Judi Dench losing her sight

British actress Judi Dench listens to questions during a press conference at the 46th Karlovy Vary International Film Festival (KVIFF) on July 2, 2011, in Karlovy Vary. Getty Images

British actress Judi Dench listens to questions during a press conference at the 46th Karlovy Vary International Film Festival on July 2, 2011, in Karlovy Vary.
Getty Images

LONDON (CBS/AP)The vision of James Bond's boss is fading.

British Oscar winner Judi Dench says she is is battling to save her sight.

The star said in an interview published Saturday that she had been diagnosed with macular degeneration, an eye condition which can cause blindness, and that her eyesight was already so bad that she couldn't even read her own scripts.

The 77-year-old told the Daily Mirror that she was relying on friends and family to keep her up to speed with her lines.

"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," she told the newspaper during an interview at a London hotel. "The most distressing thing is in a restaurant in the evening I can't see the person I'm having dinner with."

The Mirror didn't say exactly where or when the interview took place. Messages left for Dench's agent were not immediately returned Saturday.

Dench made her Shakespearean debut in 1957 at London's Old Vic and has since taken on a vast number of theater, film and television roles.

She won an Academy Award for her role as Queen Elizabeth I in "Shakespeare in Love" and is best known to international audiences as intelligence boss M in the James Bond series.

The 10-time BAFTA winner has more than 100 films and TV show s to her credit, most recently in the movies "J. Edgar" and "My Week with Marilyn." She will next be seen in "The Best Exotic Marigold Hotel," to be released in May.

  • CBS News Staff

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