The family of Hollywood legend Bruce Willis has announced that the actor has been diagnosed with a rare form of dementia less than a year after he retired following an aphasia diagnosis. The condition impacts cognitive abilities and causes difficulty with speech and the ability to interpret what others are saying. In a statement shared with The Association for Frontotemporal Degeneration, his family explained that the 67-year-old’s condition has since progressed.
The statement read:
“As a family, we wanted to take this opportunity to thank you all for the outpouring of love and compassion for Bruce over the past ten months. Your generosity of spirit has been overwhelming, and we are tremendously grateful for it. For your kindness, and because we know you love Bruce as much as we do, we wanted to give you an update. Since we announced Bruce’s diagnosis of aphasia in spring 2022, Bruce’s condition has progressed and we now have a more specific diagnosis: frontotemporal dementia (known as FTD). Unfortunately, challenges with communication are just one symptom of the disease Bruce faces. While this is painful, it is a relief to finally have a clear diagnosis.”
FTD is a less common type of dementia and its most noticeable symptoms are changes in personality, behavior and sometimes difficulties with language. In the powerful statement, his family highlighted that the actor “always believed in using his voice in the world to help others, and to raise awareness about important issues both publicly and privately.” They went on to add that Willis would want to raise attention to FTD if he was able to in a bid to educate people on the impacts of it both on the person diagnosed and their family members. The movie star’s daughter Rumer Willis also shared an image of her father smiling whilst standing on a beach.
In spite of the heartbreaking diagnosis, Willis‘ impact on Hollywood continues to carry his legacy forward. With over four decades of films under his belt and well over a hundred projects in his repertoire, it’s hardly surprising the actor boasts a host of accolades including a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame and multiple Primetime Emmy Awards. The actor catapulted onto screens back in the 1980s and there was no stopping him with a reel of treasured ventures to his name including his role as John McClane in action epic Die Hard, sci-fi hits The Fifth Element and Armageddon, 1994 crime-drama Pulp Fiction and horror-thriller hit The Sixth Sense. In a perfect nod to his impressive career as an action hero, among Willis’ final projects are the final chapter in the Detective Knight trilogy following the release of Detective Knight: Independence and his upcoming sci-fi epic Assassin.
You can see Rumer‘s Instagram post below and read the full statement here.