Shannen Doherty, known for her iconic roles in ‘Beverly Hills, 90210’ and ‘Charmed,’ doesn’t mince words when discussing her current battle with Stage 4 breast cancer. In a recent interview for PEOPLE’s cover story, she boldly asserts, “I don’t want to die,” shedding light on her determination to face this formidable challenge head-on. The interview takes place on the set of her PEOPLE cover shoot, just four days before Thanksgiving, as a sliver of Los Angeles sunshine graces her face.
Despite the gravity of her diagnosis, Shannen Doherty remains characteristically candid, upbeat, and dry-witted. She opens up about the cancer that has spread to her bones, emphasizing her unwavering resolve to continue moving forward. “I’m not done with living. I’m not done with loving. I’m not done with creating. I’m not done with hopefully changing things for the better,” she declares with a smile. “I’m just not — I’m not done.”
Doherty’s journey with cancer has spanned eight years, leading her to contemplate the broader scope of her life. This reflective theme will be at the forefront of her upcoming podcast, ‘Let’s Be Clear with Shannen Doherty,’ set to premiere on December 6 on iHeartRadio. In this podcast, she plans to delve into various aspects of her life, from career highlights and past relationships to the different stages of her illness and her health routines.
Shannen Doherty’s battle with cancer began in 2015 when she initially shared her breast cancer diagnosis with PEOPLE. Following this, she underwent a mastectomy and endured rounds of chemotherapy and radiation. In April 2017, she shared on Instagram that she had entered remission. However, the cancer returned in 2019, and the subsequent year, she revealed her diagnosis of metastatic stage 4 cancer.
For Doherty, grappling with the questions of “Why me? Why did I get cancer?” and “Why did my cancer come back? Why am I stage 4?” has led her to seek a deeper purpose in life. She aspires to raise awareness and funds for cancer research while serving as a beacon of hope for individuals facing terminal cancer. “It’s insane to me [that] we still don’t have a cure,” she passionately emphasizes, highlighting the urgent need for continued research and support for those battling this devastating disease.