White House Down: why Channing Tatum hesitated to play in the film

In “White House Down”, Channing Tatum plays a policeman who does everything to protect his daughter, the President of the United States and hostages of terrorists who have taken over the White House. A blockbuster in the line of “Piège de cristal” in which the actor hesitated to participate, not wanting to lock himself in action films.

White House Down : Roland Emmerich attacks the White House again

Released in 2013, the same year as its competitor The White House fall by Antoine Fuqua, White House Down allows Roland Emmerich to attack the main residence of the President of the United States again, 17 years after the iconic plan ofindependence day. In this blockbuster, Channing Tatum lends his features to John Cale, a Capitol police officer who tries to join the secret service.

On the day of his interview at the White House, John takes advantage of his visit to show his daughter Emily (Joey King) around. The latter even manages to realize her dream by landing an interview with Head of State James Sawyer (Jamie Foxx) for her YouTube channel. But shortly after, a group of paramilitaries led by Emil Stenz (Jason Clarke) manages to invest the place and organize a hostage-taking. To thwart the plan of these terrorists, John will have to join forces with the President.

White House Down ©Sony Pictures Entertainment

Maggie Gyllenhaal, James Woods, Richard Jenkins, Lance Reddick and Jimmi Simpson complete the distribution of the blockbuster, which does not meet with the expected success. For an estimated budget of 150 million dollars according to Box Office Mojothe film brought in only 205 million worldwide.

Channing Tatum hesitant

If Sony thinks of Channing Tatum to be one of the headliners of the project, it is in particular because of the commercial successes of Dear John, I promise you or 21 Jump Street. The comedian manages to convince the director Roland Emmerich from their first meetingas the latter tells MTV :

It was one of those times when you meet someone and immediately hook up with them. He’s the nicest guy, completely down-to-earth, super-smart, and million-dollar-looking.

White House Down
John Cale (Channing Tatum) – White House Down ©Sony Pictures Entertainment

The filmmaker is therefore very quickly convinced that Channing Tatum is perfect to play John Cale. Nevertheless the actor hesitates, not wanting to lock themselves into the roles of muscular and armed to the teeth characters. He thus explains to HollywoodReporter :

I must say that I was not sure (of wanting to make the film). A lot of people call me and want to put a gun in my hands, and it’s a very strange position. America is very divided right now. But I felt this movie was a good way to highlight some of the country’s issues, including Washington’s polarization, without being overly dramatic or heavy-handed.

The actor also affirms with Collider have been seduced by the relationship between the hero and his daughter Emilydescribing John as “a man who ends up saving the leader of the free world through his love for his daughter”.

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White House Down: why Channing Tatum hesitated to play in the film