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March 30, 2022

End of an Era: Bruce Willis Is "Stepping Away" from Acting, Due to Brain Disease Aphasia

So he's stepping away from acting due to a progressive neurological disease, but Joe Biden is going to keep on presidenting, huh?

John McClane has finally gotten too old for this shit.

I know that McClane never said that but I'm doing a thing.

Bruce Willis is "stepping away" from acting after he was diagnosed with aphasia.

The actor's daughter, Rumer Willis, shared the news on behalf of the entire family on her Instagram on Wednesday.

"To Bruce's amazing supporters, as a family we wanted to share that our beloved Bruce has been experiencing some health issues and has recently been diagnosed with aphasia, which is impacting his cognitive abilities," the caption on a photo of the actor reads. "As a result of this and with much consideration Bruce is stepping away from the career that has meant so much to him."


Aphasia is a language disorder caused by damage in a specific area of the brain that controls language expression and comprehension. Aphasia leaves a person unable to communicate effectively with others and is frequently the result of a stroke, according to Johns Hopkins Medical Center.

In other words, Willis is recovering from a "childhood stutter." That's what the leftwing propaganda corporations call it, right?

Thanks to lowandslow for the sad news.

RedLetterMedia had just talked about Bruce Willis appearing in a dozen straight-to-RedBox "movies" in the past couple of years. Movies in which he gets paid $2 million or so just to show up for two days for a short cameo.

He didn't appear to bother learning the short script given to him; he had his lines read to him through a visible earpiece radio.

A lot of scenes are just shot in front of a greenscreen. In one case, the RedLetterMedia guys think that another actor was dubbing Bruce Willis.


They did this episode after having read about "The King of the Geezer Teasers," a producer who pays aging stars $1 or $2 million for a day or two of work for his low-budget movies. They just want to show Bruce Willis, John Cusack, John Travolta, Nick Cage, Al Pacino or Robert DeNiro in a trailer and put their name on the top of the video box.

On Wednesday, January 13, Randall Emmett presided over a crime scene near one of America's few tropical rain forests in Trujillo Alto, Puerto Rico. Robert De Niro, dressed as a small-town Georgia sheriff, emerged from a sun-faded mobile home and walked solemnly past a black van marked CORONER, looking like a man uneasy about the ordeal ahead of him. In Wash Me in the River, the feature film Emmett had just started shooting, that ordeal was to pursue a recovering opioid addict exacting revenge on the drug dealers he holds responsible for his fiancée's death. Off-camera, De Niro's ordeal was no less daunting -- somehow, the great actor had to keep Hollywood's worst filmmaker from ruining the movie they'd set out to make together.

Emmett, who is 50, has directed just one other film, which has yet to be released. But as a producer, his credits include more than 110 movies, which have grossed in excess of $1.2 billion, most of them bad enough to require a category all their own. Among these, a few are impressively dreadful, like Neil LaBute's 2006 remake of The Wicker Man, starring Nicholas Cage; others are the forgettable detritus of a bygone era, like the 2007 thriller 88 Minutes, which marked a low point for both Al Pacino's acting career and the use of cell phones as a plot device; most, however, are cheap paint-by-numbers action flicks such as Survive the Night, with Bruce Willis; Mercenary for Justice, starring Steven Seagal; and Backtrace, which brought Sylvester Stallone and Matthew Modine together for one of cinema's more improbable partnerships.

Such a bleak filmography would seem an unlikely lure for collaborators like De Niro and John Malkovich, who also appears in Wash Me in the River. But over a career spanning more than two decades, Emmett has made a fortune producing bad movies; that he has done so while pissing off investors, directors, and screenwriters -- and, arguably, misleading audiences -- hardly matters in Hollywood, where feature films have become increasingly difficult to finance and box-office receipts recently approached a 40-year low. There's a crude, blunt brilliance to Emmett's filmmaking formula: Accept money from just about anyone willing to hand it over, offer vast sums of it to an aging star for a day or two of work, then leverage that actor's name to presell the movie in foreign markets. Along the way, forgo union writers and directors whenever possible, keep shooting days to a minimum, and film on location in places like Puerto Rico, where the local government offers filmmakers tax credits that can be sold on the open market for 90 cents on the dollar. Ugliness, after all, is excusable in Hollywood, where Harvey Weinstein was sheltered for decades by his power and ability to make people money; in Weinstein's absence, it remains the kind of town where even auteurs like Martin Scorsese will rub elbows with Emmett, producer of Private Valentine: Blonde & Dangerous, as long as it helps them get a movie made.

Here's how Emmet got his start:

For those old enough to remember his early days in Hollywood, Emmett is still Mark Wahlberg's former personal assistant, the hard-partying hanger-on who helped inspire the character Turtle on HBO's Entourage.

After that episode, the RedLetterMedia guys did a semi-apologetic update when a bunch of commenters told them that there was a rumor that Willis had a degenerative brain disease and was just cranking out as much crap as possible before quitting acting. And I guess that explains the earpiece, and his limited engagement with the thin scripts.

Apparently those rumors are true. I wonder if the family confirmed the rumors due to RedLetterMedia inadvertently giving them a larger platform than they previously had.

As RedLetterMedia observed, when Willis retires from acting, no one will remember this crap he pumped out at the end of his career. People will only remember Die Hard and Pulp Fiction, so no great harm.

I wonder how long this has been going on -- Willis has been known for phoning in performances for years. Maybe he just got too rich to care. Maybe, like Mickey Rourke, he began to feel that acting was a very "feminine" kind of occupation and just was turned off by it.

Bonus: A Bruce Willis rarity, the original ending of Die Hard with a Vengeance (Die Hard 3).


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posted by Ace at 01:20 PM

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