Farrah’s struggle,” Doug Vaughan, NBC News senior vice president of specials and alternative development, said in a statement.

“Farrah wanted us to see the face of cancer, and she wanted to set the record straight regarding her diagnosis, her treatment and her outlook on the future.”

NBC paid her a licensing fee for the footage, but isn’t saying how much.


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