Gerard Butler's popular Has Fallen franchise is being brought to television with Paris Has Fallen.
When discussing major film franchises, most fans focus on obvious ones such as Star Wars, the MCU, Star Trek, and so on. But one of the most successful franchises not named Marvel is one many fans may not be aware of: Gerard Butler’s Has Fallen franchise, which includes Olympus Has Fallen, London Has Fallen, and Angel Has Fallen. While a fourth film is in the works, Deadline reports that the series is transitioning to television with a series called Paris Has Fallen.
As you might imagine, Gerard Butler has been at the heart of the previous films, playing a Secret Service agent named Mike Banning. In the fine tradition of heroes like John McClane from Die Hard, Butler’s character just keeps ending up in the wrong place at the wrong time. At this time, Butler (who is producing the series) is not attached to star in it, but showrunners haven’t ruled out the possibility that he could make a cameo at some point.
Who, then, will headline Paris Has Fallen if not Gerard Butler? Mathieu Kassovitz is going to be the series lead. If the name doesn’t ring a bell, Kassovitz is a longtime veteran French actor and filmmaker, and he seems the perfect choice to headline a series set in the capital of France.
Even without Gerard Butler definitively making an appearance in the show, it looks like Paris Has Fallen has plenty of talent behind the camera to create a captivating television show. Oded Ruskin will be directing the episodes, and his work on Hulu’s No Man’s Land is seriously impressive. Episodes are being written by Howard Overman, who is perhaps best known for creating the BAFTA-winning science fiction comedy series Misfits.
In Paris Has Fallen, Kassovitz takes over for Gerard Butler as the hapless man of action who gets caught up in circumstances beyond his control. His job is to protect a French minister, but that becomes infinitely more complicated when the minister gets targeted by a nefarious terror group. Things go from bad to worse as Kassovitz’s character learns he may have a mole on his hands, which is one of the reasons he begins working with an MI6 operative named Zara (no last name given, which must make ordering drinks like James Bond difficult for this secret agent).
As much as we enjoy the original Gerard Butler films, we have to agree that pivoting the franchise to television is probably the best move. Recently, Lucasfilm president Kathleen Kennedy discussed how movies like Indiana Jones and The Dial of Destiny are getting longer in part to accommodate audiences who like to stream longer-form content. Rather than trying to stretch an action movie to an unreasonable length, it seems smart to give Paris Has Fallen its eight-part first season so the story has time to breathe.
Ultimately, the more we think about translating this Gerard Butler franchise to television, the more we think it’s a good idea. If successful, it could lead the way to other franchises pivoting to the small screen (how cool would it be if Tom Cruise got behind the camera and returned Mission: Impossible to its television roots?). And while Paris Has Fallen doesn’t have a network attached yet, we imagine the buzz from this franchise which has already generated $500 million may cause a bidding war, especially since the writer’s strike has many studios screaming that “Hollywood has fallen.”