When Swedish actor Dolph Lundgren portrayed Ivan Drago in Rocky IV he immediately one of the most famous actors on the planet.
The role of Ivan Drago set off a nearly 40-year acting career where he was one of Hollywood’s ‘It Guys’ in the 80s and 90s alongside Sylvester Stallone, JCVD, and Arnold Schwarzenegger. My brother and I used to rent Universal Soldier once a week on VHS and Masters of the Universe was the first movie my dad took me to in the theaters.
On Wednesday, Dolph Lundgren appeared on In Depth With Graham Bensinger where he revealed publicly for the first time that he’s been battling lung cancer for 8 years.
He was first diagnosed in 2015 and underwent successful treatment. His lung cancer returned in 2020 and at that point, he was told it was terminal and that he had 2-3 years left to live.
During the interviews below, Lundgren reveals how the doctor told him in 2020 that his lungs, kidneys, and spine all had tumors. But to look at Dolph in the interview below, he seems to be handling the treatment well.
Stealing a line from Ivan Drago while speaking about his lung cancer, Dolph says ‘if it dies, it dies.’
In a separate portion of the interview, Dolph Lundgren told a wild story. He recalls filming Red Scorpion which came out in 1988.
They filmed that movie in South Africa when war was raging in Angola. Dolph nonchalantly talks about a stuntman using one of the prop guns filled with blanks in the actual war the day after filming, killing a combatant, and taking his weapon back to the set to show everyone.
In that same clip (above), Lundgren also admitted to using steroids in the 1980s and 90s. He says he doesn’t know if steroid use has anything to do with his cancer but says “it struck him” the steroids could have something to do with his lung cancer.
If you’ve never seen the Red Scorpion, here’s the trailer:
According to TMZ, Dolph Lundgren has been receiving treatment from Dr. Alexandra Drakaki who has been able to shrink his tumors.
In recent years, Dolph Lundgren has appeared in Creed II as Ivan Drago as well as having roles in Aquaman, Sharknado 5, and The Expendables franchise.