Bruce Willis: Die Hard star retiring from acting due to aphasia diagnosis

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Bruce Willis

Bruce Willis is retiring from acting due to a condition which causes difficulties with language or speech, his daughter has said.

Rumer Willis revealed that the Die Hard star, 67, had been diagnosed with aphasia, which she said is “impacting his cognitive abilities”.

Her Instagram post said: “As a result of this and with much consideration Bruce is stepping away from the career that has meant so much to him.”

The message, addressed to “Bruce’s amazing supporters”, ended on an upbeat note: “As Bruce always says, ‘Live it up’ and together we plan to do just that”.

The statement was signed by Willis’ wife, Emma Heming Willis, his ex-wife Demi Moore, and his five children, Rumer, Scout, Tallulah, Mabel and Evelyn.

“It’s usually caused by damage to the left side of the brain (for example, after a stroke),” the NHS definition says.

It affects “the four main ways people understand and use language”, in other words reading, listening, speaking and typing or writing.

Head trauma, brain tumors or infections can also cause aphasia, the National Aphasia Association said on its website.

Bruce Willis with his wife Emma Heming Willis

It is not clear what led to Willis’ diagnosis.

Head trauma, brain tumors or infections can also cause aphasia, the National Aphasia Association said on its website.


WHAT IS APHASIA?

Aphasia is a condition that affects sufferers’ cognitive abilities with the most obvious problems in speech.
People with aphasia may make mistakes with the words they use, perhaps using the wrong word, using the wrong sounds in a word, or putting words together incorrectly.
Most people with aphasia have some trouble with their speaking, and a mixture of issues with writing, reading and perhaps listening.
Speech and language therapy is the main type of treatment for people with aphasia.
In some cases, it can lead to isolation, anxiety and depression.
A stroke is the most common cause of aphasia, but it can also result from a severe head injury, a brain tumour or progressive neurological conditions, such as dementia.
Aphasia can affect people of all ages, but it’s most common in those aged over 65. Source: NHS/National Aphasia Association

It is not clear what led to Willis’ diagnosis.

Willis came to national attention alongside Cybill Shepherd in the 1980s TV hit, Moonlighting.

His first big movie role was as John McClane in the smash hit Die Hard in 1988 and he went on to star in Pulp Fiction, 12 Monkeys and The Sixth Sense.

His four-decade career, spanning around 100 films, has amassed more than £3.8 billion ($5) at the box office worldwide.

He has won one Golden Globe Award and two Emmys.

Willis has several movie projects in post-production, including Vendetta, Fortress: Sniper’s Eye and White Elephant while Fortress 3 is currently in pre-production. – Sky News