DIE HARD isn’t just a Christmas film, it’s more of a Christmas film than the greatest festive film of them all, Bing Crosby’s White Christmas.
That’s according to Steven E. de Souza, one of the two writers behind Die Hard who has come out swinging in the great debate over whether John McClane’s heroics merit inclusion in the great pantheon of festive flicks.
In an attempt to prove Die Hard is as much a Christmas film as the very best, de Souza has drawn a comparison between the 1988 action movie and Crosby’s 1954 festive favourite White Christmas.
To de Souza’s way of thinking, much of the criticism naysayers like to level at Die Hard for not being a Christmas film could easily apply to White Christmas.
He argues that if you were to apply the same rules to White Christmas, it wouldn’t be considered a Christmas movie either.
Speaking on the Script Apart podcast, de Souza laid out his argument:
“I think we can all agree, even the sceptics on why Die Hard is a Christmas movie or not, that White Christmas – the 1950s movie with Bing Crosby and Danny Kay – is a Christmas movie.
“So, let’s check the boxes,” he begins.
"Does the movie take place during the Christmas holiday? Die Hard takes place entirely during Christmas. White Christmas, only the first scene and the final scene occur on Christmas, and they take place eight or ten years apart.
“Is the setting a Christmas party? Die Hard is entirely set at a Christmas party. White Christmas, only the final scene is a Christmas party.
“How many Christmas songs are in the movie? Die Hard has four: Let It Snow, Winter Wonderland, Christmas in Hollis, and Jingle Bells. White Christmas has only two Christmas songs: White Christmas, of course, and Snow, which is arguably not even a Christmas song, it’s just a weather song.”
Podcast host Al Horner went on to share the complete checklist on why Die Hard represents a more Christmassy movie than White Christmas – however he ultimately implored fans to make up their own mind.
“You be the judge which is more Christmassy,” he said.
De Souza’s remarks come a week after Die Hard director John McTiernan engaged in the debate.
“We hadn’t intended it to be a Christmas movie, but the joy that came from it is what turned it into a Christmas movie,” he said.
Doug Richardson, who has been involved in the writing and development of three Die Hard movies also believes it is a Christmas movie.
He told Den of Geek: “The argument that comes up is ‘What makes a Christmas movie? Does a Christmas movie have to have Santa Claus in it?’ Suddenly you are defining what a Christmas film is.”
“If it involves Christmas and if it is screened as a perennial every year by streaming services and broadcasters it’s a Christmas movie.”
Willis, however, disagrees, stating in 2018: “Die Hard is not a Christmas movie. It’s a god damn Bruce Willis movie!”
For anyone still on the fence, here are just a few reasons why Die Hard is a Christmas movie.