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Legendary Facts About Bruce Willis

Bruce Willis first appeared on TV screens in 1985 as the wisecracking detective David Addison and the audiences found an instant connection with the actor. Bruce’s biggest asset as an actor was the fact that he was relatable in every way, he looked at life the way normal people did and he wasn’t afraid to share that with the world. Bruce brought a lot of the common man to most of the roles he played, most notably to John McClane from the Die Hard series.

It all started during his early years. During his teenage years, Bruce realized that he had a stutter, a problem that easily faded every time he took over the stage and thus, he decided to pursue acting as a career choice. After graduating he took several odd jobs before finally enrolling at Montclair State College to study drama.

However, Willis was in a hurry. He, therefore, dropped out of the drama class and moved to New York to try his luck in Hollywood. After years of struggle and of course, waiting tables, his big break came in 1985 when he beat 3000 actors to get the role of David Addison in TV series Moonlighting, which was not only a hit but also served as the perfect launching platform for Bruce. Hollywood came calling and eventually, Bruce got the chance to play, John McClane, in Die Hard, a role he would continue to reprise again and again for many years to come.

In his 35-year-long career, Bruce Willis has delivered many hot titles, most notably Pulp Fiction, Armageddon, Mercury Rising, Sin City, Die Hard series, The Expendables series, Split and Glass and has won two Primetime Emmy Awards, two People’s Choice Awards and a Golden Globe. In this video, we tell you some legendary facts about Bruce Willis. For instance, did you know that Bruce was the first Hollywood actor to have a video game after him or that he once got a director fired from his job over creative differences? In this video, we tell you more fun facts like these.

Bruce Willis Was Born in Idar-Oberstein, Germany

Bruce Willis’ father David Willis, an American soldier, met his mother Marlene, a German woman from Kassel when he was stationed in West Germany. The two fell in love, got married and had four children — three sons and a daughter. Bruce is their eldest child. Bruce Willis was born on March 19, 1955, in Idar-Oberstein, West Germany. When he was two, David and Marlene moved to the U.S. and the family settled in Carneys Point, New Jersey, where Bruce completed his high school and eventually enrolled to study drama at the Montclair State University but decided to leave the course during his sophomore year.

He Started Acting to Get over His Stutter

Bruce Willis was a happy, confident and outspoken child. However, during his teenage years, he discovered that he had a stutter, which made it difficult for him to interact with other kids. Bruce discussed his stutter with Reader’s Digest. In the interview, he shared that the sole reason he participated in the production of A Connecticut Yankee in King Arthur’s Court during high school was that he realized that every time he was on stage, his stutter completely disappeared and it came back as soon as he got off the stage. Bruce, therefore, decided to pursue acting to see if it could help him get over his stutter in the long term.

He Was a Very Good Bartender

The only way to make it big in Hollywood is to wait patiently for your time to come, and in the meantime, figure out something you enjoy doing and stick to it. Case in point, Bruce Willis and bartending. Willis did his first off-Broadway play — Heaven and Earth — in 1977. He did several small roles thereafter but nothing concrete came his way until 1985. So, how did Bruce manage to sustain himself in New York City? He decided to tend the bar at Chelsea Central in the Upper West Side of New York City. John Goodman, who knows Bruce from his struggle days, said in an interview that Bruce was an excellent bartender, probably the best in New York and could keep people entertained all night.

He Wore Combat Fatigues and Earrings to the Moonlighting Audition

When Bruce Willis auditioned for Moonlighting, he was still a struggling actor with not much to show on his resume. He had done The First Deadly Sin with Frank Sinatra and The Verdict with Paul Newman but both of these roles were quite small. On the other hand, casting for Moonlighting was becoming quite difficult and ABC was planning to chuck the show altogether. Then, Willis auditioned for the role — he dawned a spunky hairdo and wore combat fatigues and earrings to the audition. ABC executives found him bizarre but the show’s creator Glenn Gordon Caron was convinced.

As mentioned before, Bruce’s father’s military upbringing played a key role in defining many of the characters that Bruce played. A part of this upbringing was very much visible even in his portrayal of David Addison. More importantly, this upbringing played a key role in making Bruce align with Republicans instead of Democrats. He was not only a huge supporter of Operation Iraqi Freedom and War on Terror but also once announced $1 million bounties on Saddam Hussein and Osama bin Laden. Surprised? Stay tuned and we will tell you more. Meanwhile, if you are enjoying this video, do not forget to like and subscribe to our channel.

He Charged $5 Million for

Die Hard

Moonlighting opened the doors of Hollywood for the actor. The film that changed his life completely came in 1988: Die Hard. The role was offered to several major stars, including Sylvester Stallone, Arnold Schwarzenegger and Clint Eastwood, all of whom had turned it down. In the end, Fox offered the role to Bruce Willis and agreed to pay the actor $5 million in fees. This was big news since even major stars like Tom Cruise and Michael J. Fox took $3 million for a picture at the time. However, the role wasn’t easy to play. Director John McTiernan wanted the film to have many action-packed sequences. Unfortunately, during the famous ‘table scene’ where McClane shoots under the table to kill one of the bad guys was so loud that Bruce ended up losing two-third of his hearing.

Hudson Hawk

 Was Based on a Song

After Die Hard, Bruce Willis became one of the hottest stars in Hollywood and studios knew they could bet their money on him. However, in 1991, Bruce did the mistake of doing Hudson Hawk, a film about a music-loving jewel thief chosen to steal from the Vatican. The film tanked at the box office. Not many people that Hudson Hawk was actually based on a 1981 song written by Robert Kraft. Robert had shared the song with Willis while he was still a bartender and the two had continued to develop into a film over the years.

He Was the First Hollywood Actor to Have His Video Game

Die Hard was the beginning of Bruce’s journey towards one of Hollywoods’s biggest action stars. Bruce followed Die Hard with films like Armageddon and The Fifth Element, which further cemented his position as a global action star. Companies wanted to cash on the popularity of Bruce and thus, when the Apocalypse video game was under production, Bruce was offered the role of the main character’s sidekick. However, the actor denied and instead asked to play the lead. The main character was therefore designed after Bruce Willis, making the actor one of the first Hollywood actors to have his video game character. Bruce also provided the voice for this character.

He Also Had His Own Cartoon

In 1987, Bruce Willis had released his first album called The Return of Bruno. Bruno was actually Willis’ nickname while growing up. The album featured big names like The Temptations and Ruth Pointer and was mediocrely successful. In 1996, Bruce Willis decided to expand the Bruno franchise by lending his voice to Bruno the Kid, a syndicated animated series that lasted a single season. The series was about an 11-year-old spy kid.

He Once Got a Director He Disagreed with Fired from His Job

In 1997, Bruce Willis began working on a romantic comedy called Broadway Brawler. However, within only three weeks, Bruce began to have creative differences with the film’s director, cinematographer and wardrobe designer. He used his power as the executive film’s executive producer to fire everyone he disagreed with. Unfortunately, the problems persisted even after studio Cinergi replaced the director. The studio, thereafter, decided to shut down the film. It asked Willis to agree to star in three films to make up for the production cost. These three films were Armageddon, The Sixth Sense and The Kid.

He Put a Bounty on Saddam Hussein and Osama Bin Laden

Though Willis has managed to stay away from active politics, he has made his stances and preferences clear by supporting Republican candidates such as Fred Thompson and George W. Bush in the past. During Operation Iraqi Freedom and War on Terror, Willis was quite open in his support to the operations. He even declared two bounties — one on Saddam Hussein and the other on Osama Bin Laden. In an interview, he made it clear that he had originally wanted to offer the award to the military. However, since the military personnel aren’t allowed to receive awards, he had decided to open the award to civilians.

Bruce Willis changed the idea of an action hero. Before Bruce Hollywood’s action heroes were idiosyncratic musclebound and serious men who lacked humour and spunk. Bruce changed all of that and now it’s impossible to imagine Hollywood without this megastar. What are some of your favourite Bruce Willis films? Did you enjoy this video? Is there anything you would like to add to it? If yes, please leave a comment. Meanwhile, do not forget to like and subscribe to our channel and press the bell icon to stay updated on all our latest videos.

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