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“A sure formula for career failure”: Sylvester Stallone Humiliated Bruce Willis in Public for Refusing $3M Pay-Check, Replaced Him With Harrison Ford in Days

sylvester stallone bruce willis and harrison ford

During the 80s and 90s, two of the most notable stars of that era were Sylvester Stallone and Bruce Willis, who are now considered among some of the most beloved action stars of all time. Both the actors would find themselves starring in some of the most influential action flicks of that time, including Willis’ Die Hard and Stallone’s First Blood, which cemented them at the top of the industry.

But despite being the most in-demand actors of their time, the duo wouldn’t collaborate for decades and eventually would join forces to work in the heavy star-casted The Expendables franchise. However, after working in two successful installments, things would go south between the actors after Willis decided to back out from the role.

Also read: “No one has a knife like that”: Arnold Schwarzenegger Trolled Sylvester Stallone for Rambo Knife That Was Built Like a Sword, Getting Carried Away While Competing With Him

Sylvester Stallone
Sylvester Stallone

Sylvester Stallone called out Bruce Willis after he stepped down from The Expendables 3

Following the high-profile star cast for the movies, including some of the biggest action stars of our time, the first two Expendable movies were loved by fans and did good numbers at the box office. Bruce Willis, who played the role of Mr. Chruch would portray the character in the first two installments but the Die Hard star would eventually leave the franchise due to salary issues.

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Although Willis was highly involved in the sequel, the third movie noticeably didn’t comprise much of his work, and was only asked to shoot for four days for a salary of $3 million. However, Willis was adamant about receiving a higher paycheck of $4 million and would eventually pass the role when denied. Sylvester Stallone later addressed the issue and called out Willis through his social media handle by stating, “Greedy and lazy . . .A sure formula for career failure”.

He also wasted no time in hiring another huge star for the threequel and was able to get Harrison Ford into the mix.


Bruce Willis later addressed the issue and explained his reasoning for backing out from the franchise while explaining that the paycheck wasn’t the only issue behind the reason to leave his role.

Also read: Sylvester Stallone Found Scene Where Woman He Slept With Flees in Horror after Realizing He’s 75 “Quite flattering and also quite depressing”

Bruce Willis as Mr. Church
Bruce Willis as Mr. Church

Bruce Willis was bored with the action genre

After finding himself in a plethora of action movies throughout his career, Willis explained that he was no longer intrigued by the idea of starring in action movies. Although the actor admitted that the action genre generates the most revenue, he was kind of bored by the trope and shifted his focus to other small-budget, medium-budget, and even sci-fi productions. He said,

“Explosions are one of the most boring parts of my job. When you have seen a few fireballs, it’s not exciting anymore. Part of my audience enjoys the explosions but to be honest, I’m a bit bored with it.”

Also read: “They’re never going to show this”: $113M Sylvester Stallone Movie Was So Exceptionally Visceral He Wasn’t Sure If Theatres Will Screen It

Sylvester Stallone and Bruce Willis
Sylvester Stallone and Bruce Willis

Despite the initial rift between the two celebrities at the time, Stallone would later make amends to his Expendables costar through his social media handle by stating, “Made up with BRUCE W. A stand up guy, my mistake…”.

The Expendables 3 is available to stream on Apple TV.

Source: Sylvester Stallone’s Twitter

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Written by Santanu Roy

Santanu Roy is a film enthusiast with a deep love for the medium of animation while also being obsessed with The Everly Brothers, Billy Joel, and The Platters. Having expertise in everything related to Batman, Santanu spends most of his time watching and learning films, with Martin Scorsese and Park Chan-wook being his personal favorites. Apart from pursuing a degree in animation, he also possesses a deep fondness for narrative-driven games and is currently a content writer at Fandomwire with over 1000 articles.