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Angel Has Fallen

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Angel Has Fallen
Theatrical release poster
Directed byRic Roman Waugh
Screenplay by
Story by
  • Creighton Rothenberger
  • Katrin Benedikt
Based on
  • Creighton Rothenberger
  • Katrin Benedikt
Produced by
CinematographyJules O'Loughlin
Edited byGabriel Fleming
Music byDavid Buckley
Distributed byLionsgate
Release dates
  • August 20, 2019 (2019-08-20) (Hollywood)
  • August 23, 2019 (2019-08-23) (United States)
Running time
121 minutes
CountryUnited States
Budget$40 million[1][2]
Box office$146.7 million[2]

Angel Has Fallen is a 2019 American political action thriller film directed by Ric Roman Waugh. It is the third installment in the Has Fallen film series, following Olympus Has Fallen (2013) and London Has Fallen (2016). The film stars Gerard Butler, Morgan Freeman, Jada Pinkett Smith, Lance Reddick, Tim Blake Nelson, Piper Perabo, Nick Nolte, and Danny Huston. The plot again follows United States Secret Service agent Mike Banning as he races against time to clear his name after being framed for a drone attack on the President of the United States, Allan Trumbull.

The film was officially announced in October 2016, and Roman Waugh was hired in July 2017. New members of the cast were added in early 2018, and filming began in February of that year around Bulgaria and the United Kingdom.

The film was released in the United States on August 23, 2019, by Lionsgate. It received mixed reviews from critics and grossed $146 million worldwide. Plans for future sequels and TV spin-offs are in development.


Secret Service agent Mike Banning undergoes training at a military facility in Virginia, owned by his former Army Ranger commanding officer Wade Jennings, now CEO of private military company Salient Global. He is recommended for the position of Secret Service Director by U.S President Allan Trumbull, to replace retiring director David Gentry, but hides the fact that he suffers from migraines and insomnia and takes painkillers to cope with chronic back pain from previous combat injuries.

While Trumbull is on a private fishing trip at Queen's Lake in Williamsburg, a swarm of armed drones attack and kills his protection detail, with only Banning surviving and saving him. Both are incapacitated, but Banning recovers while Trumbull is left in a coma. FBI agent Helen Thompson is presented with falsified evidence implicating Banning in the attack, leading to his arrest. En route to a detention facility, Banning's transport is ambushed but he escapes after killing the attackers and unmasking them as mercenaries from Salient Global with whom he partook in a training exercise. Realizing that Jennings has betrayed and framed him, he calls his wife Leah from a nearby gas station, letting her know he is alive and determined to expose the real perpetrator. The call alerts Thompson to his location, forcing him to steal a militia man's 18-wheeler truck while pursued by many police officers. Banning escapes after crashing the truck and eventually makes his way to his estranged father, Clay, who's been living off-grid in a cabin in the backwoods of White Hall, West Virginia.

At the White House, Vice President Martin Kirby, now acting president, tells the press that Banning is responsible for the assassination attempt with support from the Russian government. Banning and his father see Salient mercenaries approaching the house, and Clay detonates multiple explosives around the perimeter, killing the would-be attackers as he and Banning escape. They split up; Clay goes to Banning's house and saves Leah and Lynne from a kidnapping attempt by Wade's mercenaries. Finding the bodies of Jennings' gunmen lined up against Clay's cabin, Thompson deduces that Banning was being set up after all. Trumbull awakens from his coma and Kirby is revealed to be Jennings' secret co-conspirator, planning to retaliate for Trumbull's "attempted assassination" against Russia. Thompson and another agent, Ramirez, confront Jennings on an airfield, but he kills them both.

Banning reaches the hospital and turns himself in. Trumbull orders his release when he realizes that the Salient mercenaries are attempting to kill him and only Banning can keep him alive. Banning leads Trumbull to safety with help from Gentry and other loyal agents as Jennings' mercenaries increase the hospital's ICU's oxygen and nitrogen supply to unstable levels, causing an explosion that levels the hospital. Banning hides Trumbull and Gentry as Jennings' men pursue them. In the ensuing gun battle, Jennings and his men kill most of Trumbull's security detail, but Banning thwarts a flanking attempt and forces the mercenaries to retreat after they are delayed long enough to allow U.S. federal law enforcement officers to arrive. Jennings and his remaining men are gathering on the rooftop to escape in a helicopter but Banning destroys it with a grenade launcher. Although Jennings manages to survive the explosion, Banning fatally wounds him in a knife fight.

Banning is exonerated while Trumbull and Gentry arrest Kirby for treason and corruption, revealing that Jennings had kept detailed records of Kirby's involvement as an insurance policy, which were uncovered by Thompson. Clay decides to live with Banning and his family. Feeling guilty over his failure to protect Trumbull and concealing his ailments, Banning offers his resignation, but Trumbull forgives him and offers Banning the promotion to Director, which he proudly accepts.



On October 28, 2016, it was announced that a third Fallen installment, titled Angel Has Fallen, was in development, with Gerard Butler reprising his roles of both lead actor and producer.[10] On July 25, 2017, Ric Roman Waugh was announced as director.[11]

On January 10, 2018, Holt McCallany was set to play Wade Jennings, an ex-military turned head of a technology company.[12] However, he later had to drop out of his role due to scheduling conflicts with the show Mindhunter,[13] and was replaced by Danny Huston. A week later, Jada Pinkett Smith and Tim Blake Nelson were confirmed added, and filming was scheduled to start on February 7, 2018.[3][5] On February 13, 2018, Piper Perabo joined the cast.[6] On March 12, 2018, Lance Reddick was set to play Secret Service Director Gentry.[4] Aaron Eckhart, who had played president Benjamin Asher in the first two films, announced he would not return in his role. On March 21, 2018, Michael Landes was cast as White House Chief of Staff Sam Wilcox.[9] On January 22, 2019, David Buckley was announced as the film's composer, replacing Trevor Morris, who scored the previous two films.[14]

Filming on Angel Has Fallen commenced at Virginia Water Lake, and continued throughout the United Kingdom[15] and Bulgaria.[16] Filming also took place at Pinewood Studios, Bray Studios, Longcross Studios and Nu Boyana Film Studios.


The film was released in the United States on August 23, 2019.[8]


Box office[edit]

Angel Has Fallen grossed $69 million in the United States and Canada, and $77.6 million in other territories, for a worldwide total of $146.7 million.[2]

In the United States and Canada, the film was released alongside Overcomer and was projected to gross $13–15 million from 3,286 theaters in its opening weekend.[17][18] It made $7.9 million on its first day. This included $1.5 million from Thursday night previews, the highest of the series. It went on to debut to $21.3 million, finishing first and over-performing. It was Butler's first time topping the box office since 300 (2007), and was just below the opening of London Has Fallen ($21.6 million).[1] The film remained in first place the following weekend, grossing $11.8 million, as well as $3 million on Labor Day.[19] The film was finally dethroned in its third weekend, grossing $6 million and finishing second, behind newcomer It Chapter Two.[20]

Critical response[edit]

On Rotten Tomatoes, the film holds an approval rating of 39% based on 190 reviews, with an average rating of 5/10. The website's critical consensus reads: "Cut from the same rough cloth as its predecessors, Angel Has Fallen rounds out a mostly forgettable action trilogy in fittingly mediocre fashion."[21] On Metacritic, the film has a weighted average score of 45 out of 100, based on 33 critics, indicating "mixed or average reviews".[22] Audiences polled by CinemaScore gave the film an average grade of "A−" on an A+ to F scale, the same score earned by its predecessors, while those at PostTrak gave it an average 4.5 out of 5 stars and a 64% "definite recommend".[1]

Todd McCarthy of The Hollywood Reporter wrote that the film, "may not be appreciably better than the first two installments ..., but it's actually more fun — first and foremost because of a vastly amusing turn by Nick Nolte as Gerard Butler's eccentric Vietnam vet old coot father."[23] Ignatiy Vishnevetsky of The A.V. Club gave the film a grade C, and called it a "dramatic improvement" though was critical of the action sequences, saying, "they all fall victim to having too much repetitive editing and not enough kinetic energy, a problem that no amount of onscreen firepower, twisted wreckage, or offbeat overhead camera angles can solve."[24] David Ehrlich of IndieWire gave the film a "D+", specifying that "[w]ith Nolte as his bonkers dad, Gerard Butler's mediocre action franchise and his mediocre American accent find a mediocre conclusion."[25]


In November 2019, series producer Alan Siegel announced plans for a fourth, fifth and sixth film, as well as local-language TV spin-offs that would tie-in with the theatrical features.[26] In November 2020, it was revealed at the American Film Market that a fourth film was in development, with Butler returning, titled Night Has Fallen.[27][28]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ a b c D'Alessandro, Anthony (August 25, 2019). "'Angel Has Fallen' Still Ascending Close To 'London' With $20M; Tarantino's 'Hollywood' Beating 'Basterds' – Saturday AM B.O." Deadline Hollywood. Retrieved August 25, 2019.
  2. ^ a b c "Angel Has Fallen (2019)". Box Office Mojo. IMDb. Retrieved November 1, 2019.
  3. ^ a b Fleming, Mike Jr. (January 18, 2018). "Jada Pinkett Smith, Daughter Willow & Mom Adrienne Set Facebook Talk Show: Sundance". Deadline. Retrieved January 19, 2018.
  4. ^ a b Lilday, Gregg (March 12, 2018). "Lance Reddick Joins Gerard Butler in 'Angel Has Fallen'". The Hollywood Reporter. Retrieved March 12, 2018.
  5. ^ a b N'Duka, Amanda (February 23, 2018). "Tim Blake Nelson Boards 'Angel Has Fallen'". Deadline. Retrieved February 27, 2018.
  6. ^ a b N'Duka, Amanda (February 13, 2018). "Piper Perabo Boards Gerard Butler-Toplined Sequel 'Angel Has Fallen'". Deadline. Retrieved February 13, 2018.
  7. ^ McNary, Dave (March 20, 2018). "Nick Nolte, Matt Dillon to Star in Drama 'Honey in the Head'". Variety. Retrieved March 21, 2018.
  8. ^ a b Kilday, Gregg (November 29, 2018). "Gerard Butler's 'Angel Has Fallen' Gets Summer 2019 Release Date". The Hollywood Reporter. Retrieved November 29, 2018.
  9. ^ a b N'Duka, Amanda (March 21, 2018). "Michael Landes Joins 'Angel Has Fallen'; Craig Di Francia Cast In 'The Irishman'". Deadline. Retrieved March 21, 2018.
  10. ^ Lodderhose, Diana (October 26, 2016). "Gerard Butler Heads To Millennium Films' Threequel 'Angel Has Fallen'". Deadline. Retrieved November 2, 2016.
  11. ^ Kroll, Justin (July 25, 2017). "'Shot Caller' Director Boards 'Olympus Has Fallen' Sequel 'Angel Has Fallen'". Variety. Retrieved July 27, 2017.
  12. ^ Patten, Dominic (January 10, 2018). "'Mindhunter's Holt McCallany Joins Gerard Butler In 'Angel Has Fallen'". Deadline. Retrieved January 11, 2018.
  13. ^ Patten, Dominic (August 21, 2018). "'Mindhunter's Holt McCallany Making French Film Debut With 'Le Dindon'". Deadline. Retrieved August 27, 2018.
  14. ^ "David Buckley Scoring Ric Roman Waugh's 'Angel Has Fallen'". Film Music Reporter. Retrieved January 23, 2019.
  15. ^ "Angel Has Fallen in UK cinemas now". Filmoria.co.uk. August 23, 2019. Retrieved August 23, 2019.
  16. ^ Demony, Catarina (February 27, 2018). "Angel Has Fallen filming: Preparations under way for shooting in Virginia Water as crews spotted at popular beauty spot". Get Surrey. Retrieved February 27, 2018.
  17. ^ McClintock, Pamela (August 21, 2019). "Box Office: 'Ready or Not' Gets the Widest Release in Fox Searchlight's History". The Hollywood Reporter. Retrieved August 21, 2019.
  18. ^ Rubin, Rebecca (August 21, 2019). "'Ready or Not,' 'Angel Has Fallen' Enter Box Office Race". Variety. Retrieved August 21, 2019.
  19. ^ D'Alessandro, Anthony (September 1, 2019). "'Angel Has Fallen' Still In Flight At Sluggish Labor Day Box Office With $16M+ 4-Day". Deadline Hollywood. Retrieved September 2, 2019.
  20. ^ D'Alessandro, Anthony (September 8, 2019). "'It Chapter Two' Stays Afloat With $92M Opening, Still 2nd Best For Horror & September Release – Early Sunday AM Update". Deadline Hollywood. Retrieved September 8, 2019.
  21. ^ "Angel Has Fallen (2019)". Rotten Tomatoes. Fandango. Retrieved October 10, 2021.
  22. ^ "Angel Has Fallen reviews". Metacritic. Retrieved April 9, 2020.
  23. ^ McCarthy, Todd (August 21, 2019). "'Angel Has Fallen': Film Review". The Hollywood Reporter.
  24. ^ Vishnevetsky, Ignatiy (August 21, 2019). "Only in a franchise this bad could Angel Has Fallen look like an improvement". The A. V. Club.
  25. ^ Ehrlich, David (August 21, 2019). "'Angel Has Fallen' Review: A Deranged Nick Nolte Meets Hollywood's Laziest Action Franchise". IndieWire. Penske Business Media. Retrieved August 21, 2019.
  26. ^ Grater, Tom (November 8, 2019). "'Angel Has Fallen' Producer Alan Siegel: Expect More Sequels & Local Language Spin-Offs". Deadline Hollywood. Retrieved November 9, 2019.
  27. ^ "Gerard Butler Returns for Action Sequel 'Night Has Fallen', Millennium Launches for AFM". November 9, 2020.
  28. ^ McNary, Dave (November 9, 2020). "Millennium's Jeffrey Greenstein Unveils a Fourth 'Has Fallen' as AFM Launches". Variety. Retrieved November 9, 2020.

External links[edit]