Die Hard Director Takes 12 Minutes to Prove Why Bruce Willis Classic Is a Christmas Movie
John McTiernan is setting the record straight once and for all!
For years, fans of the flick have argued if the 1988 film should be considered a Christmas movie — given that it takes place on Christmas Eve – despite being released to theaters in the summer.
And according to McTiernan, it is indeed a holiday film. "We hadn't intended it to be a Christmas movie, but the joy that came from it is what turned it into a Christmas movie," he said.
Based on the 1979 novel Nothing Lasts Forever by Roderick Thorp, Die Hard stars Bruce Willis as a New York City policeman who gets caught up in a terrorist attack while visiting his estranged wife at a Los Angeles skyscraper. The film also stars Alan Rickman, Alexander Godunov, and Bonnie Bedelia.
During his lengthy video posted by the AFI, McTiernan also described the film as "a terrorist movie" and said, "It was really about the stern face of authority stepping in to put things right again."
McTiernan then explained how he and producer Joel Silver compared it to the Pottersville sequence from the 1946 film, It's a Wonderful Life, which McTiernan said was "the clearest demonstration and criticism of runaway unregulated war capitalism."
Comparing Die Hard and the current state of American politics, the director then added, "There are genuinely evil people out there."
"My hope at Christmas this year is that you will all remember that authoritarians are low-status, angry men who have gone to rich people and said, 'If you give us power, we will make sure nobody takes your stuff.' And their obsessions with guns and boots and uniforms and squad cars and all that stuff," he noted. "And all those things you amass with power meant to scare us, meant to shut us up so we don't kick them to the side of the road and decent people of the world get on with building a future."
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Back in 2017, the film's co-writer, Steven E. de Souza, similarly weighed in on the debate after being asked his take on the action film's holiday status by CNN’s Jake Tapper.
"I’m sure you’ve weighed in on it before, but I’ve never heard you or Jeb Stuart offer your take on whether Die Hard is a Christmas movie," Tapper, 51, tweeted at the time.
"Yes, because the studio rejected the Purim draft," de Souza joked, before adding the hashtag, "#DieHardIsAChristmasMovie."
The film's main star, however, has expressed his views that the film is not a Christmas movie. "Die Hard is not a Christmas movie!" Willis said in 2018, per Entertainment Weekly.