“A Good Day to Die Hard,” the fourth sequel to “Die Hard,” opened in theaters on Valentine’s Day, starring Bruce Willis, and including a credit to Roderick Thorp.
Years before Bruce Willis’s famous ‘Yippie-kai-yay,’ Thorp wrote the novel “Nothing Lasts Forever,” about a detective who must take on 12 terrorists as he’s trapped in a skyscraper on New Year’s Eve.
That book, a sequel to Thorp’s earlier novel “The Detective,” eventually became the basis for 1988′s “Die Hard.” (“The Detective” became a film in 1968, starring Frank Sinatra.)
“Nothing Lasts Forever” has been reissued in print and ebook formats by Graymalkin for the 25th anniversary of “Die Hard.”
“‘Die Hard’ very closely follows the book, so reading ‘Nothing Lasts Forever’ gives fans the chance to enjoy the thrill of the ‘Die Hard’ story in more detail, experience the scenes that didn’t make it into the film, and discover the novel’s shocking ending,” said Graymalkin Media Owner and CEO David Zindel in a news release.
Thorp died in 1999, but his estate recently found an 11-page handwritten document that appears to be Thorp’s initial treatment for “Nothing Lasts Forever.”
“This is an amazing find. It’s on these handwritten pages that ‘Die Hard’ was born,” Zindel said.
The eleven-page treatment is included as a bonus feature in the “Nothing Lasts Forever” ebook.
“When Roderick Thorp wrote this treatment, he knew he was onto something really big. Reading it, you can share in his excitement as he raced to get the story written down. ‘Die Hard’ would go on to completely redefine the action/thriller genre,” Zindel said in the news release.
The novel is similar to the film that eventually resulted, if a bit darker and more introspective. Fans of “Die Hard” will almost certainly want to check out “Nothing Lasts Forever” now that it’s again available to see additional scenes and note what changed. The fast-paced, intense book will even be of interest to readers of detective thrillers who may have somehow missed the “Die Hard” franchise.
In the book, the detective character is named Joe Leland, and is somewhat older and more experienced than John McClane from the first film. But his humanity and world-weariness are conveyed convincingly on the page, as is the drama and excitement as Leland matches wits with the terrorists on a dangerous Christmas Eve.
- By Matthew Price
From Friday’s The Oklahoman