Hugo Weaving suffers from epilepsy

Published: March 28, 2020

Hugo Weaving is best known from his roles in blockbuster trilogies Lord of the Rings and The Matrix, but few know that the star suffers from a chronic neurological disorder – epilepsy.

The actor was diagnosed with the condition aged 13 and has been on medication since. Speaking to, Weaving revealed the effect epilepsy had on him, describing the moments before each seizure as possibly his “last few seconds on Earth”.

He also told the news provider: “I’m a strong believer that all your lows are also your highs … that the things that happen to you which are most awful are often the things you learn most from.“

It is thought that around 60 million people worldwide suffer from epilepsy, which causes the patient to have repeated seizures. These fits can occur suddenly and vary from person to person in severity.

Hugo Weaving

Some sufferers experience what is called an aura before having the seizure, whereas others suddenly start convulsing. This aura can come in the form of deja vu, nausea, blurred vision, tingling sensation, numbness or dizziness and make the patient aware of an impending fit. Those who do not experience auras, however, have no way of predicting when they will have a seizure. For this reason, many choose not to drive cars. Hugo Weaving is said to be one of those people.

Epilepsy is not in itself life-threatening. However, the sufferer can sustain serious and sometimes lethal injuries during a seizure, whereby all control over the body is lost.

Other celebrities who suffer from epilepsy include Danny Glover and Prince.

Images: PR Photos

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Published March 28, 2020 by in Celebrities
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2 Responses to “Hugo Weaving suffers from epilepsy”

  1. Bonnie

    29. Mar, 2011

    I realize that the world needs to be educated about Epilepsy, and nothing more clearly drives that home more than hearng seizures referred to as ‘fits’ They are not fits, they are seizures, I can only encourage peole to educate themselve. This is an illness whose attached stigma is worse than the illness itself. Most people with Epilepsy are bright , very capable people. those of you with this disorder … you can do anything and must believe in yourself. we must all struggle to dispell the stigma that causes this illness to be so difficullt ti accept…. love tp all that struggle

  2. Else Harbeau

    29. Mar, 2010

    Here’s a bit more info:

    While it’s true that Hugo Weaving is epileptic and has been since adolescence, most of your information dates from a 1992 interview Weaving gave the Australian magazine Womens’ Day. (The SMH article you cite, which dates from 2003, pulled its quotes from that piece.) While the Womens’ Day article was on the whole a positive, informative piece, the magazine’s headlines were hysterical and overblown, and quotes in which Weaving described his emotions at the onset of a seizure (ie a brief, irrational fear) were conflated and taken out of context. (This 1992 Herald Sun article clarifies things a bit:

    In a 2006 Sun Herald interview, Weaving stated he hadn’t had a seizure in years, and his condition is fully controlled by medication. Epiepsy hasn’t adversely affected his career, nor has he experienced seizures while working professionally. He never learned to drive because his seizures were most severe at the age when mosy youngsters learn that skill. In the piece Weaving said he could now get a license if he wished, but joked “Now I’m so used to not driving, I’m scared of what I’d do.”

    Rumors that Weaving’s epilepsy is strobe-triggered, or that he suffered a seizure during a 2000 preview of The White Devil while performing with the Sydney Theatre Company are false. In the 2006 Sun Herald piece, Weaving said that his youthful triggers were stress and multitasking. The latter incident, during which Weaving briefly stopped breathing during a strangulation scene, was caused by a severe case of the flu combined with the actors’ overexuberance in enacting the scene. Weaving jokes about the incident to this day, but has never attributed it to epilepsy.

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