Warwick Davis attends Willow premiere with wife three years after family gathered to say goodbye to her
| Last updated
Warwick Davis attended the Willow premiere in the US with his wife, having gathered his family to say goodbye to her three years ago.
The actor is reprising his role as the titular character, 34 years on from first playing him in the much-loved 1988 film.
The 52-year-old is delighted to be taking Willow to the small screen in the new Disney+ series, but much more important is the fact he was able to attend the premiere in Los Angeles with his wife, Samantha.
Back in 2019, she was diagnosed with sepsis - a condition which affects the body's immune system and can be fatal if not treated quickly - and she had to undergo life-saving emergency surgery.
Warwick opened up about the minutes before she was taken into the operating theatre, when he and their two children, Annabelle and Harrison, feared she may not pull through.
Speaking to The Sun in July, he said: "Our family gathered by her bedside; although optimistic, we were sort of saying goodbye in case Sam didn't survive."
He went on: "The next few hours were the longest of my life as I waited on the ward with our children in the empty space left by Sam’s hospital bed.
"I hoped it would not symbolise a future for us without her."
Sam's health had taken a turn for the worse before the family were due to set off on holiday.
At first, she thought she was just tired, however, as her symptoms got worse, the family called an out-of-hours doctor to see her, and she was rushed to hospital.
"By now, Sam was feeling absolutely terrible. She was becoming drowsy, weak and hadn't been to the toilet in over 24 hours," recalled Warwick.
"Fortunately for us, our doctor recognised Sam's symptoms and told us to head to A&E immediately with a suspected case of sepsis."
Thankfully, Sam made it through the operation, with Warwick caring for her as she recovered at home.
He said: "I broke down every night thinking that this terrible illness that came out of nowhere might take my soulmate away from me.
"To this day Sam still feels the effects of sepsis and some PTSD from her experience. If I'm completely honest, I do too.
"We never take life for granted now, living each day as if it were our last.
"I appreciate and cherish every moment that Sam and I spend together."
Now, Warwick is excited to bring Willow to a new generation and a new format.
"I played the character originally when I was 17 years old, so very inexperienced with life, and acting as well," he told PA news agency.
"Coming back to the character now, I've got a lot more life experience, I'm older, wiser, hopefully a better actor now, and so I brought all those things to the character.
"So, that was a delight actually, coming back to this guy, because I know him so well."
He continued: "The series gives us kind of long-form to tell the story, and to develop characters, and to really explore the world of Willow which, if you look at the series compared to the film, it's really a drop in the ocean what we see in the film.
"The world is much, much bigger than that. Much, much bigger."
You can now watch Willow on Disney+.