Bruce Willis has dementia his family announces BBC

Bruce Willis has dementia, his family announces

  • By Rachel Russel
  • BBC News

February 16, 2023

Updated 48 minutes ago

Image source, Getty Images

picture description,

Bruce Willis at the 2019 New York Film Festival

Actor Bruce Willis has frontotemporal dementia, his family has announced.

In a statement on social media, they said it was a “relief to finally have a clear diagnosis.”

The 67-year-old was diagnosed with aphasia in the spring of last year, which leads to speech difficulties. However, this had progressed and he received a more specific diagnosis, the family said.

They expressed their “deepest gratitude for the incredible outpouring of love”.

The family went on to say that frontotemporal dementia is the most common form of dementia in people under the age of 60.

“Today, there are no treatments for the disease, a reality that we hope will change in the years to come,” the statement said.

Willis became a household name in the 1980s and 90s after starring in blockbusters like Die Hard, The Sixth Sense, Armageddon and Pulp Fiction.

He’s also been nominated for five Golden Globes – winning one for Moonlighting – and also three Emmys, where he won two.

But his family said last year Willis was giving up acting because his aphasia was affecting his cognitive abilities.

Thursday’s new statement said they hoped the media attention would raise awareness of the actor’s condition.

It said: “Bruce has always believed in using his voice in the world to help others and raise awareness of important issues both publicly and privately.

“We know in our hearts that if he could today, he would want to respond by bringing global attention and a connection to those who are also dealing with this debilitating disease and how it affects so many people and their families. “

The statement was signed by members of Willis’ family, including his wife Emma Heming – with whom he has two daughters – and his former wife Demi Moore and their three daughters.

US journalist Maria Shriver, a prominent activist for the care and research of patients with brain disease, tweeted: “My heart goes out to Bruce Willis and his family and also my gratitude for they shed some much needed light on this disease.

“When people step forward, it helps all of us. When people get a diagnosis, it’s extremely difficult, but also a relief for most to get a diagnosis.”

Aaron Paul, who starred in America’s Breaking Bad TV crime drama, said Willis was “such a bloody legend,” adding, “I love you so much my friend!”

US singer and actress Queen Latifah wrote in a post on Instagram: “God bless you my brother, we love you!!! all the best. Thank you and your family for all the entertainment!!!”

Actress Selma Blair, who has multiple sclerosis, simply wrote, “Sending love.”

Frontotemporal dementia is an “unusual” form of the disease that causes problems with behavior and language for those affected, according to the UK NHS website.

Symptoms also include slow or stiff movements, loss of bladder or bowel control — although this tends to come later — and muscle weakness.