Hollywood icon and literal living legend Clint Eastwood turned 93 on Wednesday, marking yet another amazing milestone in a life full of them. And in honor of the “Unforgiven” director’s big day, fellow action star Arnold Schwarzenegger paid tribute in a short but nevertheless touching Instagram post.
“Happy birthday, Clint! You’ve inspired me, you’ve mentored me, and you’re a wonderful friend. At 93, you prove that heroes don’t retire — they reload. You’re a legend,” Schwarzenegger wrote in a message posted along with a recent but undated photo of the pair skiing.
This isn’t the first time Schwarzenegger has used that “heroes don’t retire — they reload,” line. It’s the tagline from his hit Netflix series “Fubar,” but since the line is clearly a pun not only on Schwarzenegger’s aging spy character on the show, it’s also a reference to himself, it’s come in very handy when he’s wanted to say nice things about other aging action stars.
For example, Bruce Willis, who was forced to retire from acting last year due to the onset of a rare form of dementia, was also subject to Schwarzenegger’s admiration. Speaking to Cinemablend recently, Schwarzenegger said of Willis: “I think that he’s fantastic. He was, always for years and years, is a huge, huge star. And I think that he will always be remembered as a great, great star. And a kind man. I understand that under his circumstances, health-wise, that he had to retire. But in general, you know, we never really retire. Action heroes, they reload.”
“Fubar,” which premiered last week on Netflix, is Schwarzenegger’s first television show. It also stars Monica Barbaro (“Top Gun: Maverick”), Jay Baruchel (“Man Seeking Woman”), Fortune Feimster (“The Mindy Project”), Milan Carter (“Dolemite Is My Name”), Travis Van Winkle (“You”), Gabriel Luna (“The Last of Us”), Andy Buckley (“The Office”), Aparna Brielle (“A.P. Bio”), Barbara Eve Harris (“Prison Break”) and Fabiana Udenio (Austin Powers: International Man of Mystery”).