Bruce Willis' wife pleads with paparazzi not to 'yell' at him following dementia diagnosis

Bruce Willis and his wife Emma Heming Willis. Credit: AP

By Daniel Boal, ITV News Multimedia Producer

Bruce Willis' wife, Emma Heming Willis, has taken to social media to beg paparazzi to keep their distance from the 'Die Hard' star following his dementia diagnosis.

Making the emotional plea on her Instagram page, she said "there's still a lot of education that needs to be put forth" about people living with dementia.

She conceded that while photographers may just be doing their job, she asked if they would "keep their space".

"This one is going out to the photographers and the video people that are trying to get those exclusives of my husband out and about: just keep your space,” she said in the clip.

“I know this is your job, but maybe just keep your space.”

She added: “For the video people, please don’t be yelling at my husband asking him how he’s doing or whatever - the ‘woohoo’-ing and the ‘yippee ki-yays’… just don’t do it. OK? Give him his space. Allow for our family or whoever’s with him that day to be able to get him from point A to point B safely.”

Her request comes just a few weeks after Willis' family announced that his speaking disorder had progressed into a form of dementia called frontotemporal dementia (FTD).

FTD is an “umbrella term” for a group of dementias that mainly affect the frontal and temporal lobes of the brain, which are responsible for such things as personality, behaviour, language and speech, according to Dementia UK.

The charity said that FTD is a “rare” form of dementia that affects only around one in 20 people with a dementia diagnosis.

Hemming Willis made the video after a rare outing in Santa Monica was hampered by the media. Credit: AP

Heming Willis added in the caption to the video: “To other caregivers or dementia care specialist navigating this world… any tips or advice on how to get your loved ones out in the world safely? Please share below.”

Heming Willis and Willis, 67, married in 2009 and have two daughters, Mabel and Evelyn.

“Today there are no treatments for the disease, a reality that we hope can change in the years ahead.

"As Bruce’s condition advances, we hope that any media attention can be focused on shining a light on this disease that needs far more awareness and research,” they said last month in an update shared online.

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