Director Kevin Smith feels like 'an asshole' for past Bruce Willis comments

NEW YORK - FEBRUARY 22:  (L-R) Actor Bruce Willis, actress Ana de la Reguera, actor Tracy Morgan and director Kevin Smith attend the premiere of
Kevin Smith directed Bruce Willis in Cop Out. (WireImage)

Kevin Smith has said he feels like 'an asshole' for his 'petty complaints' about Bruce Willis, after the actor revealed he is suffering from aphasia.

Willis’ family announced this week that he was stepping away from acting after being diagnosed with the brain condition, which can affect a person's speech and ability to write.

Smith directed Willis in 2010 in the film Cop Out, which also starred Tracy Morgan and Ana de la Reguera.

Read more: Celebrities react to Bruce Willis stepping away from acting amid aphasia battle

He has since been critical of the Die Hard actor, and said on the WTF with Marc Maron podcast in 2011 that working with him on the cop comedy was 'f****** soul crushing'.

However, Smith has now joined other fans and celebs in expressing support after Willis’ news.

“Long before any of the Cop Out stuff, I was a big Bruce Willis fan - so this is really heart-breaking to read,” he tweeted.

“He loved to act and sing and the loss of that has to be devastating for him.

“I feel like an asshole for my petty complaints from 2010.”

“So sorry to BW and his family,” added the filmmaker.

NEW YORK - JULY 22:  Director Kevin Smith and actor Bruce Willis on location for
Director Kevin Smith with Bruce Willis in 2009. (WireImage)

It was announced this week that Willis, 67, was moving away from acting.

Several of his family members shared the same message on social media, including his former wife Demi Moore.

"To Bruce’s amazing supporters, as a family we wanted to share that our beloved Bruce has been experiencing some health issues and has recently been diagnosed with aphasia, which is impacting his cognitive abilities," it said.

"As a result of this and with much consideration Bruce is stepping away from the career that has meant so much to him."

Willis's family said it was a "really challenging time" and they appreciated all the love, compassion and support.

"We are moving through this as a strong family unit, and wanted to bring his fans in because we know how much he means to you, as you do to him," the post said.

"As Bruce always says, 'Live it up' and together we plan to do just that."

Read more: Demi Moore pays tribute to ex-husband Bruce Willis on his birthday

It was signed by Moore, the star's wife Emma Heming and his daughters Rumer, Scout, Tallulah, Mabel and Evelyn.

Watch: Bruce Willis announces aphasia diagnosis and the end of his acting career