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Much has been made recently about a proposed return to the Die Hard franchise. One of the actors who helped build the franchise at the beginning was Reginald VelJohnson as Sgt. Al Powell, the LAPD beat cop who came to the rescue of Bruce Willis’ John McClane in the first film. VelJohnson has some of his own ideas about what another Die Hard movie could be about. Since he’s already run through every possible combination of human terrorist on the planet, VelJohnson thinks the only place left to go is someplace over the top. Die Hard with zombies.
The problem is that after five movies we’ve pretty much seen John McClane overcome everything imaginable. There just isn’t a lot left. If you’re going to go ahead and do another movie, how do you do something different? You add flesh eating monsters, of course.
How many times can this guy get into trouble and then get out of it on his own? So it would have to be something unique. Maybe you could have John McClane fighting zombies. That could work.
Before you jump down to the comments and go indiscriminately crazy, please understand that VelJohnson is kidding. When he said this to The Hollywood Reporter he did so while laughing about it. What he’s actually doing is trying to show how absolutely ridiculous the Die Hard movies have become with their recent sequels. John McClane’s appeal in the first movies was that he was just an ordinary guy in an extraordinary situation. Now he’s invincible. So once you’ve made your character a superhero, how do you challenge him? With something equally fantastical, and zombies are as good as a solution as any.
The good news is that zombies or vampires likely won’t be part of the next Die Hard movie, which is currently being looked at as a prequel. While there’s at least one idea we like out there for a potential prequel (because it’s only barely a prequel), for the most part the fan base really isn’t on board with such a concept. Of course the worst part of a prequel is that there’s no chance that Sgt. Al Powell would be in it. VelJohnson says he’d be willing to return the role of Al Powell again for the right script. Maybe that’s what the sequels have all been missing. Is Reginald VelJohnson the secret to a successful Die Hard movie?
Actually the more we think about it, maybe there’s something here. A (non-canonical) crossover between The Evil Dead and Die Hard? A couple of over the hill guys in the most extraordinary of situations with bullets and catchphrases to burn. Somebody write this script for us, will you?