What's Happened to Die Hard 4 - Even Bruce Willis Doesn't Approve?!
by Alex Billington
May 2, 2007
The guys at Ain't It Cool News pointed out an interesting statement made by Bruce Willis in regards to Live Free or Die Hard (4) being rated only PG-13 that's really worth mentioning. We know that Bruce Willis is kind of an asshole in real life, despite appearing in just about every movie this year and last year, but he's the frontrunner in the Die Hard series, and he should be the one making sure this 4th one lives up to all of the first 3. However there was an alarming statement made by him in Vanity Fair, which we'll reprint here for you.
"In June's VANITY FAIR, it states that Bruce Willis was initially disappointed that his fourth DIE HARD film will likely be cut to get a PG-13 rating rather than an R. 'I really wanted this one to live up to the promise of the first one, which I always thought was the only really good one.' And he's not happy about it. 'That's a studio decision that is becoming more and more common, because they're trying to reach a broader audience. It seems almost a courageous move to give a picture an R rating these days. But we still made a pretty hardcore, smashmouth film.'"
This isn't the first time a studio has really gone overboard with their controlling hand on a film, it happened with Julie Taymor's Across the Universe (read the story here). It looks like Zack Snyder with 300 is the only one who really could pull off a harsh R-rating with the studio and look what happened, it was an immense success! I really hate 20th Century Fox, I really do, and this just proves to me again that they don't know how to do anything right. Even worse is that the first 3 Die Hard movies were all rated R! Why change the pattern in 2007?!
Hopefully the movie is at least somewhat enjoyable, despite being rated PG-13 and butchered by the Fox execs. Either way they've just put themselves in a pot of boiling water with this news, let's see if they can pull themselves out now.
Reader Feedback - 13 Comments
I'm slightly disappointed this is going for a PG-13....Hopefully they'll be smart enough to release an R-rated director's cut....
Flutie on May 2, 2007
[...] FirstShowing.net has up a summary of an article that was posted about at Ain’t It Cool, and I think Bruce Willis, along with everyone else, has valid points that the movie should be rated R. [...]
Fox studios just lost a whole lot of respect...but wait, didn't they ruin AvP as well? I WILL NOT PAY TO SEE THIS MOVIE IN THEATRES. DIE HARD is a hardcore action series that just got shit on by the execs. Hey Fox, why don't you leave creativity to creative people and leave at least this film alone. I never would have thought that this would happen to the DIE HARD series. We can't even get the original version of ALIEN RESURRECTION from you guys, and you hacked AvP to bits beyond repair. What next? A PG rated Excorsist flick? Back the hell off and for once LISTEN TO THE PEOPLE THAT WATCH THE MOVIES!
Michael Draven on May 3, 2007
Since you mentioned "Across the Universe" in this post, I thought it worth mentioning that a trailer for it was shown before my screening of Spidey 3, and it still had Julie Taymor's name on it. (The story you linked to about Taymor threatening to take her name off the film is from a month and a half ago.)
Edward on May 4, 2007
Actually I have to correct you there buddy- "With A Vengeance" the third "die hard" film [and the first without a following number on the sequel title] was pg-13- at least at the theatre i saw it at and at the time i saw it at... and apparently there were the same thoughts from execs and you know it did suffer a little bit but still was an awesome movie to boot- samuel l. jackson and jeremy irons definitely made up well for the stilted writing or directing where otherwise it would have sufferred from waterring down- still a great film and good enough so you hardly notice theres almost no blood in the movie or cussing to reduce the rating- and i think that shows that it was well directed and so on... that it can still be as good as the first two without people thinking "hey somethings missing...." now robocop 3 did suck from trying to reduce it to a pg-13 and deliver it to a much younger audience and demographic- they just shouldve kept on with more of the people involved with the first "robocop" and stayed to the same formula instead of trying to make it any different or lighter later on.... Peace, -Mike
Michael Wais, Jr. on May 6, 2007
Whoa- I didn't remember the thing about it getting awards or having strong cuss words- at least not as much as the first two.... I'm confused- Well I saw it when it was in theatres and that was years ago so I might remember it differently.... Like the song says, "I could be wrong, I could be right". While the internet has its flaws [wikipedia is known for bogus entries sometimes causing random people their jobs] it was long enough ago for me to remember incorrectly- and then they also might've changed the rating back and forth. Anyway thankyou so much for the link Alex to correct me in case I'm not accurate in what I rememberred from the MPAA rating-level-specs for "With A Vengeance". Peace Everybody, -Mike
Michael Wais, Jr. on May 6, 2007
don't hate the player; hate the game
LHB on May 7, 2007
It kind of sucks that the 4th Die Hard would be PG-13 if the first three were R! Keep tradition! That's just like when RoboCop 3 was PG-13. If you go a way, go up, like Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire or Gremlins 2 did! But you know what they'll do - they'll totally have the PG-13 version fo rthe theaters and then release "Live Free or Die Hard: The Unrated Cut: 2-Disc Yippie-Ki-Yay Edition" on DVD. Complete with a free ticket of Justin Long's "Die Hard 5" where he takes down the PC guy from his Mac commercials. Ha ha ha!
Optimus PrimeTime on May 17, 2007
Don't change the formula just to cash in. That should have been learned from previous movies that lowered the rating just to get more people in. Think how many people are not going to see it. If viewers enjoyed the previous movies they are expecting the same violence, and language with this as the previous. This is a bad move on FOX, but they have made many more before this AVP(big example). DIE HARD 4 may do good at the BOX Office but in the true fans of the triology it will forever be a bad taste in their mouth. Lethal Weapon stayed true to the end and it was a good end to a great action series. You might also remember Speed 2, Robocop 3,MAD MAX Beyond Thunderdome, PG-13 all sucked. If a series starts out R it should stay R. There is still time to save this movie for what it is worth.
Brian on May 19, 2007
I loved the movie and I love Bruce Willis. So whatever he says I agree. I love him.
Stephanie on Jul 1, 2007
I have not see this movie yet..I love Bruce and I have met him personal and professionally ..The reason why I am responding to this is cause some ass wants to use my name and try to put down movies etc..My advice is sit and watch over 5,000 movies and learn something other than it's a bomb or hit..learn how hard it is to reprise a role or build up a movie that people never thought was going to be made again..Learn the process of relating to character and understanding how we are in the limelight and risk how lives durning the productions of these movis that you have to suffer through.While your sitting there on that couch on your ass ask yourself this..after you die ...will anyone remember you after a year..you be surprised what friends andfamily would say..
Michael Draven on Sep 10, 2007
Whoa... That was the most passionate statement about action films I've ever heard. Frankly, I won't remember Bruce Willis after he dies, because I've never met him before and really don't have too much of an opinion on him personally because if I said he was a friend of mine that would make me a) a stalker or b) a con artist unlike those that actually do know him (I do sympathize that he had a wife who looked hot ditch him for some dude old enough to be his son... Anyway I'm getting off topic here fantasizing about Demi Moore and realizing how lucky I am to be 26...). Other than that I agree with you on a lot of points Mike. Especially that there is more to movies than "It's good" or "It sucks". Well my point is... I mean still- They're movies, not wars... Peace, -Mike
Michael Wais, Jr. on Sep 10, 2007
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