HomeEntertainmentKeanu Reeves, ‘John Wick’ Director Drop Major Bomb About Future of Franchise

Keanu Reeves, ‘John Wick’ Director Drop Major Bomb About Future of Franchise

by Samantha Whidden
Keanu Reeves and Chad Stahelski Talk About John Wick Future
(Photo by Rick Kern/Getty Images for Lionsgate)

Following the premiere of John Wick: Chapter 4 during the SXSW film festival, Keanu Reeves and director Chad Stahelski shared some bad news about the future of the action-packed franchise. 

Try Paramount+ FREE for a week. Subscribe here to watch your favorite shows.

While speaking to The Hollywood Reporter, Stahelski, who was once a stunt double to Reeves, hinted that the film series may come to an end after the release of the new chapter. “In our minds, Keanu and I are done for the moment,” Stahelski explained. “We’re going to give John Wick a rest. I’m sure the studio has a plan. If everyone loves it and it goes kooky, then we’ll take a quiet minute.”

Stahelski then said that John Wick always gets the latest release date in Japan and its’ always three months later. After that, then he and Keanu Reeves may discuss John Wick and the franchise’s future. “If it’s the same this time, we’ll do a Japanese tour and release the movie in September. Keanu and I will take the long trip to Tokyo, we’ll sit in the Imperial Hotel Scotch Bar and go, ‘What do you think?’ We’ll have a couple 20-year-old whiskies and write some ideas on napkins. If those ideas stick, maybe we’ll make a movie.”

‘John Wick’ Director Opens Up About the First Film’s Killing Puppy Scene

Also discussing John Wick’s infamous killing puppy scene, Stahelski stated that that the scene was written out as many times as it was written back in. “Ultimately, it’s mythological. We had to go so overboard, so extreme to push it to let you know that it was absolutely symbolic. We’re not trying to hold the realism. We want the viewers to know we’re having a laugh.”

However, Stahelski said that the scene was actually pretty stressed about how viewers would see the John Wick films afterward. “Holy s—, we were risking credit cards, a house mortgage, everything. [Producer] Basil Iwanyk put his company up. And then you have that day where you realize we’re doing all this and we’re killing a puppy? I thought we would never come back from it.”

When asked how the John Wick films have doubled their gross with each installment, Stahelski was also shocked about the amount of money the movies made through the years. “If you had given me $200 million after the first movie, which we made for nothing, I would’ve mucked it up,” he joked. He also said that he had been part of many second units and reshoots of big franchises that went south. 

“So we watch the other franchises that threw money at just paying everybody more or on a couple bigger explosions,” the John Wick director continued. “It’s great for the trailer, but there’s no meat on the bone.”

Stahelski and his team decided to spend the extra funding they received to go shoot in three or four countries, but to be careful in the film’s casting. “I’m a huge Sergio Leone fan, and there’s not a movie he’s done where every little character isn’t great. That’s what I want.”