Expendables producers address Bruce Willis’ absence from explosive new movie

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Most notably, CIA agent Mr Church, played by action legend Bruce Willis, won’t be returning to join the new crew as confirmed by producers Kevin King-Templeton and Les Weldon.

Speaking to Daily Express, the pair, who have both been involved in every Expendables film, noted that fans shouldn’t be deterred as there’s still a lengthy list of “new blood” joining the Expendables team.

Addressing Bruce’s absence in the new installment, Kevin shared: “You have to work with what and who you have available. We bring back as much of the core characters as you can.

“Bruce had a cameo in the first, a bit more of a part in the second one. The fourth was kind of…you have to evolve.”

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However, earlier this year his ex Demi Moore and the rest of the Willis family revealed his diagnosis had progressed to frontotemporal dementia, with his wife Emma Heming Willis dutifully updating his fans on his condition through Instagram as she became his carer.

Les pointed out that the Expendables legacy has seen many big names and key characters dropping in and out of the varying installments, but sometimes the reason behind stars missing out on the action is far more simple than fans may expect.

He revealed: “Sometimes it’s a scheduling thing and a few actors from past Expendables were just not available.”

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“That’s why if you introduce some good characters the whole film benefits. The whole franchise benefits from it.”

Kevin also cautioned that it’s tricky business finding stars that will “seamlessly” fit into the A-list group, especially as the dynamic with the “core group” changes with Arnold Schwarzenegger and Terry Crews also not returning to the franchise.

There’s a fresh new batch of A-listers joining the team, and the producers couldn’t praise them enough especially Curtis Jackson, also known as 50 Cent.

Kevin shared: “50 injects a lot of fun into his character. It just seemed to be organic,” with Les quickly adding: “He was a good combination with Dolph too because they have sort of a side story.”

Expendables 4 releases in cinemas on September 22.

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