Die Hard

Trivia: During filming, Alan Rickman was found proficient at mimicking American accents; the scene in which McClane and Hans Gruber meet was then inserted.

Trivia: Nakatomi Plaza, the setting of the film, is actually Fox Headquarters in Los Angeles.

Trivia: One cop says that John McClane (Bruce Willis) "could be a f***ing bartender for all we know". Prior to becoming a well-known actor, Willis was a bartender.

Trivia: When Bruce Willis (well, the stuntman) misses one of the vents in the elevator shaft, this was unintentional. John McTiernan left it in to give viewers a little scare.

Trivia: All the terrorists are wearing the same make of watch, a fact that was cut from the movie. On leaving the truck at the start they synchronised them, and after killing some of the men, McClane noticed the matching watches. This is primarily what gave away "Bill Clay" as being a terrorist - McClane, already suspicious, noticed the brand of watch he was wearing. These references were cut because of a change to the script. The ambulance being used at the end was a late addition, however the synchronisation scene took place in the truck, where there was blatantly no ambulance (as noted in the mistake section). As such they cut that shot as short as possible, banking on audiences not registering the lack of ambulance, but the price was having to lose all reference to the watches.

Jon Sandys Premium member

Trivia: Bruce Willis lost two-thirds of his hearing in his left ear after firing a gun loaded with extra loud blanks from underneath a table in the scene before he throws the dead terrorist onto Al's car.

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Trivia: For the shot where Hans Gruber falls from the top of the building, Alan Rickman was dropped by a stuntman from a 20-foot high model onto an air bag. To get the right reaction, the stunt man dropped Rickman on the count of two instead of three. Rickman said "That sounded like fun and so I decided to do it, I thought they were a bit surprised that I said I would and I was surrounded by people saying, 'You're mad, you're mad!' But no, it was fun. And it was the last shot, so if I'd broken my neck, they'd still have a movie."

Trivia: At the end, Karl emerges from the building and tries to kill McClane, only to be gunned down by Powell. The triumphant music which swells as Powell shoots him is a piece of unused score written for the movie "Aliens."


Trivia: In the German version, all German terrorists received Anglicized names, and their background was altered as well. This was due to terrorist activities in Germany - the kidnapping of an airplane in Landshut (1977) and the activities of the Rote-Armee-Faktion ('Red Army Faction') in the Seventies; the German producers evidently felt uncomfortable about the idea of having German terrorists appear in foreign movies also.

Trivia: Die Hard and Die Hard 2 are based on books by separate authors, "Nothing Lasts Forever" by Roderick Thorp and "58 Minutes" by Walter Wager, which share none of the same characters. In both books, it is the hero's daughter that is in peril rather than his wife, and the hero is also more trusted by the authorities than McClane. (In "Nothing Lasts Forever," he tosses his wallet out the window so the police on the ground know he's a cop.).

Trivia: The scene where Alan Rickman and Bruce Willis meet atop the Nakatomi Tower was completely unrehearsed. This was done in order to create a greater feeling of spontaneity between the two men.

Trivia: The terrorists show up at Nakatomi Plaza in a truck marked "Pacific Courier" (except Karl and Theo, who arrive by car). This fictional company name also appears on the side of the plane the bus crashes into at the end of "Speed." Jan de Bont, who directed "Speed," was DP on "Die Hard."


Trivia: The password cracked to enter the safe is Akagi / Red Castle, the name of an aircraft carrier which seemingly Takagi's grandfather served on. It fought in the Battle of Midway, under the command of Vice Admiral Nagumo. James Shigeta, who played Takagi in this film, also played Nagumo in the 1976 film Midway.

Jon Sandys Premium member

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Continuity mistake: When the terrorists launch the rocket at the RV, they break the same window of the building twice. (01:11:55)

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Question: On the some versions (TV), when Al walks in the lobby to check it out, right before he gets to the elevators and then leaves, the camera pans to the left and you see a terrorist with a machine gun waiting for him. On other versions (VHS) you don't see this terrorist. Why? NOTE: I've seen both on the same TV set.

Answer: The most likely reason is that the two versions have been "panned and scanned" differently. In the original theater version, both things are on screen at the same time at opposite sides of the screen. In one version, the person who did the TV P&S (not someone associated with the making of the film) chose to move the view from one side of the original picture to the other, showing the terrorist, while the person who did the VHS P&S stayed focused on one side of the frame, only showing Al.


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