Die Hard writer Steven E de Souza has made a definitive argument explaining why the film is in fact a Christmas movie.
Comparing the action thriller to Bing Crosby’s White Christmas, the screenwriter went through a checklist of “Christmas Movie or Not” characteristics on the Script Apart podcast.
“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 Crosbie and Danny Kay, is a Christmas movie,” de Souza began. “So let’s check the boxes.
“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.”
He went on: “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.”
The checklist went on to look over facts including governmental incompetence, the differences in terms of German ringleaders, the identities of the broadcaster with hidden agendas and the body count.
“You be the judge which is more Christmassy,” de Souza told podcast host Al Horner, then saying he would share the checklist – which you can check out above.
Last week, Die Hard director John McTiernan also weighed into 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.
Bruce Willis shared his thoughts in 2018, saying categorically: “Die Hard is not a Christmas movie. It’s a god damn Bruce Willis movie!”