‘Feeling rather good about this’: Beloved actor Sam Neill receives prestigious honour

Dec 07, 2023
Fans flooded the comments section with congratulatory messages, expressing their admiration for Neill's talent and the well-deserved recognition he has received. Source: Getty Images.

In a testament to his enduring impact on the world of entertainment, renowned actor Sam Neill has been granted a place of distinction on Rolling Stone AU/NZ magazine’s esteemed ‘Living Icon’ list.

The recognition, reserved for those who have made their mark on popular culture, has elicited a wave of congratulatory messages from both industry peers and dedicated fans.

The announcement came via Neill’s own social media channels, where the actor, known for his iconic roles in Jurassic Park, The Piano, and countless other cinematic gems, expressed a blend of humility and humour.

“Been named a LIVING ICON by Rolling Stone magazine. Feeling rather good about this, just quietly. I can feel my ego inflating slightly from its flat old tyre usual self,” Neill said.

“First of all , so much better than being a dead icon.

“Second, keeping company with such luminaries as Jimmy , Taika, Nicole, Cate , Tim , Neil et al.

“Third, I’ve been reading RS since the 60s dammit. And … just being noticed at all , I dunno… Right , that’s enough before i get up myself or something.”


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Fans flooded the comments section with congratulatory messages, expressing their admiration for Neill’s talent and the well-deserved recognition he has received.

“Congrats sam !!! well deserved!!” one fan wrote.

“Such a legend, Sam. Rolling Stone got this one right.”

“Well deserved Sam, you’re a living treasure,” commented another.


“You really are a living legend Adored and Loved.”

Poppy Reid, the Editor-in-Chief of The Brag Media, shared insights into the criteria that propelled individuals to secure a coveted spot on their esteemed list.

“Rolling Stone AU/NZ is renowned for its lists and we take the responsibility of anointing the most worthy entertainment careerists and cultural impact drivers very seriously,” Reid said. 

“With the weight of the industry we want to champion on our shoulders, we find gravity in helping to export local talent to the rest of the world.

“And so, as we gathered our team and a selection of industry experts, we debated, examined, pondered and shared tense moments as we went back and forth questioning what makes an Icon, the kind of impact they have on culture and if career longevity matters. We also added consistent relevancy, innovation, accolades and global influence to our ‘must-have’ criteria.

“Our very first ‘Icons Issue’ is a celebration of broken boundaries, shattered ceilings and opened doors, proving brilliance knows no borders. Here’s to the power of creativity, innovation and influence.”

The honour will no doubt come as some good news for the beloved star who recently revealed that he had been battling stage 3 blood cancer.

As concerns grew for the star, Neill was forced to take to social media to alleviate any concerns and let fans know he was doing fine.

Neill posted a video to Instagram in which he shared further details regarding the condition of his health and that he is currently in remission.

“Hi I’m Sam Neill, actor of sorts, vintner, and an author as it happens. And my news seems to be all over the news at the moment, and it’s sort of ‘Cancer ! Cancer! Cancer !’ Which is slightly tiresome because as you see, I am alive and well and I have been in remission for eight months, which feels really good,” he said at the time.

“And I’m alive and kicking and I’m going to work.”

Neill then encouraged fans to focus less on his latest health news and instead get excited about his new book.

“So here I am, and I just wish the headline wasn’t ‘that thing’ so much, because the main thing is that I have written this book, it’s called ‘Did I Ever Tell You This?’. And it does mention cancer because that’s the sort of context in which I wrote it,” he said.

“So I hope you enjoy it, and let’s not worry too much about ‘all that’ because I’m fine. Okay!”


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Neill was forced to take to Instagram again after a recent health update that left many concerned.

In an emotional interview with Australian Story, Neill revealed that after chemotherapy proved ineffective in his battle against cancer his doctors transitioned him to anti-cancer medication which resulted in him going into remission for over 12 months.

Despite this moment of respite, Neill acknowledged that his medical team had informed him that the effectiveness of the treatment wouldn’t last forever, a reality he is “prepared for”.

“I’m not in any way frightened of dying. That doesn’t worry me. It’s never worried me from the beginning, but I would be annoyed,” he told the program.

“I’d be annoyed because there are things I still want to do. Very irritating, dying. But I’m not afraid of it.”

His latest update sent fans into a frenzy of concern, but the actor swiftly responded, quelling their worries with a touching and reassuring message.

“I made a passing remark that the treatment I’m on, which has me in remission, will inevitably fail one day, he began.

“At such time as it does fail, we’ll try something else. There are all sorts of things that are happening with cancer these days. It’s a whole new ball game.

“So please stop worrying, I’m getting a lot of messages on social media and from friends. Sorry to worry everybody – it’s all good, it’s all fine. It’s a beautiful day, I’m off to work.”


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