News / Arts & Entertainment

Washington Faces Terror Attack in 'White House Down'

Washington Faces Terror Attack in 'White House Down' i
X
June 28, 2013 8:41 PM
Filmmaker Roland Emmerich, known for his 1996 blockbuster, Independence Day, is now tackling the destruction of the White House and an impending nuclear attack by terrorists. The film, wildly entertaining with action sequences, brisk dialogue and a heart-rending father-daughter relationship at its core, is reminiscent of 1980s and 90s action hits without today's darkness. VOA's Penelope Poulou has more.
Penelope Poulou
Filmmaker Roland Emmerich, known for his 1996 blockbuster, Independence Day, is now tackling the destruction of the White House and an impending nuclear attack by terrorists.  The film,  White House Down, is wildly entertaining with action sequences, brisk dialogue and a heart-rending father-daughter relationship at its core. It is reminiscent of 1980s and 90s action hits without today's darkness.

This is not the first time Roland Emmerich is destroying the White House.  In 1996, he  blew it to smithereens in Independence Day. Back then, the enemy was aliens. Now, it's an inside job.

A terrorist group is planning to take the president hostage and access America's weapons of mass destruction. But all is not lost. John Cale, a soldier fresh out of Afghanistan, is visiting the White House for a job interview.

His estranged daughter, Emily, is visiting with him. What happens next is predictable. In the chaos, John and Emily are separated. Cale races to save his daughter and, of course, the president.

Actor Channing Tatum, left, and director Roland Emmerich attend the "White House Down" premiere at the Ziegfeld Theatre, June 25, 2013 in New York.Actor Channing Tatum, left, and director Roland Emmerich attend the "White House Down" premiere at the Ziegfeld Theatre, June 25, 2013 in New York.
x
Actor Channing Tatum, left, and director Roland Emmerich attend the "White House Down" premiere at the Ziegfeld Theatre, June 25, 2013 in New York.
Actor Channing Tatum, left, and director Roland Emmerich attend the "White House Down" premiere at the Ziegfeld Theatre, June 25, 2013 in New York.
Channing Tatum, as John Cale, is in super shape as he goes through leaps and bounds to protect the Commander in Chief. 

“There is a 25 foot drop I didn't do. But I did most of them. Yeah!" he admitted, referring to the stunts he performed.  

Tatum, who was named the “Sexiest Man Alive” by People Magazine, approaches stardom with humor and humility.
 
“I don't know. I don't sit there pondering that question, really, I just sort...keep working,"  he said.

Actor Jamie Foxx attends the "White House Down" premiere at the Ziegfeld Theatre, June 25, 2013 in New York.Actor Jamie Foxx attends the "White House Down" premiere at the Ziegfeld Theatre, June 25, 2013 in New York.
x
Actor Jamie Foxx attends the "White House Down" premiere at the Ziegfeld Theatre, June 25, 2013 in New York.
Actor Jamie Foxx attends the "White House Down" premiere at the Ziegfeld Theatre, June 25, 2013 in New York.
In White House Down, Oscar-winner Jamie Foxx plays James Sawyer,  the president of the United States. He said it's not a take on President Obama.

“We didn't want to do an impersonation of him because we don't want people to think that's how Obama would react in this situation because we don't know,” Foxx explains.

Maggie Gyllenhaal plays special agent Carol Finnerty.

“To come here to see the Capitol Building felt like I want to go up as close as I can get," she said, adding that visiting Washington helped her connect with her character. "To see the First Amendment written in stone on the Newseum, and to walk up and read it and think I absolutely believe in that! And I think Carol Finnerty is like that.”

Cast members, from left, Joey King, Channing Tatum, Maggie Gyllenhaal, Jamie Foxx and Garcelle Beauvais attend the "White House Down" premiere at the Ziegfeld Theatre, June 25, 2013 in New York.Cast members, from left, Joey King, Channing Tatum, Maggie Gyllenhaal, Jamie Foxx and Garcelle Beauvais attend the "White House Down" premiere at the Ziegfeld Theatre, June 25, 2013 in New York.
x
Cast members, from left, Joey King, Channing Tatum, Maggie Gyllenhaal, Jamie Foxx and Garcelle Beauvais attend the "White House Down" premiere at the Ziegfeld Theatre, June 25, 2013 in New York.
Cast members, from left, Joey King, Channing Tatum, Maggie Gyllenhaal, Jamie Foxx and Garcelle Beauvais attend the "White House Down" premiere at the Ziegfeld Theatre, June 25, 2013 in New York.
Filmmaker Roland Emmerich said despite the grand sets and special effects, his film is, at its core, about a father trying to reconnect with his daughter - a throwback to 80s and 90s action flicks.    

"It's not as fun anymore like it was, like with movies such as Indiana Jones," Emmerich said, regretfully.  "Raiders of Lost Ark was one of the most fun movies I have ever seen in my life. These kind of movies are missing [today].”

White House Down is a wild ride in the heart of the nation's capital. It toys with the hypothesis of what would happen to the world if the White House were compromised.

You May Like

Obama: I Will Do 'Everything I Can' to Close Guantanamo

US president says prison continues 'to inspire jihadists and extremists around the world' More

Sierra Leone Educates on Safe Ebola Burials

Also, country is improving at rapid response to isolated outbreaks, but health workers need to be even faster, officials say More

Religion Aside, Christmas Gains Popularity in Communist Vietnam

Increasingly wealthy Vietnamese embrace holiday due to its non-religious glamor, commercial appeal More

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
US Decision on Cuba Underscores Divisions Among Miami Cubansi
X
Sharon Behn
December 19, 2014 9:34 PM
For decades, older, more conservative Cubans have been gathering at Café Versailles on the corner of Calle Ocho to eat Cuban food and talk politics. After hearing of President Barack Obama’s decision, a number of them gathered in front of the café with posters to protest. VOA's Sharon Behn reports on the situation.
Video

Video US Decision on Cuba Underscores Divisions Among Miami Cubans

For decades, older, more conservative Cubans have been gathering at Café Versailles on the corner of Calle Ocho to eat Cuban food and talk politics. After hearing of President Barack Obama’s decision, a number of them gathered in front of the café with posters to protest. VOA's Sharon Behn reports on the situation.
Video

Video Three Cities Bid for Future Obama Presidential Library

President Barack Obama still has two years left in his term in office, but the effort to establish his post-presidential library is already underway. The bid for the Obama Presidential Library is down to four locations in three states -- New York, Hawaii, and Illinois. As VOA’s Kane Farabaugh reports, each of them played an important part in the president’s life before he reached the White House.
Video

Video Cuba Deal is Major Victory for Pope’s Diplomatic Initiatives

Pope Francis played a key role in brokering the US-Cuba deal that was made public earlier this week. It is the most stunning success so far in a series of peacemaking efforts by the pontiff. VOA religion reporter Jerome Socolovsky has more.
Video

Video Fears of More Political Gridlock in 2015

2014 proved to be a difficult year politically for President Barack Obama and a very good year for the U.S. Republican Party. Republican gains in the November midterm elections gave them control of the Senate and House of Representatives for the next two years -- setting the stage for more confrontation and gridlock in the final two years of the Obama presidency. VOA National Correspondent Jim Malone has a preview from Washington.
Video

Video Sudan School Becomes Target of Aerial Attacks

The school dropout rate is at an all-time high in Sudan's South Kordofan state because many schools have been destroyed during the three-year civil war between the government and SPLA-N rebel forces. Adam Bailes visited Sudan's Nuba Mountains' region and reports many children are simply too scared to go to school
Video

Video VOA Reporter Tours Devastated Peshawar School

Islamist militants wearing military uniforms and strapped with explosives attacked a military run school Tuesday in the northwestern Pakistani city of Peshawar. At least 141 people were killed in the horrific attack, most of them young students. VOA reporter Ayaz Gul visited the devastated school and attended the funeral of the principal who courageously tried to save her students from the deadly attack.
Video

Video Nigerians Fleeing Boko Haram Languish in Camp Near Capital

In its five-year effort to impose Islamic law in northeastern Nigeria, the Boko Haram extremist group has killed thousands of people and forced hundreds of thousands to flee. Some of those who ran for their lives now live in squalor on the edges of the capital, Abuja. Chris Stein reports for VOA.
Video

Video Aceh Rebuilt Decade After Tsunami, But Scars Remain

On December 26, 2004 there was an earthquake in the Indian Ocean so powerful it caused the Earth’s axis to wobble a few centimeters. Onshore on the island of Sumatra, the resulting tsunami was devastating. A decade later, VOA Correspondent Steve Herman reports from Banda Aceh, Indonesia, where although there is little remaining evidence of the physical devastation, the psychological scars among survivors remain.

All About America

AppleAndroid

New in Music Alley

Soul Lounge

"Soul Lounge" host Shawna Renee catches up with soul singer and songwriter Russell Taylor to hear what he’s been up to since winning the VH1 "You Oughta Know" title in 2013. She also convinces him to share a few songs from his album "War of Hearts."