Glenn Gordon Caron Says Bruce Willis Isn’t ‘Totally Verbal’ But ‘He’s Still Bruce’ Amid Dementia Battle

When Glenn Gordon Caron’s comedy-drama TV series Moonlighting, which ran from 1985 to 1989, cast Bruce Willis as David Addison Jr., he was just approaching his 30th birthday. Willis only had a few acting credits, but he was able to outperform more than 3,000 other contenders for the part.

That part—his first lead role—would ultimately make Willis famous. The following five years saw him win an Emmy for Outstanding Lead Actor in a Drama (2 nominations), a People’s Choice Award for Favorite Male TV Performer (3 nominations), and a Golden Globe for Best Actor in a TV Series (4 nominations).

In the following three decades, Willis would grow to be one of Hollywood’s most adored and sought-after actors. He was everywhere, and his films were consistently successful, from the Die Hard franchise to In Country (1989), Pulp Fiction (1994), Armageddon (1998), The Sixth Sense (1999), and Unbreakable (2000).

Things now appear to be a little bit different. Bruce Willis, who turned 68 in May, received aphasia and frontotemporal dementia diagnoses in March 2022 and February 2023, respectively. Fans, friends, and most importantly his family have been there for him as his condition gets worse.

The 69-year-old writer, director, and producer still keeps in touch with his old friend, Bruce, despite the fact that it has been almost 40 years since they first collaborated. In fact, he tries to visit him once a month and recently spoke with him about Moonlighting, which is currently streaming on Hulu.

“I know he’s really happy that the show is going to be available for people, even though he can’t tell me that,” Caron said in an interview with the New York Post – adding that he has been in touch with Bruce throughout that process. “When I got to spend time with him we talked about it and I know he’s excited.”

Not only does he try to keep in contact with Bruce and his wife, Emma Heming Willis, but he says he has a ‘casual relationship with his three older children’ – Rumer Glenn Willis, 35, Scout LaRue Willis, 32, and Tallulah Belle Willis, 29. “I have tried very hard to stay in his life. He’s an extraordinary person.”

Glenn Gordon Caron Still Trying to Make Sense of Bruce Willis’ Disease

While he admits he isn’t ‘always quite that good’ about visiting as often as he would like, Glenn Gordon Caron makes an honest effort to maintain a presence around Bruce Willis and his family. With that being said, he does admit to struggling to understand his disease and describes it as ‘mindblowing’ to witness.

“The thing that makes [his disease] so mind-blowing is [that] if you’ve ever spent time with Bruce Willis, there is no one who had any more joie de vivre than he. He loved life and … just adored waking up every morning and trying to live life to its fullest,” Gordon Caron says in his interview – the harsh reality of it.

He goes on to explain that, while Bruce usually recognizes him when they do meet, that only lasts a couple of minutes – especially since he has a hard time communicating as his condition worsens. It’s a horrific way to spend the final years of your life, but he has the right support system around him always.

“ He’s not totally verbal; he used to be a voracious reader — he didn’t want anyone to know that — and he’s not reading now. All those language skills are no longer available to him, and yet he’s still Bruce,” Gordon Caron said – adding his ‘joie de vivre is gone,’ but he’s ‘Bruce and you’re grateful that he’s there.’

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