A bankruptcy hearing is not a typical venue for announcing plans for upcoming films, but that’s where Die Hard director John McTiernan divulged that he has a big screen project titled Warbirds in the works, with John Travolta set to star.
McTiernan’s life sounds like the plot of one of his films. The director responsible for a long list of famous action flicks, including Predator and The Hunt for Red October, fell on hard times, serving 10 months in jail for lying to law enforcement regarding a wiretapping investigation, and recently filing for bankruptcy.
In a hearing on Aug. 27, McTiernan wanted to show that he could raise the money to pay off his creditors without liquidating his Wyoming ranch. He chose to disclose details of a major Hollywood comeback, including plans for the above-mentioned John Travolta film, Warbirds, which he described as a Top Gun-type movie. He also mentioned a project called Red Squad and a third screenplay, recently completed, that could serve as the basis for another production. McTiernan wrote all three scripts himself, asserting that he is returning to his roots as a screenwriter.
“The basic idea is that I want to reestablish my career and rebuild my life,” he said.
On the subject of the director’s earning potential, his attorney, James Belcher, said at one point: “The evidence will show his earning potential dwarfs my concept of reality—north of $2.5 million on the projects he has on the table. One of them is sealed and in the bank.”