Jamie Foxx didn’t want his fans to see him at less than 100 percent. On July 22, the 55-year-old finally opened up about being hospitalized for several weeks in April and his road to recovery from what In Touch has confirmed was a massive stroke. “I just didn’t want you to see me like that,” the actor said in a video. “I want you to see me laughing, having a good time, doing a movie, doing a television show. I just didn’t want you to see me with tubes running out of me and trying to figure out if I was going to make it through.”

It wasn’t just the fans he wanted to shield. An insider tells In Touch that the Just Mercy star also wanted to protect his image in the industry. “He always wants to show everyone in the business that he’s just fine,” says the insider. “And that he’s not damaged goods by any stretch.”

The plan backfired. The Oscar winner, who was shooting the Netflix comedy Back in Action with Cameron Diaz when he was hospitalized, went into radio silence as he fought for his life. Unlike Jeremy Renner, who shared pics of his recovery after a near-fatal snowplow accident, Jamie issued only the tersest updates. As a result, rumors spread. “Being quiet, sometimes things get out of hand,” he acknowledged in the clip. “Some people are saying I was blind, but as you can see the eyes are working just fine. They said I was paralyzed — I’m not paralyzed.” 

Now admitting he’s been “to hell and back,” Jamie is determined to get back to work. “A lot of people and projects are depending on him,” notes the insider (he has seven films in the pipeline). “But he’s pacing himself. He’s sticking to the program that’s been drawn up by his doctors.”

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