Back in 2008, years before Rumer Willis made a lasting impression on Dancing With the Stars, the scion of Demi Moore and Bruce Willis was just trying to make it as an actor. In an interview with MTV, she spoke about the difficulty she had rebutting the assumption that she had an advantage because of her lineage. As this season of Dancing With the Stars explored, Willis was badly bullied online for her looks and family relationships. Reaching the semifinals of DWTS gave her, more than anything, self-confidence.
Seven years ago, she explained that she understood why people didn’t always believe she was working towards success on her own accord.
“I understand that, you know, because when you get attention when you haven’t earned it or when it’s not because of work, it does look kind of shady. That’s something that, you know, at some point in your life you kind of deal with through proving that you have a work ethic.”
Willis has proved her willingness to work hard, appearing in small, independent films that flew under the radar. Blogger Pamela Glasner pointed out Willis’ performance in The Odd Way Home, that explores human relationships and features a character with autism. Glasner called Willis’ acting “exquisite,” glimpses of which are evident in the film’s trailer, below.
Rumer also appeared in Always Woodstock, and the very brief shot of Willis in the film’s trailer shows her range as an actor. Compared with the apparent vulnerability of her character in The Odd Way Home, in this film she puts on a tougher exterior.
During the performance package before Rumer and Valentin Chmerkovskiy’s dance on Monday night, Demi Moore expressed her happiness at Rumer’s evolution through the Dancing With the Stars season.
“One of the most beautiful things I’ve witnessed is watching her passion become greater than her fear. It has nothing to do with her being my kid or Bruce’s kid. It has everything to do with just who she is.”
Tuesday night, Rumer and Val will find out if they are headed to the finals of Dancing With the Stars. They have jockeyed for position against Derek Hough/Sasha Farber and Nastia Liukin, as well as Riker Lynch and Allison Holker. Glamour blogger Jessica Radloff offered her opinion that Noah Galloway and Sharna Burgess should be the couple eliminated Tuesday night. CarterMatt also put Liukin, Lynch and Willis in its top 3, which mirrors the judges’ scores all season.
Dancing With the Stars airs 8 p.m. on ABC.
[Rumer Willis image courtesy of Getty]