Oral Histories

How Keanu Reeves and Chad Stahelski Expanded the John Wick Universe with Chapter 2 and 3

Send him to Rome! Bring in Laurence Fishburne! Intensify the action... a lot! In a special oral history, the actor and director break down how they built up the John Wick universe.

by | May 9, 2019 | Comments

“There’s not supposed to be a sequel.” That was the first thought director Chad Stahelski had when approached to make a second film about the stylish, vengeful assassin, John Wick. But both he and star and collaborator Keanu Reeves were up for the challenge. The two set to work immediately on continuing the story and expanding both the universe of the film and the character at its center. Wick can use sign language, they decided, and he could speak Italian, and, they were going to take the story to Rome. Because, why not? There would be blood oaths and shifting allegiances and an epic fight between Keanu Reeves and Common because… why not? It was that attitude, that almost anything was possible with this world and this character, that drove the evolution of the John Wick series from Chapter 2 and right into Chapter 3 – Parabellum, releaseing this month. In this exclusive extended interview, Reeves and Stahelski – who directed the Wick sequels solo after co-directing the first film with David Leitch – reveal how they developed the sequel ideas, upped the action ante, and convinced their old friend Laurence Fishburne, with whom both had worked on The Matrix, to join them for the ride. (In the process, they doubled the box office of the original film.) Plus, the pair offer new insights into Chapter 3, detailing Halle Berry’s arrival in the John Wick universe and sharing which new action scene they love the most.


John Wick: Chapter 3 – Parabellum opens in theaters on May 17.

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