BRUCE WILLIS (David Dunn) has demonstrated incredible
versatility in a career that has included such diverse characterizations as the
prizefighter in Quentin Tarantino's Pulp Fiction (1994 Palme D'Or winner at
Cannes), the philandering contractor in Robert Benton's Nobody's Fool, the
heroic time traveler in Terry Gilliam's 12 Monkeys, the traumatized Vietnam
veteran in Norman Jewison's In Country, the compassionate child psychologist in
M. Night Shyamalan's Oscar-nominated The Sixth Sense (for which he won the
People's Choice Award) and his signature role, Detective John McClane, in the
Die Hard pentalogy.
Following studies at Montclair State College's prestigious theater program,
the New Jersey native honed his craft in several stage plays and countless
television commercials, before landing the leading role in Sam Shepard's 1984
stage drama Fool for Love, a run which lasted for 100 performances off-Broadway.
Willis next won international stardom and several acting awards, including
Primetime Emmy and Golden Globe awards, for his starring role as private eye
David Addison on the hit television series Moonlighting, winning the role over
3,000 other contenders. At the same time, he made his motion picture debut
opposite Kim Basinger in Blake Edwards' romantic comedy Blind Date.
In 1988, he originated the role of John McClane in the blockbuster film Die
Hard, one of the highest-grossing releases of that year. He later reprised the
character in four sequels: Die Hard: Die Harder (1990), Die Hard: With A
Vengeance (1995's global box-office champ), Live Free, Die Hard (one of the
box-office hits of summer 2007) and a Good Day To Die Hard (2013).
His wide array of film roles includes collaborations with such respected and
prolific filmmakers including Wes Anderson (Moonrise Kingdom), Michael Bay
(Armageddon), M. Night Shyamalan (The Sixth Sense, Unbreakable), Alan Rudolph
(Mortal Thoughts, Breakfast of Champions), Walter Hill (Last Man Standing),
Robert Benton (Billy Bathgate, Nobody's Fool), Rob Reiner (The Story of Us),
Edward Zwick (The Siege), Luc Besson (The Fifth Element), Barry Levinson
(Bandits, What Just Happened, Rock the Kasbah), Terry Gilliam (12 Monkey's),
Quentin Tarintino (Pulp Fiction), Robert Zemeckis (Death Becomes Her) and Robert
Rodriguez (Sin City, Grind House).
Other motion picture credits include Red, The Jackal, Mercury Rising, Hart's
War, The Whole Nine Yards (and its sequel The Whole Ten Yards), The Kid, Tears
of the Sun, Hostage, 16 Blocks, Alpha Dog, Lucky Number Slevin, Perfect
Stranger, Looper and Moonrise Kingdom. He also voiced the character of the
wise-cracking infant Mikey in Look Who's Talking and Look Who's Talking Too as
well as the lead characters RJ & Spike in the animated hit features Over the
Hedge and Rugrats Go Wild!
In addition to his work before the cameras, Willis made his Broadway debut
last year as the author Paul Sheldon who's tormented by one of his readers
(played by Laurie Metcalf) in a new stage adaptation of Stephen King's novel,
Misery. He established his interest in theater when in 1997 he co-founded A
Company of Fools, a non-profit theater troupe committed to developing and
sustaining stage work in the Wood River Valley of Idaho, and throughout the U.S.
He starred in and directed a staging of Sam Shepard's dark comedy True West at
the Liberty Theater in Hailey, Idaho. The play, which depicts the troubled
relationship between two brothers, was aired on Showtime and dedicated to
Willis' late brother Robert.
An accomplished musician as well, Willis recorded the 1986 Motown album The
Return of Bruno, which went platinum and contained the No. 5 Billboard hit
"Respect Yourself." Three years later, he recorded a second album If It Don't
Kill You, It Just Makes You Stronger. In 2002, he launched a U.S. club tour with
his musical group, Bruce Willis and the Blues Band and he traveled to Iraq to
play for U.S. servicemen.
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