In the first half of 2013, two action thrillers dealt with an attack on the White House, yet another case of copycat films dueling at the box office. While both Antoine Fuqua’s Olympus Has Fallen and the Roland Emmerich-directed White House Down managed to turn a profit, the former’s more modest budget qualified it as the undisputed victor.
In Olympus Has Fallen, Gerard Butler channeled his inner John McClane as former presidential guard Mike Banning, who must rescue Aaron Eckhart’s President Asher from terrorists. We’ve known for a while that a sequel, titled London Has Fallen, was on its way, but now fans will have to wait a bit longer to catch the film in theaters.
Gramercy Pictures has announced that the Olympus Has Fallen sequel has been pushed back to a January 2016 release. The film was previously scheduled to hit theaters on October 2, 2015, pitting it directly against high-profile dramas like Ridley Scott’s The Martian and Robert Zemeckis’s The Walk.
By contrast, Babak Najafi is perhaps best known for directing episodes of TV’s Banshee, and the empty (so far) January slot essentially gives London Has Fallen the freedom to attract audiences without such steep competition. In addition to Butler, a number of cast members from the original film – including Eckhart and Morgan Freeman – are set to return for the sequel, which delves into an assassination plot during a gathering of world leaders.
The film has enough of an existing fanbase that it’s easy to see it becoming one of the winter’s biggest hits. After all, Taken 3 took a mid-January slot this year and wound up bringing in more than $325 million worldwide. Granted, that Liam Neeson franchise has a larger international fanbase, but London Has Fallen now offers a built-in audience as well as a European setting that will boost overseas interest. In any case, there is precedence for high-octane action sequels to thrive during what is traditionally known as the slow part of the movie-going year.
Are you disappointed that you have a few more months to wait for London Has Fallen, or do you think the film is better suited for release early next year? Let us know your thoughts in the comments section below.
London Has Fallen will now hit theaters on January 22, 2016.
Source: Gramercy Pictures
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