With three movies, another film on the way, and a prequel series, the John Wick franchise is going strong.
Starring the “Internet’s Boyfriend,” Keanu Reeves, John Wick was released in 2014 to critical and modest financial success. It became something of a sleeper hit, growing in popularity after its theatrical release. Two sequels, John Wick: Chapter 2 and John Wick: Chapter 3 — Parabellum, released in 2017 and 2019, respectively. Both of them outgrossed the original, with Parabellum making more its opening weekend than the first film did during its entire theatrical run.
In addition to the film, John Wick received the graphic novel treatment. These stories follow a younger Wick. In the film, he is a retired hitman who returns to the criminal underworld to seek revenge. In the comic books, Wick is still an active assassin, but with a twist: he only targets people who deserve it. Not dissimilar to Dexter, he is a hitman who kills worse hitmen.
It’s an interesting take on John Wick. While the older Wick allies himself with criminals and lowlifes regularly, the younger Wick is less willing to do so. For fans eagerly waiting for the next chapter of John Wick in 2023, the comic series should be enough to tide you over. It has all of the action and wit audiences came to love in the films.
John Wick Star Talks Scoring Another Iconic Role
Before experiencing a career revival with John Wick, Keanu Reeves was known for a variety of iconic roles. From Bill & Ted to Speed, he became one of the biggest stars of the 1990s. This stardom only expanded when he joined the cast of the science-fiction epic, The Matrix, in 1999.
“I was very lucky,” Reeves explained. “Um, I got a call from my agent, saying that these directors, the Wachowskis, wanted to meet, and they sent me the script, and the script was absolutely amazing.”
From the moment he read the script, Reeves knew he wanted in. The high concept and opportunity to do more intensive stunt work appealed to him.
“And I went in to meet with them, and they showed me some artwork, of their vision, and an early version of ‘bullet time,’ and it was very exciting and inspiring, and we looked at each other, we ended up hanging out in a parking lot outside the offices just talking and riffing, and we basically just kinda shook hands — they told me they wanted me to train for 4 months prior to filming, and I got a big grin on my face and said: ‘Yes.’”
The Matrix went on to be a major success, and it launched a trilogy. While the sequels were less well-received than the original film, they maintain a passionate and loyal fanbase. Reeves’s role in the series became so iconic that he and fellow lead Carrie-Anne Moss returned for another sequel, The Matrix Resurrections, in 2021.