Like “Die Hard”: Action Star Gerard Butler Becomes a Firefighter in the Empire State Building

Gerard Butler is pushing his action career forward. He is now playing a firefighter in “Empire State,” who finds himself in the wrong place at the wrong time.

At the beginning of 2023, Hollywood star Gerard Butler caused a stir among his fans when asked about the status of the successful “Has Fallen” series. “Night Has Fallen,” the fourth installment, has been stuck in the film pipeline for several years without making progress. When asked about this, Butler revealed that he wants to take a break from playing Secret Service Agent Mike Banning. His current focus is on portraying ordinary people who must prove themselves in extraordinary situations. Just like his character, pilot Brodie Torrance, in the action film “Plane”:

“In a way, we need real heroes. Life is hard; it’s a form of escape. And I think it’s cool to watch movies like this, put yourself in these hellish and challenging scenarios, and then be able to come out of it, maybe with some ideas or just inspiration and a lot of fun. It’s great to make films that provide an [everyday] escape.”

With “Greenland: Migration” (the first part is available to stream on Amazon), he meets this personal standard. In this film, the 54-year-old once again plays family man John Garrity, who must try to keep his family (Morena Baccarin, Roger Dale Floyd) alive and protected after a devastating catastrophe. However, Butler’s latest film project will be much more realistic (via Deadline), reuniting him with “Den of Thieves” director Christian Gudegast. The two have just finished filming the sequel “Den of Thieves 2,” and Gudegast also wrote the screenplay for “London Has Fallen.”

Their third collaboration as director and lead actor/producer is a “Die Hard” knockoff titled “Empire State.” As one might guess, the plot takes place in New York’s Empire State Building, where members of a private military company take hostages. However, they haven’t accounted for former Navy SEAL and firefighter Rhett and his partner Dani, an NYPD police officer. The two must put their relationship crisis aside and take down the villains together.

Though it sounds somewhat formulaic, it could turn out to be a genuinely entertaining action-comedy. Confidence is bolstered by screenwriters S. Craig Zahler (“Bone Tomahawk”) and Brian Tucker (“Secret Invasion”). And the setting in the historic 381-meter-tall landmark in the Big Apple certainly offers ample opportunities for daring stunts.

Gerard Butler for the Whole Family: In Live-Action Adaptation of an Animated Classic Let’s be honest: with exceptions in the 2000s when Gerard Butler also did (romantic) comedies, most of his films aren’t exactly family-friendly. It’s different with the “How to Train Your Dragon” animated series, where he voiced the character Stoick the Vast in the English original. And he will do so again in the upcoming live-action adaptation – this time in person. Filming for this under director Dean DeBlois has already been completed. DeBlois brings a lot of experience, having been responsible for all the animated films. The German release date is June 12, 2025.

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