‘Hopelessly Devoted to You’ Puts Olivia Newton-John’s Battle with Cancer Front and Center

Since the days of Grease, audiences have been dazzled by Olivia Newton-John. She seemed to have this girl next door quality while retaining an air of mystery.

On Saturday, pieces of that mystery were solved as Lifetime aired Hopelessly Devoted to You, a documentary telling the story of the monumental highs and catastrophic lows of Newton-John’s life.

In the film, the battle with cancer that the actress previously tried to keep private took center stage.

The movie follows the Australian actress as she becomes a singer in London and Nashville, as she lands the biggest role of her career as Sandy in Grease, and beyond.

The Lifetime film premiered just a month after Newton-John addressed rumors surrounding her cancer.

At the time, reports were flying around that Newton-John was on her deathbed but that was not the case.

“I just want to say the rumors of my death have been greatly exaggerated, to quote a very famous quote,” she said in a video. “I’m doing great and I want to wish all of you the happiest, healthiest 2019 that’s possible.”

Though the movie does focus on Newton-John’s battle with cancer, it only tackles her initial diagnoses in 1992. It does not cover how her cancer returned in 2013 and 2017.

The movie closes with Newton-John getting the idea to start the Olivia Newton-John Cancer Wellness and Research Centre.

“What’s the point of all this media attention if I can’t (use) it to some advantage?” she said in the film.

The actress opened the center in 2013.

Battle with Cancer

Newton-John was first diagnosed with breast cancer in 1992 when she was just 43. After her diagnoses, she elected to have chemotherapy for nine months. She also had a number of surgeries including a partial mastectomy and breast reconstruction.

During this time, the actress felt that one of the toughest parts of her illness was going through it all in front of the public. So when her cancer returned in 2013, she kept the news quiet.

It was only when the cancer came back in 2017 and mestathesized in her back that the singer had to push the dates of some of her shows and tell her fans what was going on.

“I thought, ‘It’s my life,’ and I just decided to keep it to myself,” she told PEOPLE of why she initially decided not to go public with what was going on.

The Australian singer has managed to remain positive throughout her treatment.

“I’m one of millions in this fight — I shouldn’t say fight — in this journey,” she said on the Australian show Sunday Night. “A lot of people see it as a fight, and wherever you choose to see it, that’s your prerogative. I see it as part of my mission.”

Along with her cancer treatments, Newton-John is trying natural ways to stay healthy.

“I’ve always loved a variety of fruit and vegetables – I love roasting veggies or eating them raw – and now I’m eating even more of them,” she told
Good Health & Wellbeing.“I’ve also eliminated most sugar from my diet as cancer feeds on sugar and, in general, I eat as much organically grown food as possible.”

Luckily for her, eating healthy has always been a priority in her life, so making the switch wasn’t that difficult.

“My mum taught me the importance of being aware of what you put in your body,” she said. “When I was a young girl I used to be jealous of my friends who had cookies and cakes in their lunch boxes. I wasn’t happy then, but today I’m so grateful for it.

Read more: What Does Olivia Newton-John Think About the New Lifetime Movie About Her Life?

Check out The Cheat Sheet on Facebook