The 77-year-old screen icon recently revealed she’s been receiving treatment for the age-related condition macular degeneration, which her mother also suffered, and admitted that she now relies on family and friends to read scripts to her.
She told Britain’s Daily Mirror, “I can’t read scripts anymore because of the trouble with my eyes. And so somebody comes in and reads them to me, like telling me a story. It’s usually my daughter or my agent or a friend and actually I like that, because I sit there and imagine the story in my mind.
“I’ve got what my ma (mother) had, macular degeneration, which you get when you get old. I had wet in one eye and dry in the other and they had to do these injections and I think it’s arrested it. I hope so.
“The most distressing thing is in a restaurant in the evening I can’t see the person I’m having dinner with.”
The Casino Royale star’s comments sparked fears her failing eyesight would force her to retire from Hollywood – but Dench is adamant her condition is not as serious as it sounds.
In a statement to Reuters, she says, “In response to the numerous articles in the media concerning my eye condition – macular degeneration – I do not wish for this to be overblown.
“This condition is something that thousands and thousands of people all over the world are having to contend with. It’s something that I have learnt to cope with and adapt to – and it will not lead to blindness.”