Maria Arena Bell, Y&R's former head writer and EP, battling breast cancer

Posted Friday, October 28, 2022 2:46:57 AM
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More than 250,000 women in the US are diagnosed with breast cancer each year. In a social media post, Maria Arena Bell shared that she is one of those women.

Maria Bell, the former head writer and executive producer of The Young and the Restless, has revealed on social media that she has been battling breast cancer since April.

"19 rounds of radiation DOWN," Bell shared in an Instagram post earlier this month along with a photo of her holding a certificate of honor.

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A post shared by Maria Bell (@mariaarenabell)

Bell also shared some of the unexpected -- and offensive -- battles that women in Hollywood face.

"Working in Hollywood I've seen first hand about how and why we can't talk about [cancer]," Bell added. "[Y]ou'll lose jobs or people will think you're over: I will never forget the Sony exec who wanted to fire one of the Y and R writers for having breast cancer."

Bell encouraged those with cancer to speak up and speak their truth. She also told others, "Don't count me out!"

According to the Center for Disease Control, each year in the United States, about 264,000 cases of breast cancer are diagnosed in women and about 2,400 in men. About 42,000 women and 500 men in the U.S. die each year from breast cancer.

Maria Arena Bell helmed of The Young and the Restless from 2007 through her unexpected release in 2012. She earned a Daytime Emmy as part of the Y&R writing team in 2011. As the show's executive producer, she was nominated every year from 2010 to 2013 in the Outstanding Drama Series category.

Before launching her writing career, Bell worked in the fashion industry. It therefore makes sense that Bell was also a writer and fashion consultant on The Bold and the Beautiful.

Bell is married to William J. Bell, Jr., the son of the late William J. Bell and Lee Phillip Bell, the creators of The Young and the Restless and The Bold and the Beautiful. She is the sister-in-law of Lauralee Bell (Christine Williams, Y&R) and Brad Bell (B&B's head writer and executive producer).

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