Die Hard scenario Wiki
Die Hard 2 theatrical poster
Written by Walter Wager (novel)
Steven E. de Souza
Doug Richardson
Directed by Renny Harlin
Produced by Charles Gordon
Lawrence Gordon
Joel Silver
Starring Bruce Willis
William Sadler
Bonnie Bedelia
Dennis Franz
John Amos
Franco Nero
Music by Michael Kamen
Cinematography by Oliver Wood
Editing by Stuart Baird
Robert A. Ferretti
Distributed by 20th Century Fox
Release Date June 29, 1990
Rated R
Run time 124 min.
Budget $70,000,000 (est.)
Grossed $240,031,094
Preceded by Die Hard
Followed by Die Hard with a Vengeance

Die Hard 2, also known as Die Hard 2: Die Harder , is a 1990 film and the second in the Die Hard series. It was released on Wednesday, July 4, 1990 and was written by Steven E. de Souza & Doug Richardson and directed by Renny Harlin. Bruce Willis reprises his role as John McClane.

This sequel has McClane battles a renegade group of ex-military commandos, headed by cold-blooded military officer Colonel Stuart (William Sadler), who have taken control of Dulles International Airport and hold airline passengers hostage circling above Washington, D.C. in a plan to free captured Latin American dictator General Ramon Esperanza (Franco Nero). McClane must once again battle the terrorists to save his wife Holly (Bonnie Bedelia), who is trapped above Dulles, and stop the escape plot.

The movie is based on a novel by Walter Wager entitled 58 Minutes. The novel has the same premise: a cop must stop terrorists who take an airport hostage while his wife's plane circles overhead. He has 58 minutes to do so before the plane crashes.

Die Hard 2 is met with a mixed to positive reception among critics and fans of the Die Hard film series.


The story begins on Christmas Eve 1990, exactly two years after the Nakatomi Plaza incident. John McClane is at Dulles International Airport near Washington, D.C. As he waits for his wife Holly to arrive from California, airport police tow away his in-laws' car and give him a parking ticket. Hanging out at an airport lounge, McClane sees a group of men, dressed in Army fatigues, pass a package between them and disappear into a restricted area. He follows, and a fight ensues in which McClane kills one of the men, but the second man got away.

McClane confronts the head of the airport police, the hotheaded Captain Carmine Lorenzo, who dismisses McClane's report as punks stealing luggage, despite the fact that one of the assailants was wielding a rare porcelain gun designed to evade metal detectors. McClane storms off to investigate on his own, taking fingerprints from the corpse and faxing them to his friend, LAPD officer Al Powell, who runs them through several databases. The resulting records indicate that the man, Sergeant Oswald Cochrane was an American advisor and had been declared officially dead even before the fight, leading McClane to suspect that he had been part of a plot to seize control of the airport.

Which is exactly the truth: as weather conditions worsen, a vengeful rogue US Army officer, Colonel Stuart, prepares to hold the approaching planes and their passengers and crew hostage until he can free a former Central American general and drug lord, Ramon Esperanza; the deposed despot is arriving at the airport under guard. Stuart has set up his operational base in a nearby church and has hacked directly into Dulles' communications and air traffic control.

McClane sneaks into the airport's control tower and confronts the head of air traffic control, Trudeau, just as Stuart commences his operation and takes control of the airport. McClane is chased out from the tower; as he descends in the elevator with reporter Samantha Coleman, she tips him to the presence of Stuart. McClane slips out of the elevator and into the underground maintenance area of the airport, where he gains assistance from an airport janitor named Marvin.

Trudeau and his controllers contact the approaching planes and inform the cabin crews (without mentioning the terrorists) that they must circle the airport. Trudeau’s communications director, Leslie Barnes, takes a team to a new antenna outpost at the skywalk to restore unbugged communication with the planes. He and Lorenzo’s SWAT team are attacked by a detachment of Stuart’s men, result the death in all Five SWAT officers and a lost of one of Stuart's men, Shockley. Fortunately, McClane heard about the auxiliary outpost while in the tower, and just as Barnes is about to be killed, McClane emerges and kills Stuart’s three team members, O'Reilly, Sheldon and Mulkey. Stuart retaliates by crashing a British jet, killing everyone on board. Barnes later warns the plans about the terrorist situation using the Outer Marker, the radio beaker without the terrorist's knowledge.

McClane returns to the underground maintenance level, where two-way radio dropped by one of Stuart’s crew tells him that Esperanza is about to arrive in his now-commandeered plane; he has killed his guard and the pilots. McClane rushes to the runway and briefly apprehends Esperanza, before Stuart and his men show up to retrieve the general themselves. McClane kills Thompson and hides in the cockpit of Esperanza’s plane, but Stuart and his crew toss grenades inside, forcing McClane to strap himself into the pilot’s ejector seat and escape the resulting blast by engaging the eject function.

An Army Special Forces unit arrives at the airport. Their leader, Major Grant, once served with Stuart and claims to know his tactics. Barnes surmises that Stuart’s command post is near the airport, and he and McClane find the church where Stuart is hiding. Shortly after McClane kills Baker, one of Stuart's guards, Grant and his squad show up and a gunfight ensues. Stuart, his men, and Esperanza escape on snowmobiles. McClane chases after them. He kills Burke and Garber and takes a machine gun in possession, but his new gun proves strangely ineffective. McClane checks the weapon and finds that the bullets are blanks.

McClane returns to the airport security office and announces to Lorenzo that Grant and Stuart are actually working together; for "emphasis" McClane fires his sub machine gun (still loaded with blanks) at Lorenzo. Finally, convinced, Lorenzo mobilizes his police to converge on the hangar containing the Boeing 747 that Stuart has demanded as an escape vehicle.

Meanwhile, circling above the airport, Holly has unexpectedly found herself in the same plane as Richard Thornburg, the reporter who had endangered her and John during their previous meeting. As the terrorists' plans unfold both Holly and Thornburg begin to realize that something is amiss; this culminates in Thornburg listening into the tower radio transmissions, learning about the crisis and making a live news report from aboard the plane. The crowds in the airport are thrown into a panic, which greatly hampers McClane's and Lorenzo's efforts to apprehend Stuart. Holly zaps Thornburg unconscious with a fellow passenger's stun gun.

At the army truck, Grant kills the soldier not loyal to Stuart's cause. He and his men meet up with Esperanza, Stuart and his two remaining men, Miller and Kahn at the remote hanger and got onboard the 747.

McClane hitches a ride in Coleman's news helicopter to the villains' plane, which is taxiing for takeoff. He manages to jump onto the wing and finds himself in hand-to-hand combat with Major Grant. Grant is sucked through one of the plane’s engines and killed, but Stuart takes up the fight and kicks McClane off the wing. As he falls, McClane opens the fuel hatch on the engine. McClane uses his cigarette lighter to ignite the spilling fuel, which burns right up to the plane even as it takes off, causing it to explode, killing everyone inside and avenging over 200 innocents. It also provides a landing light for the other planes, which all touch down safely. Emergency services arrive and begin evacuating the air passengers, including Holly and a badly-shaken Thornburg. McClane and Holly joyfully reunite, Lorenzo tears up McClane's parking ticket as a Christmas gift, and Marvin takes the couple home.

Cast and characters[]

Law Enforcement[]

Passengers/Airline Crew[]

  • Bonnie Bedelia as Holly Gennero McClane
  • William Atherton as Richard Thornburg
  • Michael Francis Clarke as Pilot of Northeast Airlines 140 plane
  • Steve Pershing as Co-Pilot of Northeast Airlines 140 plane
  • Tom Everett as Navigator of Northeast Airlines 140 plane
  • Colm Meaney as Pilot of Windsor Airlines 114 plane
  • Vance Valencia as Pilot of Foreign Military One plane
  • Gilbert Garcia as Co-Pilot of Foreign Military One plane
  • Julian Reyes as Young Corporal


Dulles International Tower Personnel[]


  • Tom Bower as Marvin
  • Sheila McCarthy as Samantha 'Sam' Coleman
  • Patrick O'Neal as Corporal Telford

External Links[]