Die Hard 6 screenwriter shares some details on how he is bringing John McClane back to basics
If we can agree on one thing about the last two DIE HARD movies, LIVE FREE OR DIE HARD and A GOOD DAY TO DIE HARD, it is that they are as far away from being DIE HARD movies as possible. Even so, the films grossed enough to warrant a sixth entry in the series. The currently titled DIE HARDEST is going to break with the pattern of the last three films and tell an original story not co-opted from an in development screenplay that has no relation to the DIE HARD franchise.
Ben Trebilcook is currently the writer working on DIE HARD 6 and he sat down with What Culture to shed some light on where he will be taking John McClane on his next adventure. He is a self proclaimed DIE HARD fanatic and was even involved in a proposed DIE HARD television series to be called MCCLANE or DIE HARD 24/7 that never took off. We have heard rumblings that the next movie would be set in Japan, but before you freak out, hear what Trebilcook is, well, cooking.
Hmm, what can I say? What can I say? What am I allowed to say? OK, without spoiling too much, I can say that McClane is invited to Tokyo by the Nakatomi Corporation to be commended for his bravery and efforts in saving 36 lives, celebrating this on the 30th anniversary of the Naktatomi Hostage Crisis. It’s by no means BLACK RAIN. Perhaps has a slight RISING SUN type tone. It’s also not a double-act buddy-buddy story. McClane began on his own and should end on his own. Of course he’s had assistance in various guises, aiding him in his ventures; but it’s not Lethal Weapon or a Jackie Chan film.
Trebilcook goes on into further detail about the plot and where he is taking Bruce Willis in the story. The key is that it sounds like a return to the basics that made DIE HARD so good and not an over the top schlockfest that the last two movies became. He even showed it to an industry friend who had good things to say.
As a fan? A well known Hollywood director pal of mine is a massive Die Hard fan. Huge. He read it and adored it. Having him alone read it and say he liked it was good enough, but saying it ticked so many fan-boxes for him and made him smile and was a keen page-turner, well, if the script doesn’t go anywhere, his comments were winter fuel on these cold, dark, London nights. For me, as a fan, familiarity. I’d be saying ‘Yes!’ throughout particular scenes and smiling fondly with certain lines of dialogue. Some insane action. I’ve tied a lot of things together.
This is all well and good, but Trebilcook goes out of his way to say this is not a buddy action movie and yet references potential room for Samuel L. Jackson to return as Zeus. Either way this goes, DIE HARD 6 has a long road to win back fans who felt slighted by the recent entries in the series and I truly hope that this draft is as good as the writer thinks it is. For all of our sakes.