‘White House Down’ Footage: We’ve Seen 8 Minutes and Here Are Five Things We Learned
Although the first ‘White House Down’ trailer hit tonight, we already got a look at the footage … well, us and two small movie theater-filled audiences. Director Roland Emmerich brought along Jamie Foxx to the Union Square AMC theater in NYC for the big reveal of the trailer, while Channing Tatum was doing the same with a London-based audience (shown via telecast). In addition to the premiere and Q&As, we also got to see eight minutes from the film – and here’s what we have to relay.
Though Roland Emmerich is most known for destruction-heavy films like ‘Independence Day’ and ‘The Day After Tomorrow,' he was initially drawn to ‘White House Down’ because of the human-based storyline. As he remarked, the film is about this relationship between a father (Channing Tatum) and his daughter (Joey King, whom Tatum says was a “little monster” on set) – King's Emily Cale loves the President, and John Cale, in an attempt to impress her, tries to get a job with the Secret Service. But don’t worry, there will still be plenty of explosions, gunplay and destruction that only Emmerich can pull off.
But on that note – “This is not ‘Independence Day 2,’” said Foxx, and Tatum later followed up with, “There are no aliens.” This is true despite a funny remark in the footage where a White House tour guide brings his group to the East Wing and says, “and this is the room that got blown up in 'Independence Day' ..."
That much was stated verbatim from the star himself, though, if you can imagine Foxx pulling off a spot-on Barack Obama impersonation, there are some “Yes We Can” and “America Is Great”-style inflections here and there. Amidst all the explosions, he's the clear comedic relief factor, though he put a lot of his trust in Emmerich and the writing with regards to balancing his quips with the action.
You will, however, get to see Foxx's President kick a man in the face, saying, "Get your hands off my Air Jordans!" and later fire a rocket launcher out the window of a moving car.
Rather than go with the cliché plot of a foreign threat attacking the White House, the terrorists are entirely from within, Emmerich ensures us. “I’m not a political person,” said Tatum, though he went on to say that while filming this movie he never felt the current divide in this country so strongly. The trio said the focus is placed on the US and our own internal conflicts as a result of the fact that the threat itself comes from inside the US (the lead villain is played by 'Zero Dark Thirty' star Jason Clarke).
“You want to see the actor’s face go through the glass, right?” he said, after acknowledging the disappointment some feel when realizing an actor isn't actually being portrayed in an eye-popping stunt on screen.
Foxx recollected how Tatum wasn't sure how one particular action sequence would look on film, and to calm his fears, he told him to trust Emmerich. Once they went back and watched the footage, they saw, as Foxx reenacted, Tatum simultaneously shooting off rounds and looking like his sexy 'Magic Mike' self most of us know him as.
If there was one thing we took away from the 'White House Down' trailer premiere, and as we already mentioned a couple times, it was "trust" -- Tatum had it for Foxx, who acted as a "big brother" and "mentor" to the actor, and the two had it for their director. So if these two have enough trust in Emmerich to pull off 'White House Down,' we should too, right?
Also Tatum said the best part about shooting the film, for him, was coming to set every day and hearing Emmerich's flamboyantly European "Gooood Mooorning"s and his unique pronunciation of "Lincoln" (link-cone).