In a recent interview, Deadwood creator David Milch got very personal and revealed that he has been diagnosed with Alzheimer’s. The news from the Emmy-winning producer comes ahead of the much anticipated Deadwood movie which is set to premiere on HBO on May 31.
Milch opened up about his diagnosis in an interview with Vulture. He said that things started to feel off about five years ago when his friends noticed that he had “imperfect recall and tardy recall and short temper. I became more and more of an acquired taste.” It wasn’t until about a year ago when he had a brain scan and that’s when the news hit.
“As best I understand it, which is minimally, I have a deterioration in the organization of my brain,” he told Vulture. “And it’s progressive. And in some ways discouraging. In more than some ways — in every way I can think of.”
In an official statement Deadline received from HBO, they said: “We treasure our relationship with David Milch, a beloved and long-standing member of the HBO family. We honor David’s privacy and stand by his side in every way as he faces this challenge.”
The interview with Milch goes on to say that the cast and crew of the Deadwood film are aware of his diagnosis, but do not discuss it. Naturally, the diagnosis is emotional for him and he says that he thinks his own father had Alzheimer’s as well.
“That was a while ago, and the diagnosis was not as sophisticated or specific, but in retrospect, he exhibited all the symptoms of the illness,” said Milch. He also recalls the deterioration of his mentor at Yale, Robert Penn Warren. “He was not well toward the end of his life,” he said. “He was every day encountering subtle differences in his condition. But there was an unflinching dignity in the way that he carried himself and a bravery and kindness.”