Wow.  (A tip of the hat to GreenCine Daily.)

This may be the most successful celebrity “Hide It From the Media” operation since Robert Altman’s heart transplant! Who knew?

Oscar-nominated star Samantha Morton has revealed that she was ‘close to death’ after suffering a debilitating stroke two years ago. After the stroke Morton took an unexplained year-and-a-half break from film-making. During her lengthy recovery friends, family and managers made a concerted effort to protect her from publicity.

The 31-year-old actress found that learning to walk again was just one part of a battle she had to wage in private, away from the eyes of Hollywood, where the film industry can take a dim view of serious illness. Morton said that she had to work hard to make a full return to good health. Now recovered, she gave birth to her second daughter, Edie, in January.

In 2006 it was announced that Morton had pulled out of a thriller called Transsiberian. The story was that she was to be replaced in her role by fellow English actress Emily Mortimer because she had been hurt when part of the ceiling fell down on her in her new home. This was only half of the truth. A few days after the accident that summer she had suffered a stroke as a result of injuries to her head. The devastating nature of her health problem has been partly masked by her prodigious workload since returning to work.