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Cancer: Paul Newman's Friend Confirms Ill, Newman Turns Over $120 Million To Charity

First Posted: 06/18/08 06:12 AM ET Updated: 05/25/11 01:35 PM ET

Paul Newman

NEW HAVEN, Conn. — A longtime neighbor and business partner of Paul Newman has told The Associated Press the 83-year-old actor is battling cancer.

Writer A.E. Hotchner, who partnered with Newman to start Newman's Own salad dressing company in the 1980s, says Newman told him about the disease about 18 months ago. He doesn't say what kind of cancer.

Concerns about Newman's health have been circulating for months. Last month, officials at Connecticut's Westport Country Playhouse cited unspecified health issues when they announced that Newman wouldn't direct "Of Mice and Men" this fall.

In response to reports of Newman's illness, the actor's spokesman issued a statement Tuesday saying that Newman is "doing nicely." The statement doesn't specifically address cancer.

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Fox News reports:

Movie star Paul Newman has quietly turned over the entire value of his ownership in Newman's Own -- the company that makes salad dressing and cookies -- to charity.


Completed over a two-year period in 2005 and 2006, the amount of his donations to Newman's Own Foundation Inc. comes to an astounding $120 million.

This is unprecedented for any movie star or anyone from what we call Hollywood. Of course Newman and actress wife Joanne Woodward have never been Hollywood types. They've lived their lives quietly in Westport, Conn., for the last 50 years. (They were married in January 1958. And people said it wouldn't last!)

This column learned about this extraordinary gift as news started coming out recently about Newman's battle

Newman in May:

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Filed by Katherine Thomson  |