Val Kilmer Says He Misses Having a Voice Following His Tracheotomy
By Paige Gawley
Val Kilmer is opening up about his health following a battle with throat cancer that resulted in him getting a tracheotomy a few years back. The 60-year-old actor appeared on Tuesday's episode of Good Morning America in support of his memoir, I'm Your Huckleberry.
In the video interview, Kilmer sounds drastically different and speaks with his hand to his neck following his tracheotomy, a procedure where a breathing tube is surgically inserted into the front of the neck in an effort to help a person breathe.
"I feel a lot better than I sound, but I feel wonderful," he said. "I was diagnosed with throat cancer which healed very quickly. This is a tracheotomy to help me breathe because my glands in my throat swelled up as well."
As for what he misses about his old voice, Kilmer quipped, "That I had one! And that I didn’t laugh like a pirate."
In his new memoir, Kilmer writes about his past relationships with women including Angelina Jolie, Cindy Crawford and Cher. While on GMA, Kilmer speculated about what drew the women to him.
"I’m committed. You have to be committed with a woman that’s as dynamic and as committed to their work," he said. "As someone like Cindy Crawford, who was the number one model on the planet at the time."
Despite his high-profile relationships, Kilmer said that he's "very shy" and has simply "tried to live a quiet life out in New Mexico."
On the professional side, Kilmer is set to return to the world of Top Gun in its upcoming sequel, Top Gun: Maverick, where he'll reprise his role of Tom "Iceman" Kazansky, which he originated in the 1986 flick.
"It was absolutely moving. I really was surprised," Kilmer said of being on the set of the sequel. "And Tom [Cruise] was wearing his jacket, the original jacket from the first movie, it was just very moving. And I don’t want to give away anything, but in between takes, Tom and I just laughed like we were in high school."