Dennis Hayden chats about his work-related on die Hard, activity Jackson, an additional 48 Hrs. And also more!


Dennis Hayden is an gibbs of part repute with impressive 50 films roles come his name as well as countless TV and commercial credits.

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However, most action movie fans will recognise him together Eddie, the critical of Hans Gruber’s henchman to accomplish his machine in Die Hard and also the man who bears a more than passing same to Huey Lewis.

One that Hollywood’s go-to heavies in movies like Action Jackson and Another 48 Hrs, Hayden kindly take it time out his busy schedule to talk around all points Die Hard, his life, how he obtained into acting and also the moment he come face-to-face with his popular music rock doppelganger, Huey Lewis himself.

Early action Beginnings


UMAC: What make you decision you want to be actor?

Dennis: I thrived up in Kansas on a pig farm through 3 older brothers and one younger brother, and also a tiny sister through Down syndrome and also a really tough Mom. My Dad was an alcoholic who likewise suffered indigenous PTSD. He dealt with in WWII under Patton. The course, back then the military just sent everyone residence when the war ended. There was no expertise of PTSD or therapy. So, also though he love us, he would periodically see demons and lash out at the family. Once I remained in grade school, pat acting and being a course clown aided me come forget about other problems. One day mine brother brought home a black and white TV indigenous the dump and made the work. The an initial show I observed was dubbed the Whirly Birds and my brother invoice told me the actors made great money. I thought,” I carry out that every day at school, and also that’s what I’m going come do once I flourish up!”

UMAC: You played football to a high level – to be there ever a opportunity you might have turn pro?

Dennis: football was also a method for me to channel my youthful anger and also get to take hot showers, a actual luxury! as soon as I was a freshman, the principal of Girard High institution pulled me off the peak of a senior who had picked a fight through me. It turned the end that the an elderly I to be beating increase was their star fullback. I finished up as All-State tackle and also had part scholarship offers. Yet the Vietnam draft got in the way. I had actually a short number therefore I had actually to report for induction. In the end, the military determined that I dealt with ‘TOO WELL!” ~ MP’s had to break up a fight in between me and also 3 maritime recruits! You’ll have to read mine upcoming memoirs for the story.

UMAC: did you do it played a many “heavies” under the years – were you ever before concerned around being typecast or something you just embraced?

Dennis: I started out play heavies in my at an early stage theater days and also moved as much as playing lead good guys. As soon as you’re six-foot-four and rugged, they constantly want come categorize you. I taken on all type of acting, Commercials, Television and also Film. Ago in the seventies and also the eighties, a the majority of actors would say, ” I’m only a film actor” and also others would say ” I’m only a TV actor” and I would certainly say “Pay me and also I will be over there on time and also smiling.”

Die Hard’s can be fried Legacy


UMAC: What carry out you placed the enduring popular of Die difficult down to?

Dennis: I credit transaction the popularity to the authors Steven Souza and Jeb Stuart for writing a an excellent script. Once I check out it because that the very first time i remember thinking that it was going to be a big hit. Then when I watched the stormy cut, ns knew it to be going to it is in a block-buster. Yet what ns didn’t understand was the it was going to it is in the number one Christmas movie of all time. And I didn’t understand it would be in the nationwide Archives. This movie officially is forever and also I get to be a big part the it!

UMAC: just how did you land the gig beat Eddie in dice Hard?

Dennis: I had actually just finished” activity Jackson” with Carl Weathers. And he had just came off the Rocky movies and also Predator had actually just to be released, and now he was starring in his own film.

I got a speak to from Jackie Burch, the spreading agent, to go to Joel Silver, the producer for Die Hard. Therefore I reviewed to Fox Studios. As soon as I to walk in, Jackie handed me a script and said, “You are analysis for the part of Eddie.” Joel looked increase from his desk and forcefully said,” he doesn’t have to read for me! Dennis is a good actor! He’s one of the stars of action Jackson. I simply wanted girlfriend to meet him.” ns said,” Thanks, Joel” and left. However I wished that hadn’t been so hard on her. I thought that she would certainly never actors me in an additional film. Ns was right.

UMAC: the sounds favor a the majority of changes and also rewrites happened throughout filming on Die Hard. Did you have any kind of other present or scene that ended up getting cut or changed?

Dennis: when I check out the original script, ns realized that Eddie obtained killed around half-way through the movie. The movie wasn’t reserved to start for a month or so. I was down at the Butler structure recording studio visiting a friend and also I discussed that with all this movies ns in the I can use a publicist. My friend pointed out that there to be a publicist down the hall. Once I was gaining ready to leave, i ran in there and asked she what sort of clients she had. She claimed that she had actually only done music clients like Herbie Hancock yet that she want to dabble in that field. Ns told she that i was looking for a publicist and also that I just got actors in a movie called Die Hard. She claimed that she future brother-in-law was among the writers. I said,” I obtain killed about half way through the movie. If you can get Steven E de Souza to make me the last man John McClane kills, I will hire you together my publicist.” A main or so later she dubbed me and said, “How about the critical one McClane shoots, next to the critical to obtain shot?” She became my new publicist, and the remainder is history.

By the method Eddie didn’t Die!! He had actually a stole plate in his head indigenous the war. So, when McClane shot that in the head, it just knocked Eddie out. He acquired up during all the chaos and also stuck come the original plan and also stole one emergency vehicle. He eventually made his to escape to main America wherein he is plan to take it revenge top top McClane in Die Hard 6 or 7.

Bruce Willis and Alan Rickman


UMAC: What to be it prefer to job-related with Bruce Willis and Alan Rickman?

Dennis: Bruce was an excellent to work-related with. That was functioning Moonlighting in the day and then us shot at night. He was really into his work. When he would present up on collection he constantly had this grin ~ above his confront like the was thinking of other funny. That was also planning his wedding v Demi Moore. I remember at some point we had actually a delay, and Bruce got up and started law a comedy act. He had actually us all in stiches. Alan and I hit that off. He preferred my nation background. It was his an initial film. He knew the I came from theater and also with that we bonded. I had tons of movie under mine belt. He had read Joel’s following film roadway House, and also thought I would be a great heavy in the one. He visited Joel and also told that Hayden would be an excellent in that. Joel even carried Swayze the end to the set to meet me. He didn’t understand that we had actually known one an additional for years. Yet when the Director placed us in the room together I to be so much bigger than Patrick. The director said,” No way. ” 

Alan and I continued to be in touch and we actually made efforts to it is in in one another’s films. But the time never worked out. Awesome guy. 

UMAC: go you acquire a sense Bruce Willis was destined for large things?

Dennis: Yes, ns did. He to be hilarious in Moonlighting. I observed him in remote Date and he to be awesome in that one. Ns tell human being if you desire to see a funny movie check out remote Date.

UMAC: What was her favourite scene to film in the movie and also why?

Dennis: There’s one through Reginald Veljohnson. We had actually just come ago from lunch, which to be midnight. Everyone was wait on Joel when John McTiernan, the director said,” Let’s simply shoot one for rehearsal if we’re wait on Joel.” So, Reginald and I began at the front door and also walked and talked and also did the whole scene. Once we acquired done john said,” Cut! that’s perfect.” when Joel got there, John confirmed him the step on the Playback monitor. Joel said,” Next! us are moving on.” It was the just one-take scene in the entirety movie.

UMAC: What to be the setting like on collection during filming?

Dennis: There were a couple of egos in ~ first. I retained reminding them exactly how lucky they to be to it is in in together a great film. The egos eventually left, and also we all had actually a blast for the next 3 months. Ns still keep in touch with Al Leong and also Hans Buhringer. A couple of of the guys have moved top top to” Die Hard Heaven,”… Gary Roberts, Alan Rickman, Wilhelm von Homburg, Paul Gleason.

Action Movie acting 101


UMAC: Actors have actually been known to construct their own backstories for your characters. Go you carry out that for Eddie?

Dennis: i go ago to the author and try to check out his intent and that has always paid turn off for me. Nick Nolte is one old friend. When we worked the same theater, that would obtain intense on back story. I always believed in knowing your stuff inside and out. That’s what makes great acting

UMAC: yes a feeling of armed forces efficiency about Hans Gruber’s gang. Was that something that simply came naturally, or did you guys have to do a little of team bonding on collection and beyond?

Dennis: Joel hired one of the top armed forces trainers. We had two weeks of armed forces training to find out weaponry. Ns was a herbal at that so the trainer and also I bonded prior to the movie started. I had actually a great time going into buildings and shooting pop-up targets. I can do a somersault if loading mine Uzi and bounce up v a complete mag, prepared for the next target. Reminded me of playing as a kid. Once we finished, the trainer called me the he had trained every bad ass ~ above the planet, however that i was the best. Ns didn’t recognize what come say, for this reason I stated it’s because I had actually you together a trainer. Then he said, “But friend did that in cowboy boots! and if you ever before want to do this because that real, i can acquire you job-related tomorrow!” ns said,” No man, I’m just an actor!”

UMAC: Eddie survives longer than most of the henchman in the movie – do you take it a strange sense of proud from that? ns would.

Dennis: Yes, i take pride in that. Prefer I stated in an previously question, obtaining the script change was quite an accomplishment!

UMAC: You’re ultimately killed through a bullet to the head – was that a tricky shot to acquire right?

Dennis: once we collection up the shot, a guy had a punch gun with a wax ball in it v red dye. However the guy had actually PTSD, so once Bruce would certainly pull his gun and shoot, he would jump. He shot me in the eye once and other spots on mine face. Each time i would need to hit that hard tile floor and also then we would need to clean me up, and re-tape the gun come Bruce’s back, and also start over. This went on because that 15 or 16 takes. Finally, Joel came over and said, ” We’ll have to do this an additional time with a various blow pistol person.” So, a couple weeks later we re-shot it every again. ~ 5 or 6 time they obtained the shot the they liked and we relocated on. A few years ago, in the two-disc DVD they had all those head shooting takes. You deserve to watch them v or there is no music.

UAMC great John McTiernan


UMAC: What was man McTiernan prefer as a director?

Dennis: john was great. After i did my one-take scene v Reginald, I might do no wrong with John. I ran into him at the screening of “Another 48 Hours” and also he come over and also we talked because that awhile. It was a star-studded night, and also I psychic his new wife, in ~ the time, come walking over and said, “Why space you hanging out through him? There are stars come rub elbows with!” and also drag him off to hang v the A list.

UMAC: How regularly do Die Hard fans recognise you? does it stroked nerves you at all or execute you choose it? 

Dennis: Sure, I choose it. Being well-known for your arts is always nice. When the movie come out i flew earlier to Kansas and went come the Veterans hospital and also convinced the night nurse to let me take my Dad out to see it. He had actually fallen turn off the wagon pretty poor after my mom passed through Cancer. I had never to be to a movie through my Dad. When it was over and we were walking out, the said, “That was rather the adventure.” climate someone said,” Look it is the guy in the movie,” and also they all want autographs. I remember my Dad looking at me through pride. It’s one of my fondest memories.

UMAC: and what about those Huey Lewis comparisons? as soon as did girlfriend become mindful of the Huey Lewis thing? have actually you ever before met him?

Dennis: A long time earlier I to be singing ago up top top Tanya Tucker’s album, TNT. Several civilization told me that there was a band down the hall called,” Clover” and that the lead singer looked favor me. I assumed to myself,” Sure, ns hear that all the time.” Later, I was in the bathroom and also this male came wade in and I had actually to do a twin take. He to be a much shorter version of me. Us both laughed and also introduced ourselves and also went back to our studios. Year later, Huey had a fight album through his new band. People started coming as much as me wanting my autograph. I would certainly say, “Who execute you think ns am?” If they said,” Huey Lewis,” I would either say, “Sorry not correct guy,” or just sign “Huey” for this reason they would leave me alone!

Then I started doing rather a few hit films and also commercials and also TV and also making my very own name. And also then as soon as ” Die Hard” came out, all of a sudden, i was the male who looks favor Huey Lewis. Among the major newspapers also said,” Huey was good in Die Hard.” ns tried to relocate up and also get a enlarge Agent, but they retained saying,” that’s not you the Huey Lewis.” This was prior to the internet and IMDB, and also it hadn’t to be released on VHS, so ns couldn’t show them.

And climate years later, after Die Hard became among the height Christmas movies, Seth MacFarlane walk a Die Hard parody on the Cleveland Show. They supplied my personality from Die Hard and dubbed him, “the male who looks prefer Huey Lewis.” then to further rub it in, they hired Huey Lewis to perform the Voice-over on my character. So, every Christmas, Huey gets nobility checks and also I acquire nothing.

Action Jackson and also Another 48 Hrs.


UMAC: friend were additionally in action Jackson with Carl Weathers. That film to be a lot of fun. Why perform you think the isn’t together fondly remembered by fans?

Dennis: It simply needed a Christmas theme! LOL! It’s tho pretty popular. I gain asked about it every the time. The director, Craig Baxley to be the ideal to occupational with. Had a blast on that film. ” exactly how do you favor your ribs?” LOL

UMAC: and then there’s one more 48 hrs – was that a funny film to make? Eddie Murphy must have actually been make a most jokes on set.

Dennis: My great friend Andrew Divoff, the lead bad guy, claims “hey Dennis, Walter Hill is doing a huge action picture and you have to see if there are any kind of parts left.” So, I went over to paramount Studios and also walked in. That was back when you might walk in a studio. I found Walter’s office and walked in and also said, “Do you remember me? ns met you v Nick Nolte.” He said “yes, but. It’s been cast”. So, ns thanked him and left my pic and also resume. Around two weeks later on he called and said, “I wrote you a part, but don’t tell Nick, I want it to it is in a surprise.” the turned the end awesome. We had actually a blast! Eddie was hilarious. Every time he sees me, he simply points at me and also laughs and also says, “Hayden!” 

UMAC: Actors prefer yourself have tendency to audition for a most roles. Room there any kind of notable components in major movies you came close come getting?

Dennis: as soon as I to be doing activity Jackson, the Producer Joel Silver says to me, “Where to be you once I was casting Predator?” I stated “in your office analysis for it, and you gave the part to a wrestler, Jesse Ventura.” He didn’t know just how to respond to that.

UMAC: If you could adjust anything indigenous your Die Hard experience, what would certainly it be and why?

Dennis: i think i did all I might do at the time. I gained my role expanded, the was a biggie.

The latest from the an excellent Dennis Hayden


UMAC: What else are you approximately up the moment? A many of human being will have actually seen girlfriend in those Old freckles ads.

Dennis: I’m just takin the easy. I gained a tiny ranch in the country and I still keep in touch with a few directors. We shall view what the future will certainly bring. Functioning on a book and also a pair of screenplays.

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Just signed a brand-new contract through Old Spice. I am in a brand-new book on Amazon called Born to be Bad around a lot of us bad guys in film, and a new book coming the end in November referred to as Die Hard the Ultimate intuitive History.

What’s your favorite Dennis Hayden activity movie personality role? let us recognize in the comment or top top our facebook page!