US actor Bruce Willis says he is glad to be back doing action films – but at 52, he admitted in Japan that surviving Die Hard 4.0 was no easy task.
“It was a really hard film to make,” he said today at a Tokyo news conference. “But it turned out very well.”
The latest instalment in the Die Hard series revolves around a planned cyber-terror attack on the United States. Willis teamed up with Justin Long, who plays a computer hacker, to thwart the evil Mai – Hong Kong star Maggie Quigley, better known as Maggie Q.
Willis noted that the movie’s director, Len Wiseman, was just 16 years old when the first Die Hard was released in 1988 – evidence that, as the name suggests, the movie has staying power.
“Now you can see me as a 32-year-old actor and as a 52-year-old actor,” he said.
Audiences can also see Willis beaten up by a woman.
“This is the first time I’ve fought against a woman in a film and lost,” Willis said.
He said the fight was filmed in a huge mock-up of a lift shaft, which was five storeys high and cost $1.5m (€1.1m) to build.
“It’s the biggest fight in the film,” he said. “We even drove a car into it.”
The film marks a return to action movies for Willis, the quintessential tough, silent hero.
After Die Hard with a Vengeance, the third movie in the series, Willis won acclaim for his dramatic skills in “he Sixth Sense, a ghost/love story.
“It’s been 12 years,” Willis said of the Die Hard franchise. “I told myself I was going to take a break from action films until the genre reinvented itself. We were just waiting for a good film to come around.”
The movie premieres in Japan on June 23. It opens in the US and elsewhere on June 27.