Swayze not letting cancer interfere with TV role

Sun Jun 8, 2008 7:19pm EDT
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By Kimberly Nordyke

LOS ANGELES (Hollywood Reporter) - Pancreatic cancer is not slowing Patrick Swayze.

The "Dirty Dancing" veteran stars in the cop drama "The Beast," which has just been picked up by cable's A&E Network.

Swayze plays an unorthodox but effective FBI veteran who trains a new partner (Travis Fimmel) in his hard-edged and psychologically clever style of agenting while being pursued by a secret Internal Affairs team.

"I have searched for quite a long time to find a character that is this multilayered, unpredictable and downright entertaining as well as a project this current and cutting-edged," Swayze said in a statement.

The statement did not address his health, but network executives confirmed that his doctors have cleared him to resume work. They have ordered 13 hour-long episodes to go into production this summer in Chicago, with a premiere set for early 2009.

Swayze, 55, was diagnosed with cancer in March, and has been receiving treatment at Stanford University Medical Center, near San Francisco.

Reuters/Hollywood Reporter

<p>Patrick Swayze attends the fan screening of "Mission: Impossible III" at the Grauman's Chinese theatre in Hollywood May 4, 2006. REUTERS/Mario Anzuoni</p>