It’s good news for any actor when his new series gets picked up for an entire season, but when that actor is Patrick Swayze, who announced in March that he had been diagnosed with pancreatic cancer, it’s something else entirely.

According to a statement released over the weekend, A&E has decided to pick up Patrick’s FBI drama The Beast for a full 13-episode season, and more importantly, that the actor had been cleared to return to work on the show he’d begun shooting only weeks before going public with his cancer bombshell.

Though Patrick made no mention of his physical condition, he did release a statement about how excited he is to play the part of a rogue FBI agent in the show that is set to hit the small screen in early 2009.

"I have searched for quite a long time to find a character that is this multilayered, unpredictable and downright entertaining as well as a project this current and cutting-edged," explained the 55-year-old, who has spent the last several months receiving treatment at Stanford University Medical Center. "I can’t wait to get to work on this."

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