“John Wick: Chapter 3 — Parabellum” featured a standout action sequence in which Keanu Reeves’ character fought on horseback during a wild chase scene through New York City. It’s going to be pretty hard for the fourth “John Wick” movie to top something so crazy, and director Chad Stahelski knows it and is feeling the pressure. During a recent interview with Collider, Stahelski says that figuring out how to top “John Wick: Chapter 3” is keeping him up at night. Lionsgate announced the fourth “John Wick” shortly after the third film exploded at the box office with a $56 million debut. Stahelski and Reeves had no intention of returning for a fourth movie, but Reeves was eager to do one more and there was a story thread cut from “Chapter 3” that made sense to follow in a fourth movie.
“I want to be cool with the action,” Stahelski said. “I want to be a better director, but that doesn’t mean I want to do less action or have less to do with the action. I guess the third one just felt like I needed a place to go after number two, and I had these ideas. It kind of became that wacky action movie. There’s been a couple days where I’ve decided to do number four and I’ve woken up in a cold sweat going, ‘Horses! How do I beat horses?’ I have no fucking idea to tell you the truth. I have a lot of really cool ideas for the next one that I think are different and shocking and fun and unique. How to do them, I have no fuckin’ idea right now. I’m still figuring it out.”
The script for “John Wick 4” is not finalized, but Stahelski said he has a “100-and-something page document” that is “part outline, part script.” The document will be whittled down and refined into the final screenplay. The director said, “I’m in a happy place where we are in development. We got, not quite a locked-in first draft, but we’re in a place where we know what we want to do and where we want to do it.”
Lionsgate has set a May 21, 2021 release date for “John Wick 4,” Stahelski remains in the dark as to whether or not that will be possible. Reeves is still committed to finishing “The Matrix 4,” which is currently on a production hiatus.
“‘The Matrix’ was only four weeks in when this all happened,” Stahelski said. “So, Keanu’s gotta go finish his commitment up on ‘The Matrix,’ which is a big deal and which I think will probably take him until the end of the year. Then we have to go into our prep mode and then we’ll start. So release dates…who knows right now.”
Head over to Collider to read more from Stahelski on “John Wick 4.” The sequel remains set for May 2021 for now.