The Hunger Games' Stanley Tucci Opens Up About Cancer Diagnosis And His Recovery

Stanley Tucci in Supernova
(Image credit: (StudioCanal))

Stanley Tucci is a favorite performer for many of us. We’ve come to love him as a character actor who doesn’t always lead his films, but will most certainly steal the show and somehow become the most memorable part of the whole thing. I’m talking about Nigel in The Devil Wears Prada, Olive’s dad in Easy A, Dr. Erskine in Captain America and obviously, Caesar Flickerman in the Hunger Games films. In regards to Tucci’s personal health, the actor has chosen to keep a major detail in the background until this week, as the beloved star revealed that he was previously diagnosed with cancer.

The 60-year-old Hunger Games star has shared that he was diagnosed with cancer three years ago. Stanley Tucci told Vera Magazine that doctors found a tumor at the base of his tongue that led to intensive treatments. As he explained:

It was too big to operate, so they had to do high-dose radiation and chemo. I’d vowed I’d never do anything like that, because my first wife died of cancer, and to watch her go through those treatments for years was horrible.

Tucci unfortunately had experiences with cancer prior to his own when his first wife, Kathryn Spath-Tucci, contracted breast cancer and sadly, died from the disease in 2009. The actor shared his hesitancy to undergo chemotherapy after seeing his late partner’s experiences but, thankfully, his treatment allowed him to get better. Now to his knowledge, Tucci shared the good news that his cancer is “unlikely” to come back. He continued to reveal his experiences to the magazine:

I had a feeding tube for six months. I could barely make it to the twins’ high school graduation. [Cancer] makes you more afraid and less afraid at the same time. I feel much older than I did before I was sick. But you still want to get ahead and get things done.

A feeding tube is a medical device that is implemented to provide nutrition to people who cannot eat through the way of the mouth or swallow safely. Because Tucci’s tumor was in his mouth, it sounds like it caused some uncomfortable complications for the actor that made living daily life much more difficult.

Stanley Tucci has five children, 18-year-old twins Isabel and Nicolo and 16-year-old Camila, who he had with his late wife, along with younger children 6-year-old Matteo and 3-year-old Emilia, whomst he had with his current wife Felicity Blunt. Yes, Blunt as in the sister of Tucci’s The Devil Wears Prada co-star Emily Blunt. In fact, the Jungle Cruise actress helped introduce the couple. They met at Blunt’s wedding to John Krasinski in 2010.

Dealing with cancer is a very personal matter, and it's completely understandable that Tucci decided not to share with the public until now. Now, we can take plenty of comfort in the fact that his health problems have since improved, and he’s regularly making the internet thirsty with his fun cocktail tutorials while also starring in some incredible projects. Next up is The King’s Man, which arrives on December 22. Cheers to you, good sir! It's great to hear you're feeling healthy these days.

Sarah El-Mahmoud
Staff Writer

Sarah El-Mahmoud has been with CinemaBlend since 2018 after graduating from Cal State Fullerton with a degree in Journalism. In college, she was the Managing Editor of the award-winning college paper, The Daily Titan, where she specialized in writing/editing long-form features, profiles and arts & entertainment coverage, including her first run-in with movie reporting, with a phone interview with Guillermo del Toro for Best Picture winner, The Shape of Water. Now she's into covering YA television and movies, and plenty of horror. Word webslinger. All her writing should be read in Sarah Connor’s Terminator 2 voice over.