Bruce Willis has learned to “laugh” at himself.
The 58-year-old actor is one of the biggest names in Hollywood, but has realized he shouldn’t be too serious about his life. When Bruce was asked what he wished he had known at 18, the star admits he needed to loosen up.
“I have learned to laugh at myself. I wish I had known how important that was at 18. I still take work seriously — but not the rest of it,” he told British newspaper The Sun. “At 18, I had it all to do. I was a security guard in New Jersey and had to take all kinds of jobs to put myself through acting classes. And that’s how it stayed for year after year…
“But don’t let anyone tell you that acting is a hard job. A hard job is putting in windshields in a factory for 20 years. Or going to a job you hate, day after day, to put food on the table and a roof over your head.”
It took Bruce some time to make it as an actor. While he was struggling to land roles, he confessed it was hard not to envy his peers.
“The toughest aspect of acting for me was watching others make the big-time when I was out of work. I would think: ‘I know them — they are not so hot,’” he recalled. “Jealousy is dangerous. It eats away at you and can destroy friendship and careers in an instant.
“Acting was my only drug. I would walk around theatres on Broadway, New York, and just breathe in the atmosphere. I always wanted to be up there, on stage. Fame and money did not really come into it.”
He finally found success with a role in the popular TV show Moonlighting and his career took off. Bruce hasn’t always remained grounded and is amazed to still be finding regular work in Hollywood so many years later.
“I went off the rails a little when it all started. Who wouldn’t? A little craziness never does anyone too much harm. It makes you appreciate the good times,” he smiled. “Have I been conscious of age and the passing years? More than most, because I didn’t have a bean until I was nearly 30. Sometimes, I just have to think how far I have come and what has happened.
“To have not been thrown out of town has been my greatest achievement so far.”
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