As a director of primarily action-oriented films, Renny Harlin began his career in the late 1980s on a promising note with the lucrative "Nightmare on Elm Street 4: The Dream Master" (1988). Immediately following the highly profitable fourth installment to the horror series, Harlin - previously a successful filmmaker in his native Finland - suddenly found himself to be Hollywood's go-to director of action movies. He kept expectations high with "Die Hard 2" (1990), another box office success that gave many the impression that this was no one-hit wonder. Harlin followed this with "Cliffhanger" (1993), a Sylvester Stallone vehicle that performed well with audiences and at the box office. Harlin struggled after his next film, "Cutthroat Island" (1995) faltered at the box office, but he continued to regularly make films with his customary skill and professionalism.