Bruce Willis, best known for his starring role in the Die Hard movies, has decided to step back from his acting career after being diagnosed with the brain disorder, aphasia.
Aphasia is a condition that affects a person’s ability to speak and write, and is usually caused by damage to the left side of the brain.
The actor’s family, including wife Emma Heming-Willis and ex-wife Demi Moore, announced his condition on Instagram on Wednesday.
“With much consideration, Bruce is stepping away from the career that has meant so much to him,” the family said in a statement.
“This is a really challenging time for our family and we are so appreciative of your continued love, compassion and support,” they added.
“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.
“As Bruce always says, ‘Live it up’ and together we plan to do just that.”
Willis’s acting career began in the early 1980s. He first starred in the ABC TV series Moonlighting.
The 67-year-old became best known for his role as John McClane in the Die Hard movies and went on to act in The Sixth Sense, Armageddon and Pulp Fiction.
What is aphasia?
Aphasia is a medical condition that is caused by damage to parts of the brain responsible for language, according to the US government’s National Institute on Deafness and Other Communication Disorders.
About 1 million people in the US have the disorder. Anybody can develop aphasia, but most who are impacted are middle-aged or older.
“Most often, the cause of the brain injury is a stroke,” the institute says.
“Other causes of brain injury are severe blows to the head, brain tumors, gunshot wounds, brain infections, and progressive neurological disorders, such as Alzheimer’s disease.”