Skip to comments.Bruce Willis comes out fighting for Iraq's forgotten GI heroes
Posted on 11/27/2005 9:27:04 AM PST by Khankrumthebulgar
ANGERED by negative portrayals of the conflict in Iraq, Bruce Willis, the Hollywood star, is to make a pro-war film in which American soldiers will be depicted as brave fighters for freedom and democracy.
It will be based on the exploits of the heavily decorated members of Deuce Four, the 1st Battalion, 24th Infantry, which has spent the past year battling insurgents in the northern Iraqi town of Mosul.
Willis attended Deuce Four’s homecoming ball this month in Seattle, Washington, where the soldiers are on leave, along with Stephen Eads, the producer of Armageddon and The Sixth Sense.
The 50-year-old actor said that he was in talks about a film of “these guys who do what they are asked to for very little money to defend and fight for what they consider to be freedom”.
Unlike many Hollywood stars Willis supports the war and recently offered a $1m (about £583,000) bounty for the capture of any of Al-Qaeda’s most wanted leaders such as Osama Bin Laden, Ayman Al-Zawahiri or Abu Musab al- Zarqawi, its commander in Iraq. Willis visited the war zone with his rock and blues band, the Accelerators, in 2003.
“I am baffled to understand why the things I saw happening in Iraq are not being reported,” he told MSNBC, the American news channel.
He is expected to base the film on the writings of the independent blogger Michael Yon, a former special forces green beret who was embedded with Deuce Four and sent regular dispatches about their heroics.
Yon was at the soldiers’ ball with Willis, who got to know him through his internet war reports on www.michaelyon.blogspot.com. “What he is doing is something the American media and maybe the world media isn’t doing,” the actor said, “and that’s telling the truth about what’s happening in the war in Iraq.”
Willis is likely to take on the role of the unit’s commander, Lieutenant-Colonel Erik Kurilla, 39, a Bruce Willis lookalike with a chest full of medals, more hair than Willis and a glamorous blonde wife.
He was injured in August after being shot three times by insurgents “in front of my eyes”, Yon recorded in his blog: “He continued to direct his men until a medic gave him morphine and the men took him away.”
Kurilla now has a titanium plate in his leg. He met Willis at the ball and said that his men were “very excited and appreciative that he was there”. ”
Deuce Four has a chequered history. For decades it was a segregated black unit commanded by a white officer. It was disbanded in 1951 but veterans felt hurt that its past was considered to be a stain on the army and it was revived in the mid-1990s.
When the battalion arrived in Mosul in November last year the city was under threat from insurgents. “We faced very heavy fighting for about three months,” Kurilla recalled. “Every patrol was making contact with enemy forces. We would hit them where they slept, where they worked and where they ate.”
Today the picture was very different, he said. “I have watched a city that was in absolute chaos turn into one that has a viable Iraqi security force, which is taking the lead in fighting the terrorists.”
Yon, 41, went to Iraq after a friend from high school, Scott Helveston, a former navy Seal, was hanged from a bridge in Falluja in an incident that shocked the world. Yon had never blogged before but was the author of Danger Close, a book about his experience as a green beret when he killed a man in a bar-room brawl. He was charged with murder and acquitted on the grounds of self-defence.
“When I landed in Baghdad I was immediately struck by how much of a war zone it was,” Yon said. “Explosions were going off constantly. It was full-on.”
His first experience of Mosul was worse: “I got attacked on my first mission. One of our vehicles got hit with a car bomb and three guys were killed.”
In May, Yon took a photograph of a soldier from the Deuce Four cradling a little Iraqi girl who had been fatally wounded by a suicide bomber. He sensed that the inhabitants of Mosul were turning against the insurgents. “People began to realise that all the insurgents ever did was break things and kill people,” he said. “It started to switch from a firefight to an intelligence war. People started to talk more to us. They would pull us over and give us tips.”
The Iraqi security forces began to take pride in their work, Yon added: “These guys were getting slaughtered but they continued to volunteer and fight. It’s very dangerous now to be a terrorist in Mosul. They’re still out there but it’s not like it was.”
Willis said it would be wrong for Americans to give up on Iraq just as progress is being made. “The Iraqi people want to live in a world where they can move from their homes to the market and not have to fear being killed,” he said. “I mean, doesn’t everybody want that?”
It worked very well for Mel Gibson.
Two gorgeous men.
Thanks a bunch! (OK, so I'm shallow).
If Bruce Willis produces a good movie
I've never seen him in a bad movie. I have to have my Willis fix about 6, 7 times a year at the minimum.
Hollywood needs a conservative "Branson" to start up and give them some real competition.
Imagine pro-American, pro-family films stealing away all the box office.
Military games have to make huge amounts of money. There have to be at least 50 Tom Clancy games out there. I think part of the reason is these games are squad based and with things like X Box live they are a lot more fun to play. You don't even have to actually see your friends to play with them now.
I may have all of you beat. The wife & I haven't been to a theater since 'Dances With Wolves' in 1990. Why give these airheads in Hollywood my hard earned cash?
Today we watch selectively on TV and I buy/copy old movies (mostly Westerns) onto DVD. We don't need today's garbage.
I don't see him playing LTC Kurilla - I think he'd be great as CSM Prosser though.
(click the picture for the full size version)
Tell me that's not a Bruce Willis character standing there over a defeated terrorist.
And he just might make a mint like Mel Gibson did...I think that some people have figured out there a major media market the Hollywood elites abandon a long time ago...
So like Rush did in radio,and Fox did it in news, ...it looks like Mel, Bruce and other like them might do in movies....may the Hollywood left wing elites sink slowly in to the abyss like the old MSM is doing
Robin Williams a conservative??? I must have missed that memo. Please set me straight.
You considering them gorgeous at their age gives hope to
all aging men like me.
In fact I would shave my head like Bruce if it didnt have so many knots on it. lol
Add Jimmie "J.J." Walker to that list. Go to his website: www.dynomitejj.com , and click "JJ's views". Some of his comments are quite FR-worthy.
You drew the line at 25cent admission, huh? : )
Thanks for the link - I'm reading through there, and have to admit that I'm impressed.
GOod for Bruce! He's got enough credibility in Hollywood to get this done, and not suffer too much from it.
Good idea.. Brucie could smoooze some star struck lefty say Katie "the sagging perk" Couric into it.. Would be a masterful stroke.. and HER public outrage after the final cut would insure a good turnout too..
Somehow I don't think Bruce needs the bread.
Deuce Four alumni here