Interview Of Luc Besson About The Fifth Element
Bruce Willis :
First of all, Bruce Willis is a very good actor. The problem is that stars of Bruce's caliber are "used" as such and not like actors. Bruce can do anything, play anything and I think he had a good time while filming precisely because he got to do a lot of different things.
I hadn't written the part with him in mind - I never write for anyone in particular. I'm interested in writing an "overall" character and then work on fleshing out the character with the actor. It's important to be able to say at the end of production that no other actor could have played the part. I like this feeling: Christopher Lambert was right for "Subway", Jean-Marc Barr for "The Big Blue" or Jean Reno for "The Professional".
At any rate, Bruce was perfect for this movie. I think he broke all speed records: I brought him the screenplay which he read right away and called me two hours later to say, "Yes, it's OK, I'll do it"! I thought I was dreaming...