After his “Young and the Restless” character survived cancer, actor Christian LeBlanc is opening up for the first time about his real-life experience with the disease.
In a Tuesday appearance on the Louisiana news station WWL-TV, the three-time Emmy winner said he was diagnosed in June with multiple myeloma, a blood cancer that develops in plasma cells in the bone marrow. His “Young and the Restless” character, Michael Baldwin, went through treatment for prostate cancer during the show’s 42nd season in 2015.
“It was interesting. You play that scene where you hear the word ― just the word ― in a doctor’s office: ‘Cancer.’ And I got to play that as Michael Baldwin,” LeBlanc said, referring to his role on “The Young and the Restless.” “Mine was a different situation. Mine happened so fast, it was a lot of me dealing with it first.”
He went on to note: “I’d never spent a day in the hospital in my 65 years until this year.”
LeBlanc first joined the cast of “The Young and the Restless” in 1991. He briefly exited the long-running soap opera two years later, only to return in 1997. Other acting credits include small roles on “As The World Turns” and “Guiding Light.”
Actor Christian LeBlanc expects to return to "The Young and the Restless" in November in time for the long-running soap opera's Thanksgiving episode.
Prior to receiving his diagnosis, LeBlanc began noticing changes in his physical appearance and overall health. He lost 35 pounds in two months, which became especially apparent when he put on a wedding band as part of his character’s costume “and the ring fell off without friction,” he said.
“My nose started bleeding on set sometimes,” he recalled. “This eye kind of got a little wonky and there was a tumor in the sinus cavity.”
It wasn’t long before “Young and the Restless” viewers took note, too.
“The fans caught it,” LeBlanc quipped. “I was getting people like: ‘Your eye is a little Jim Carrey that way, a little Michael this way.’”
Fortunately, the New Orleans-raised actor is now in remission and is expected to return to his long-running soap opera role in time for the show’s Thanksgiving episode, set to air next month. These days, he’s focused on regaining some of the weight he lost, noting that his doctors told him to “eat like it’s your job.”
“I was raised to fulfill this promise,” he said. “New Orleans, Louisiana ― easily done!”
Watch Christian LeBlanc’s WWL-TV interview below.