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Novel That Inspired 'Die Hard' Returns to Print After 20 Years

Roderick Thorp’s “Nothing Lasts Forever” was adapted into the iconic franchise's first film.

Roderick Thorp Nothing Lasts Forever - P 2013
Graymalkin Media

Die Hard has returned, and not just to movie theaters. The book that inspired the original film is back in print after 20 years.

Late author Roderick Thorp’s Nothing Lasts Forever is being released in trade paperback and ebook by Graymalkin Media to mark the 25th anniversary of its original publication.

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The book was adapted into 1988’s Die Hard. But before Bruce Willis brought New York cop John McClane to life, he was an idea scrawled in Thorp’s notebook. (The cop is named Joe Leland in the novel.) The ebook includes copies of Thorp’s notes, the first time they have been published. He wrote them while living in Laurel Canyon, his house overlooking a high-rise building on the Wilshire Corridor. (That building became the inspiration for the one taken over by terrorists in the book.)

“Just as there are no flashbacks, there are no shifts in point of view. Everything is told -- discovered -- from Leland’s interior,” Thorp wrote in his treatment for the novel.

Before Willis ultimately took the role, a number of other stars turned it down. The first to pass was Frank Sinatra, who played Joe Leland in The Detective (1968), based on Thorp's novel of the same name. Other stars who declined to play the now iconic role included Arnold Schwarzenegger, Sylvester Stallone, Burt Reynolds, Richard Gere, Harrison Ford and Mel Gibson.

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"Die Hard very closely follows the book, so reading Nothing Lasts Forever gives fans the chance to enjoy the thrill of the Die Hard story in more detail, experience the scenes that didn't make it into the film, and discover the novel's shocking ending," said Graymalkin Media Owner and CEO David Zindel.

The latest film in the enduring action franchise, A Good Day to Die Hard, had the biggest opening to date of 2013. Nothing Lasts Forever is on sale now.