When Michael C. Hall was diagnosed with Hodgkin's lymphoma last year, it was the timing that shook him the most. Facing his own mortality at age 38, the Dexter star was only a year younger than his father when he died of prostate cancer.
"I think I've been preoccupied since I was 11, and my father died, with the idea of the age 39: Would I live that long? What would that be like?" Hall told The New York Times. "To discover that I had the Hodgkin's was alarming, but at the same time I felt kind of bemused, like: Wow. Huh. How interesting."
Hall turned 39 in February, a month after he announced his diagnosis, and is currently in remission.
He won best actor in a drama at this year's Golden Globes and Screen Actors Guild Awards. He wore a knit cap to both ceremonies to hide his hair loss.
Hall says his roles as a funeral director in Six Feet Under and as a secret serial killer in Dexter is no coincidence.
"I have my own repressed people in my life that I've drawn on, and had my own tendency toward repression," he says. "Maybe it has to do with not knowing quite what to do with the storm of feelings that accompanied my father's death. Maybe it's a learned behavior. Now I'm taking it to the bank."