Veteran actor Sir John Hurt has revealed he’s battling pancreatic cancer but says he is “more than optimistic” about his future.

John HurtJohn Hurt has been diagnosed with pancreatic cancer.

In a statement released today (June 16th) the 75 year old said, “I have always been open about the way in which I conduct my life and in that spirit I would like to make a statement. I have recently been diagnosed with early-stage pancreatic cancer.”

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“I am undergoing treatment and am more than optimistic about a satisfactory outcome, as indeed is the medical team. I am continuing to focus on my professional commitments and will shortly be recording Jeffrey Bernard is Unwell (one of life’s small ironies) for BBC Radio 4”.

Hurt was knighted in the 2015 New Year Honours for his services to drama and has been nominated for two academy awards. His first breakout role came in the 1966 film A Man For All Seasons, in which he starred as Richard Rich. He then went on to star as Quentin Crisp in the TV film The Naked Civil Servant, as John Merrick in David Lynch's biopic The Elephant Man and in sci-fi horror Alien.

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In recent years Hurt also appeared in the Harry Potter movies as Mr. Ollivander and in Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull. His most recent big screen appearance was in 2014’s Hercules.