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TV viewers may have caught Regina King in a new TV movie this month, but most people are unaware of her inspiration: the actress signed up to appear in the film to pay tribute to the five women in her life who have won and lost breast cancer battles.

Living Proof – which went to air on Lifetime on Saturday, October 18 – told the true story of doctor Dennis Slamon, who developed ground-breaking breast cancer drug Herperin. Also appearing were Harry Connick Jr. and Trudie Styler.

“I knew pretty much about breast cancer and the statistics,” King told “I have five women that have been in my life that have been affected by breast cancer, so I would say that it’s close to home. Three of them are survivors and two of them weren’t. I would say that it’s close to home for everyone, unfortunately… The reality and the seriousness of that didn’t make it hard for my heart to think of the women I know who battled with the disease and the children who were left behind by those women who died. All of that was right in my heart. It’s just really tapping into that.”

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