Bruce Willis is stepping away from acting after being diagnosed with aphasia, a cogitive disorder that affects one’s ability to communicate. Willis’ family shared the news Wednesday on Instagram.
“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 message begins. “As a result of this and with much consideration Bruce is stepping away from the career that has meant so much to him.”
The actor is 67.
According to the Mayo Clinic, aphasia “is a condition that robs you of the ability to communicate. It can affect your ability to speak, write and understand language, both verbal and written.” It is most commonly caused by a stroke, but can also result from a head injury, a tumor, an infection or a degenerative process.
Willis’ family did not indicate the cause of the actor’s condition or his prognosis. “This is a really challenging time for our family and we are so appreciative of your continued love, compassion and support,” they said in their statement. “We are moving through this as a strong family unit, and wanted to bring his fans in because we know how much he means to you, as you do to him.”
The note ends with a message of hope and love from Willis’ family: “As Bruce always says, ‘Live it up’ and together we plan to do just that. Love, Emma, Demi, Rumer, Scout, Tallulah, Mabel, & Evelyn.”
Willis first broke out on the ABC series “Moonlighting” before he made the transition to movie star with 1988’s “Die Hard,” which was followed by notable performances in films ranging from “Pulp Fiction” to “The Sixth Sense” to “12 Monkeys.”
Recently, Willis’ career had trended towards more direct-to-video films though he still made time for noteworthy theatrical releases like 2019’s “Glass,” in which he reprised his role from M. Night Shyamalan’s 2000 film “Unbreakable.”