Broadway Brawler is the title of an unfinished film starring Bruce Willis and Maura Tierney. Willis also acted as co-producer.
The film was set to be a family-friendly romantic comedy set in the world of hockey. Willis played the part of Eddie Kapinsky, the titular “Broadway Brawler,” a retired hockey player romancing Maura Tierney’s character (name unknown).
After twenty days of shooting, production was halted as the result of Willis’ dissatisfaction with director Lee Grant, co-producer Joe Feury, and director of photography William Fraker. They were all fired, along with an unknown number of cast and crew members. In an effort to salvage the film, which had already spent $15-17 million of its $28 million dollar budget, Dennis Dugan was brought on by Willis to replace Lee Grant as director, however, filming never resumed.
The failure of Broadway Brawler had some interesting consequences. Due to Bruce Willis’ actions being the main cause of the films demise, he was left with some potential legal problems with the Walt Disney Company. To avoid this, producer Joe Roth persuaded him to accept a three-picture deal with Disney.
To offset the loss on Broadway Brawler, Willis took his next role at a greatly reduced salary—$3 million instead of his then expected $20 million. That role was “Harry Stamper” in the hit 1998 film Armageddon. Incidentally, Willis reportedly replaced Sean Connery in that role.
The other films in that deal were M. Night Shyamalan’s The Sixth Sense (1999) and The Kid (2000).