Born: 19 March 1955
Birthplace: Idar-Oberstein, Germany
Best known as: The star of the Die Hard movie series
Name at birth: Walter Willison
Bruce Willis hit it big in Hollywood as the scrappy action hero John McClane in the 1988 terrorists-in-the-skyscraper film Die Hard. He has since built an unusual film career made up of 65% fast-action tough guys and 35% quirky character roles. Bruce Willis grew up in New Jersey and began acting in college. He partnered with Cybill Shepherd in the offbeat TV detective romance Moonlighting (1985-89), which made him a TV star. During the show's run he made the leap to the big screen, starring in Blind Date with Kim Basinger before taking his turn as disillusioned cop John McClane in Die Hard. The film was a smashing success and spawned three sequels, Die Hard 2: Die Harder (1990), Die Hard With A Vengeance (1995, with Samuel L. Jackson), and Live Free or Die Hard (2007). Willis followed up his Die Hard success with action films good and bad (including the notorious 1991 flop Hudson Hawk), and his 12-year marriage to Demi Moore was constant fodder for the gossip sheets. He has made a habit of taking smaller character parts as well as leading roles, including a much-appreciated appearance in Pulp Fiction (1994, with Ving Rhames) and a turn as a small-town businessman in Nobody's Fool (also 1994, opposite Paul Newman). Bruce Willis has a reputation for keeping busy, and his other films include: 12 Monkeys (1995, co-starring Brad Pitt); two M. Night Shyamalan movies, The Sixth Sense (1999) and Unbreakable (2000); Bandits (2001, with Billy Bob Thornton); Hart's War (2002, with Colin Farrell; Hostage (2005); Frank Miller's Sin City (2005, with Jessica Alba); 16 Blocks (2006, with Mos Def); the animated comedy Over the Hedge (2006, also with the voice of Steve Carell); the semi-geriatric spy adventure Red (2010, with Helen Mirren); and the gambling caper Lay The Favorite (2012, with Vince Vaughn).
Bruce Willis married model Emma Heming on 21 March 2009. It was Willis’s second marriage, Heming’s first. He was 54 and she 30 at the time of the wedding… Bruce Willis and Demi Moore were married from 1987-2000. They have three daughters together: Rumer Glenn (b. 1988), Scout LaRue (b. 1991), and Tallulah Belle (b. 1994). Scout is reportedly named for the youthful heroine of the book To Kill a Mockingbird… Bruce Willis recorded two blues albums in the 1980s, when he went by the musical nickname “Bruno”: The Return of Bruno (1987) and If It Don’t Kill You, It Just Makes You Stronger (1989). He sings at times with his backup band, The Accelerators… Bruce Willis was born in Germany, where his father was an American soldier. His mother, Marlene, was a German national.
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