"He's an incredible guy," says Ben, while dad Jerry adds, "He'll put his life together"

By Shelley Akers and Nicholas White
Updated December 01, 2020 06:17 PM
Credit: Kevin Winter/Getty; Fame

Ben Stiller says things are looking up for his longtime pal and frequent costar Owen Wilson.

“He’s doing really well,” Stiller, 41, tells Ellen DeGeneres on her show Friday.

“I sort of like to protect his privacy, ’cause I feel like it’s his own thing,” says Stiller. “But he’s a really good friend of mine. He’s an incredible guy and I wish him as everybody does, all the best.”

Wilson, 38, was set to begin shooting the comedy Tropic Thunder with Stiller this month, but was hospitalized on Aug. 26 for what police called a suicide attempt. He dropped out of the film after issuing a statement requesting that he be allowed to “receive care and heal in private during this difficult time.”

Wilson’s withdrawal from the project – which is about actors on a war movie location where a real battle erupts – was reportedly a mutual decision between him and Stiller, and Matthew McConaughey has stepped in to join the ensemble cast that includes Jack Black, Robert Downey Jr. and Nick Nolte.

Speaking at Thursday night’s Westwood premiere of his and his son’s latest movie, The Heartbreak Kid, Ben’s dad Jerry Stiller, 80, expressed concern for his son’s best friend and said he was “surprised” to hear of Wilson’s apparent suicide attempt – but he was sure that Wilson would “recover.”

“I know that he’ll put his life together,” the elder Stiller, who also costarred with Wilson in 2001’s Zoolander, told PEOPLE. He added that his son has been “very close to Owen for most of their careers,” and that Ben had been an “advocate” in “intervention and all that stuff.”

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