ByMatt Timmy Creamer, writer at
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Matt Timmy Creamer

It’s quite a shame that we won’t get to hear Will Smith’s character Captain Steven Hiller say any memorable lines in the new Independence Day: Resurgence movie. While there are many quotable lines throughout the original film, Hiller undoubtedly stole the show.

Lines such as “WHOOOOO!!!!!!!!! Elvis has left the building!,” ”No, sir, I’m just a little anxious to get up there and whup E.T.’s ass, that’s all,” and of course everyone's favorite and most quotable moment, “Now that’s what I call a close encounter,” truly represent the character's motivation in the film.

A few months ago, 20th Century Fox released an interactive website called, which revealed that Captain Steven Hiller was killed by an “Alien Tech Malfunction.” Hiller was testing out some of the new weapons that Earth had been experimenting on to better improve their weaponry. Unfortunately for Hiller, his bravery proved fatal but his legacy lives on. Check out the viral video below to hear Bill Pullman's character, Thomas J. Whitmore's famous speech from Independence Day:

The report from the website reads:

“While test piloting the ESD’s first alien hybrid fighter, an unknown malfunction causes the untimely death of Col. Hiller. Hiller’s valor in the War of ‘96 made him a beloved global icon whose selfless assault against the alien mothership lead directly to the enemy’s defeat. He is survived by his wife Jasmine and son Dylan.”

It was a bit perplexing to learn that Will Smith would not be reprising a role that helped bring him into the Hollywood spotlight. We learned that quite a few of the films’ previous stars were returning including his wife and son played by Vivica A. Fox and Jessie Usher respectively. Hell, even Bill Pullman and Jeff Goldblum are both returning!

There were numerous rumors as to why Smith wouldn’t sign onto the project. Some sources have stated that the film came into conflict with David Ayers' Suicide Squad, while others say he would have cost too much. Either way Smith will definitely not be returning to this franchise. The humans will have to battle the aliens without him in the lead this time around.

Did we see Hiller’s death in the trailer?

“Your father was the bravest man I’ve ever seen.” -David Levinson

The trailer opens with an announcement by Liam Hemsworth, that 20 years have passed since those devastating events took place. He asks Whitmore’s daughter if she still plans on going to the anniversary. The former president's daughter replies that “We wouldn’t be here if it wasn’t for him.”

The very next scene shows the new president give a speech about the previous encounter with the aliens. As that scene continues, Goldblum brings up Hiller’s character reminiscing how brave he was in battle as a picture is shown with Steven, his wife Jasmine, and his son Dylan. We assume that David is talking to Hiller’s son Dylan (played by Jessie Usher) because shortly after we hear Usher state, “We all lost someone we love.”

In the midst of all the dialogue, there’s one scene from the trailer that may have showed us Captain Steven Hiller’s death. Check it out below:

"Let's show them some fireworks!"
"Let's show them some fireworks!"

As we see in the GIF above, this aircraft crashes and burns on impact in what looks to be a desert. What better place is there to test advanced technology away from people than a desert setting? I know movie trailers sometimes try and deceive audiences with lines of dialogue that may or may not take place during the movie, but I don't believe this is one.

It should be no of coincidence that we hear both these lines of dialogue stated from Levinson and Hiller’s son Dylan, that we immediately see an aircraft crash into a million pieces. Could this be a mislead? Sure. But I tend to think not.

The Verdict

I believe we will see Hiller’s death at some point in the film even if we don’t actually see the person piloting the aircraft. As I said earlier, it is a shame that Smith won’t reprise the role that made him so iconic. One of the reasons Independence Day was a box office success was due to Will Smith’s character arc. He brought a sort of gravitas to the film and made it a fun action/sci-fi adventure. Plus, Smith's and Goldblum's characters had great chemistry together and brought the film to a whole new level of awesome!

But that’s what I think. The bigger question is, what do you all think? Do you believe we will see Hiller’s death at some point in the film in a flashback sequence? Or do you think the characters will just mention him like they do in the trailer? I’d like to hear your thoughts in the comment section below and don’t forget to share this with your friends!

Also if you haven’t done so already, check out the newest trailer for Independence Day: Resurgence!

Sources: Entertainment Weekly and


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