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In his first TV interview since suffering a massive heart attack in February, Kevin Smith assured Today‘s Savannah Guthrie and Craig Melvin that he “feels great” during a Monday appearance on the morning show. The comedian opened up about getting his health back on track after nearly losing his life due to a clogged artery.
“Honestly, the heart attack was the best thing that ever happened to me and it makes sense because I had 100 percent blockage in the LAD, the big artery, the ‘widowmaker,'” the filmmaker said, adding that he couldn’t be more grateful to Dr. Ladenheim, the surgeon “who saved my life.”
Smith went on to say that he was awake throughout his life-saving operation. “[The doctor] was like, ‘You were singing a song. Degrassi?’ And I was singing the theme song to Degrassi because it’s very hopeful. I was like, ‘Whatever it takes, I know I can make it through,'” he joked. “So they keep you awake and I was terrified the whole time. … I was afraid of dying. That’s my biggest fear ever.”
He continued: “They kept me awake and the doctor said at one point, ‘I’m going to open the stent now and you tell me if you feel better.’ And the moment he did, I felt instantly better and it made sense because none of the blood was going through there for who knows how long. [I had] 100 percent blockage [for] years, so I wasn’t getting proper oxygen. So now I feel great.”
Asked if he ever suspected that he had a heart problem, Smith said he had no idea. “I didn’t know until I was in the operating room that I had a heart attack. [The doctor] was like, ‘You had a massive heart attack.’ I was like, ‘Nobody told me. Are you serious?’ And he’s like, ‘What’s your pain threshold, zero to 10?’ I was like, ‘Negative three!'” he said with a laugh. “He was like, ‘Are you high?’ I was like, ‘Yeah, I got blazed before my show, man. Maybe that’s why I feel no pain?’ He was like, ‘No, you’re on fentanyl.'”
During his interview on Today, Smith also revealed that he has lost 32 pounds since his general physician ordered him to drop 50. The Clerks star said that he’s maintaining his weight loss with the help of Weight Watchers, for which he now serves as a brand ambassador alongside Oprah Winfrey and DJ Khaled.
“I joined Weight Watchers and they made me an ambassador,” he revealed. “So it’s me, Oprah and DJ Khaled. I’m in pretty good company. We’re all trying to lose weight and stuff like that. Well, I am. I don’t know what they’re up to. So I got another 18 pounds for the doctor goal, but I think I’m going to try to lose 25 more pounds on the program.”
Later, Smith — a self-proclaimed “wake-and-baker” — admitted he was “feeling fantastic” because he got high before stepping onto the Today set. However, he insisted that he was also in particularly good spirits because his daughter, Harley Quinn Smith, is premiering her new film, All These Small Moments, at the Tribeca Film Festival while he’s in New York City.
“I’m happy for her because it’s the first-ever movie she’s done without me and that’s the most important thing in the world to her,” Smith said. “She’s like, ‘I don’t wanna be in another Kevin Smith movie.’ … So we get to go see it at the Tribeca Film Festival tomorrow. It’s kind of dope, man.”
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