George Clooney is drop dead sexy and a do-gooder who spends his time helping in the Sudan. But this past visit almost proved deadly for the 49-year-old actor who got malaria, a serious, sometimes fatal illness that is contracted by a mosquito bite and is present in 100 different countries.
Clooney's intentions are noble, indeed. He is on a mission to avoid another potential genocide in the Sudan region. But it comes at a price -- high fevers, shaking chills, and flu-like illness. Reports have been conflicted, but his rep tells People that he has made a full recovery despite news reports to the contrary.
"George is completely over the Malaria he contracted while in the Sudan during the first week in January," his rep tells PEOPLE. "This was his second bout with it. This illustrates how with proper medication, the most lethal condition in Africa, can be reduced to a bad ten days instead of a death sentence."
Stars are out there risking their lives for causes! It sure puts things in perspective, no?
OK, maybe I wouldn't go that far. Stars and their causes can get a little old. I want to love it. After all, using your power and influence for a good cause is great, but somehow, somewhere along the way, it ends up feeling sanctimonious and fake. Like Bono and his mission to save the world or "Santa Angelina," it just reeks of hypocrisy and a greater-than-thou sensibility.
That said, George Clooney has always struck me as the real deal. He makes no apology for his mansions and riches, but he genuinely seems to want to do right in the world. He seems like he actually cares. And now he has malaria for his efforts. Kind of makes you wish you'd stayed home.
Of course, from his perspective, he can use this now as an opportunity to expose (not literally) many people in the US to malaria and the dangers and the available treatments. Do I sense a new cause for celebs? Will they all be contracting tropical diseases in order to raise awareness?
Let's hope not! George needs to get back to being hot ASAP. Since I am sure it takes a while to feel 100 percent again, my thoughts are with him for a swift recovery.
Do you think it was worth it?
Image via csztova/Flickr