Hard to Die
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|Hard to Die|
Hard to Die VHS cover
|Directed by||Jim Wynorski|
|Produced by||Jim Wynorski
Roger Corman (uncredited)
|Written by||Mark Thomas McGee
James B. Rogers
|Music by||Chuck Cirino|
|Distributed by||New Horizons Home Video|
Hard to Die (also known as Tower of Terror) is a 1990 American action comedy film written by Mark Thomas McGee and James B. Rogers, directed by Jim Wynorski, and starring Gail Harris and Melissa Moore. The film features a similar storyline and many of the same actresses from Wynorski's previous film Sorority House Massacre II: Nighty Nightmare.
The film was released as a direct-to-video film in 1990, but it was released theatrically in 1992 under the name Tower of Terror and received an NC-17 rating.
A group of women are about to experience the most horrifying night of their lives - trapped in a deserted skyscraper, with a crazed killer at their heels. Soon, their innocent overtime duty becomes an action-filled evening of terror and suspense - yet they choose to defy the odds and fight back... trading fear for firepower in a high-stakes, all-out fight to the death.
- Gail Harris .... Dawn Grant (as Robyn Harris)
- Karen Mayo-Chandler .... Diana (as Lindsay Taylor)
- Deborah Dutch .... Jackie (as Debra Dare)
- Melissa Moore .... Tess
- Bridget Carney .... Shayna
- Toni Naples .... Sgt. Phyllis Shawley (credited as Karen Chorak)
- Jürgen Baum .... Lt. Mike Block
- Bob Sheridan .... Cop In Lobby
- Carolet Girard .... Fifi Latour
- Peter Spellos .... Orville Ketchum
- Don Key .... Brad Plympton
- Forrest J Ackerman .... Dr. Ed Newton
- James B. Rogers .... Messenger (as J.B. Rogers)
- Domonic Muir .... Larry Bronkowski
- Eric Baum .... Agent
- Amelia Sheridan .... Helga
- Don Peterson .... Porno Husband
- Kelli Maroney .... Porno Wife (as D. Mason Keener)
- Greg Lauoi .... Porno Cameraman
- Cirsten Weldon .... Agent's Girlfriend
- Monique Gabrielle .... Chow Down Girl (as Lucy Burnett)
- Ronald V. Borst .... Pedestrian
- Jim Wynorski .... Porno Director (uncredited)
Jim Wynorski had made a film for Julie Corman called Sorority House Massacre II. Corman's husband Roger wanted Wynorski to remake it, using the same story and cast. Wynroski says "When Roger Corman saw what I did for his wife in just seven days, he wanted me to do the same for him."
Corman wanted to re-use the sets which had just been used for Corporate Affairs (1990), which consisted of a reception area and a few suites. According to Mark Thomas McGee, who was hired to work on the script:
This change in locale presented Jim and I with a problem—how to get the women out of their clothes and into their underwear. (Try to imagine someone like David Lean or William Wyler wrestling with a dilemma like this.) Not that women would ever run around in their under- wear regardless of the location, but it was a little easier to swallow when they were in a sorority house. I asked Jim if it would be too much of a problem to redress the reception area to make it seem like we’re on different levels of a high rise instead of a single level office. Jim liked that idea because it opened up all sorts of possibilities for us. It not only gave the ladies more room to run and hide from the killer, it also meant (and this was the genius of the stroke) that they could discover a lingerie company on another level. The sequence where these ladies become so excited when they discover these frilly and sexy undergarments (and just can’t wait to try them on) is as ridiculous and infantile as anything you can imagine. But half-naked women is just about all that a film like this has to offer.
McGee says he had a week to write a script. He spent give days going in a different direction, but then realised Corman genuinely wanted a true remake, and spent two days redrafting.
Wynorski says with the film, "I took Orville’s hardships to even further extremes."
At one stage the film as known as Tower of Terror before becoming Hard to Die.
- Sellers, Christian (19 April 2009). "Exclusive Interview With Cult Filmmaker JIM WYNORSKI". Retro Slashers.
- McGee, Mark Thomas (2016). Katzman, Nicholson and Corman - Shaping Hollywood's Future. Bear Manor Media. pp. 249–250.