After the success of the first film, 20th Century Fox obviously decided to launch the production of a new component “Die Hard”. But do you know why this second episode of the “Die Hard” saga is called “58 minutes to live”?
Die Hard : an emblematic saga
The first part, Crystal trap, released in 1988. Directed by John McTiernan, this first Die Hard is now considered a cult film. An emblematic work of American action cinema which has notably made it possible to reveal to the world an actor today internationally famous: Bruce Willis. 4 Oscar nominees, Crystal trap also earns more than $ 141 million in box office revenue (for a budget of 28 million).
Faced with this triumph, 20th Century Fox begins production of a sequel at the end of 1989. Die Hard 2: 58 minutes to live released in 1990, still with Bruce Willis in the title role. Unfortunately, John McTiernan, busy on the set of Hunting for Red October is unavailable to perform 58 minutes to live. So it’s Renny Harlin (Cliffhanger, Blue Fear, Goodbye, forever) who takes care of the staging of this suite. Even if this second installment receives less optimistic reviews than the original film, it nevertheless brings in more than $ 240 million in box office revenue (for a budget of 70 million).
Why this title?
In this second chapter, John McLane waits for his wife’s plane to land at Washington airport. However, a gang of thugs tries to take control of the airport. This is without counting on the presence of John McClane. What’s pretty funny is that the villains in this movie hail from Val Verde, a totally fictional state, created by producer Joel Silver. The latter cited the Val Verde in two other of his productions of the time: Commando and Predator.
A question remains, however. For what reasons, Die Hard 2 named 58 minutes to live ? In the original version, this sequel is simply called Die Hard 2, without any subtitle. It is therefore the French distributors who added this subtitle. Still, there’s no real question of a countdown in the feature film, let alone a 58-minute stopwatch. One of the only time indications given in the film is how much fuel time was left on John McClane’s wife’s plane before it crashed: 90 minutes.
The reason for this title ultimately has nothing to do with the plot. If this title has been imposed on Die Hard 2, it’s because the feature film is inspired by the new 58 minutes by Walter Wagner written in 1987, in which a detective must pick up his daughter from an airport under the control of a terrorist. Thus, the French distributors preferred to add this subtitle to evoke the news which inspired the film.