Christina Applegate says filming 'Dead To Me' while managing multiple sclerosis was 'torture,' so she might not ever act again
Christina Applegate told Variety that managing her MS symptoms while filming was "torture."
She stayed on board because completing "Dead To Me" was "too important" to the cast and crew.
If she ever acts again, Applegate said she needs to find a set as "loving" as "Dead To Me."
Christina Applegate recently told Variety that managing her multiple sclerosis (MS) symptoms while starring in her hit dramedy "Dead To Me" was "torture."
The newly-minted Hollywood Walk of Fame star recipient said the need to complete her character Jen's story motivated her to stay on board the Netflix series. However, people at the production company were concerned for her well-being. The grueling experience even made Applegate question whether she'll continue acting.
"They were gonna pull the plug, you know? Because it was like torture — and they felt like they were torturing me, too," she said of the show's decision-makers. "But I was like, 'No, no, no, no, no, no: We have to finish this story. It's too important to our hearts; too important to our souls.'"
Having the freedom to define her work process on her terms ultimately helped Applegate cross the finish line.
"So, if that meant me having to take a break in the middle of the day so I could go sleep — or me just leaving because I couldn't do anymore — then that's what we had to do," she explained.
Completing "Dead To Me" the way the story was intended to end was Applegate's "gift" to fans and everyone involved in the production, though the actor won't be viewing the final season as it would be "too hard" to watch.
The "Married...With Children" alum was diagnosed with MS on the set of "Dead To Me" in the summer of 2021. She had been experiencing balance issues and a tingling sensation in her limbs.
A neurological disease, MS has varying symptoms that often affect vision, speech, and mobility, according to the US National Institutes of Health (NIH). It can also cause cognitive issues, including trouble with attention, memory, and concentration, the site reported.
Applegate said she would need to learn the limitations of her MS symptoms before committing to another acting role. "It's about finding what I'm capable of doing. I'm so new in this right now. It takes time to kind of figure out this disease, and figure out what's bringing on symptoms," she said.
She also acknowledged that most production companies might not be as willing to accept the terms of her physical limitations.
"I have to find a place that's as loving as my set was, where they won't think I'm a diva by saying, 'Hey, I can only work five hours,'" the actor said.
"Dead To Me" premieres November 17 on Netflix.
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