‘John Wick’ Creator Gives Verdict on Mel Gibson’s Role in New Series

by Suzanne Halliburton
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Controversial Mel Gibson was the first actor cast in the new John Wick prequel TV series. And the creator of the movie franchise says that’s OK.

In an interview with TMZ, Derek Kolstad says he’s willing to give Gibson a chance because he doesn’t believe in cancelling people. Kolstad created John Wick, so he’ll receive credit as an executive producer for the prequel, which is called The Continental.

But he told TMZ he has played no role in the creative process for the John Wick prequel, including providing advice on whom to hire.

Gibson will play a character named Cormac. That’s about all we know. Other actors were announced this week. Deadline reported that the young Winston Scott will be portrayed by Colin Woodell (The Flight Attendant). Ian McShane portrayed the character in the John Wick movies. Variety reported that other cast members included Mishel Prada, Ben Robson, Hubert Point Du-Jour, Jessica Allain and Nhung Kate.

Here’s what we know about The Continental:

It takes place in New York City in 1975. The title of the prequel is in reference to the name of the hotel for hitmen. Winston Scott is trying to take over the hotel, which is where the world’s most horrific criminals gather.

The three-night prequel will be on the Starz network.

Mel Gibson last worked on television in 1983. That was the final season he appeared on The Sullivans, a drama on Australian television. He’s fallen out with Hollywood since about 2006. That’s when he was arrested for a DUI in Malibu, Calif. A policeman recorded Gibson as he went on an antisemitic rant. Four years later, recordings were leaked to the media of Gibson yelling racist remarks at his girlfriend, who also accused him of abusing her.

Two More John Wick Movies Are in the Works

Three John Wick movies, all starring Keanu Reeves, have grossed more than $600 million. It’s a very lucrative franchise. A fourth already is in development and has a release date of May 27, 2022. A fifth movie also is planned.

So many beloved series or movies are turning to prequels, so why not John Wick?

Kevin Beggs, chairman of Lionsgate Television, said the movie mythology can be perfect for the smaller screen. “It just cries out to be something in TV,” Beggs told the New York Post. “Just like the Marvel Universe and the DC Universe from a TV perspective are incredible opportunities, and that is our superhero franchise in the family.”

“What we’re exploring in The Continental is the young Winston and how it came to be that he and his team of confederates found their way into this hotel which we have met for the first time in the movie franchise 40 years later,” he said.

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