It's been a rough few years for "Die Hard" director John McTiernan. Once considered one of the hottest directors in Hollywood (he also directed "The Hunt for Red October," "Predator," and "The Thomas Crown Affair"), since 2006 he has been embroiled in a scandal involving the shady private detective Anthony Pellicano and the illegal wiretapping of McTiernan's "Rollerball" producer Charles Roven. The story is positively labyrinthine and involves a number of high profile Hollywood players, but so far McTiernan is the only one who has received jail time (a year-long sentence is scheduled to begin soon). Still, you can't keep a good -- or in the case of McTiernan, a great -- director down, as the filmmaker is quietly working on a new project while awaiting his fate.

According to a post on the Free John McTiernan Facebook page (which has already garnered the support of everyone from "The Incredibles" director Brad Bird to Samuel L. Jackson, who starred in McTiernan's "Die Hard with a Vengeance" and "Basic"), the director is currently fashioning a new project called "Warbirds." The movie is supposedly based on the adventure films of George Roy Hill, who directed "Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid" and "The Sting." According to the site, the movie "tells the tale of a group of aerial firefighters who also lead a secret life during the winter."

Keep in mind that this is at least the third airplane-based project McTiernan has tried to get off the ground in the past decade or so. Most notably he was attached to a high profile, extremely expensive adaptation of the Michael Crichton novel "Airframe" for Disney. McTiernan bailed after he famously came to blows with Crichton over his adaptation of Crichton's "Eaters of the Dead" (which was later anonymously renamed "The 13th Warrior").

McTiernan is scheduled to start serving his one-year prison sentence sometime this year.

[via Free John McTiernan Facebook Page]
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