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Judi Dench diagnosed with degenerative eye condition

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UPDATE: Dame Judi Dench released a statement to EW about her degenerative eye condition, downplaying reports that she will go blind. “In response to the numerous articles in the media concerning my eye condition — macular degeneration — I do not wish for this to be overblown … This condition is something that thousands and thousands of people all over the world are having to contend with. It’s something that I have learnt to cope with and adapt to — and it will not lead to blindness.”

EARLIER: Dame Judi Dench is severely struggling with her vision, and says that she has been diagnosed with macular degeneration, which can cause loss of eyesight, the AP reports. The 77-year-old Academy Award-winning actress (Shakespeare in Love) told the Daily Mirror: “I can’t read scripts anymore because of the trouble with my eyes. And so somebody comes in and reads them to me … The most distressing thing is in a restaurant in the evening I can’t see the person I’m having dinner with.” Dench is now shooting the latest James Bond film, Skyfall, reprising her role as M. EW was unable to reach Dench’s manager for comment.