Friends star Matthew Perry prayed “every night” for Bruce Willis leading up to his death amid the “Die Hard” actor’s battle with the neurodegenerative disorder frontotemporal dementia via New York Times.
The “Friends” alum, who died at age 54 on Oct. 28, looked back on his first meeting with Willis, 68, before they starred together in 2000’s “The Whole Nine Yards” in his 2022 memoir, “Friends, Lovers, and the Big Terrible Thing.”
Their working relationship began with an amusing message that Willis left on Perry’s answering machine.
” ‘Matthew, this is Bruce Willis. Call me back, or I’ll burn your house down and break both your knees and arms and you’ll be left with just the stubs for hands and feet for the rest of your life.’ Click, dial tone. I figured this was a call I should probably return,” Perry recalled.
A few days later, the pair met at Italian restaurant Ago in Hollywood. Naturally, Willis “did not disappoint” and “oozed A-list” in Perry’s eyes.
“He didn’t just take over a room, he was the room. In fact, I knew he was a real movie star when the first thing he did was teach the bartender how to make the perfect vodka tonic. ‘Three-second pour,’ he said to the petrified man,” the “Fools Rush In” actor wrote. “He was a party; to be near him was invigorating.”
It has been noted that Willis was 44 at the time and newly separated from Demi Moore, according to Perry.
After dinner, they went back to Willis’ “massive house off Mulholland” and hit “golf balls into the San Fernando Valley below” with “drinks in hand.”
“We had begun a friendship, one in which we drank together and made each other laugh and complimented each other’s swings . . . Nothing seemed to bother Bruce, no one said no to him. This was, indeed, the A-leagues,” Perry added.
The veteran actor would call Perry again to screen his next movie. “Sick and hungover” Perry, however, made “excuses” as to why he couldn’t swing by.
“I asked him what the movie was called, so I could catch it later,” he wrote. ” ‘The Sixth Sense,’ he said.”
The two would go on to star together in “The Whole Nine Yards.” They flew on Willis’ plane to Montreal to start filming and stayed at the InterContinental hotel.