Retired American actor Bruce Willis is struggling with communication while battling frontotemporal dementia, his friend and “Moonlighting” creator Glenn Gordon Caron confirmed.
Caron made the statement while discussing the popular 1980s television show, which is now 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 told The New York Post.
“The process has taken quite a while and Bruce’s disease is a progressive disease, so I was able to communicate with him before the disease rendered him as incommunicative as he is now.”
The “Die Hard’ and “Pulp Fiction” star stepped away from acting in March 2022 after being diagnosed with aphasia that has since progressed to frontotemporal dementia (FTD).
FTD is caused by damage to neurons in the frontal and temporal lobes of the brain, according to the National Institutes of Health. Some symptoms may include emotional problems, trouble communicating, or difficulty walking.
Despite his current health challenges, Caron said Bruce is “still Bruce.”
“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,” Caron said. “All those language skills are no longer available to him, and yet he’s still Bruce.”
Caron added that he still tries to see Willis every month or so “I have tried very hard to stay in his life. He’s an extraordinary person.”