'Old habits Die Hard': writer pitches Bruce Willis sequel in Hollywood Reporter ad
Eric D Wilkinson's unsolicited idea for the action franchise sees John McClane thrown in prison, charged with murder
A screenwriter has pitched his idea for a Die Hard sequel by buying a full-page ad in The Hollywood Reporter.
Eric D. Wilkinson, an independent film writer and producer, presented his advert as an open letter to Bruce Willis, who played John McClane in all five Die Hard movies, producer Lorenzo di Bonaventura and director Len Wiseman.
It has already been rumoured that a sixth Die Hard film is to be made, with the plot likely to be some kind of prequel with much of the action set in 1979 – when Willis’s character was a cop in New York City. Len Wiseman, who made 2007’s Live Free or Die Hard, is attached to direct to movie which is to be called Die Hard: Year One.
In his letter, Wilkinson explains that he is a huge Die Hard fan, and when he heard about plans to make the next film an origin story, he wanted to contribute his own idea for a plot.
Wilkinson’s story opens with a 60-year-old McClane being sent to prison for an unknown reason, before flashing back to the Seventies. The young McClane is investigating the murder of a young boy but, because of his propensity to not playing by the rules, lets his only suspect get away.
Flashing forward to the events of A Good Day to Die Hard set in Russia, the body of that suspect is discovered along with DNA evidence pointing to McClane.
Upon returning to the US, McClane is arrested and convicted of murder and sent to prison, where his fellow inmates include a pair of Middle-Eastern terrorists. McClane’s wife then finds evidence to prove he didn’t commit the murder, only for a riot to break out and the prison goes into lockdown. It is then revealed that the riot was part of a scheme for the terrorists to escape so that they could carry out an attack in New York.
Wilkinson concludes: “However, the one thing [the] terrorists didn’t count on was the one man who is always in the wrong place at the wrong time…and when it comes to John McClane, old habits die hard.”