On the eve of John Wick: Chapter 4's release, franchise director Chad Stahelski offered an update on John Wick 5.
Keanu Reeves' upcoming fourth movie is getting rave reviews, debuting at 90% on Rotten Tomatoes, and receiving a number of perfect scores from various outlets.
Chapter 4 is set to be the franchise's longest movie yet and will set up a spin-off film titled Ballerina, starring No Time to Die star Ana de Armas.
From there a Starz original streaming series called The Continental will carry the torch of the John Wick franchise, with a fifth installment already greenlit; however, when that movie hits theater screens remains a question.
The Question of John Wick 5
John Wick director Chad Stahelski addressed the prospect of a potential John Wick 5 in a recent interview with The Hollywood Reporter.
Stahelski noted that he and series star Keanu Reeves are "done for the moment" and plan on "giv[ing] John Wick a rest" at least for now, indicating that the release of John Wick 5 is still at least a few years away:
In our minds, Keanu and I are done for the moment. 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. Wicks always, for some weird reason, always get the latest release date in Japan."
He then remarked that after John Wick 4 hits theaters in Japan (in September of this year), he and Reeves will sit down and "write some ideas on napkins," and then after than somewhere down the line take on the fifth film:
"It’s always like, three months later. 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."
These comments are in line with what the filmmaker has said previously when broaching the subject of John Wick 5. He recently told Slash Film that "somewhere, maybe somebody will do it,” as he has looked at every movie in the franchise as "[his] last one" before ultimately coming back and doing another:
“Somewhere, maybe somebody will do it. I’m always saying, ‘This is my last one, this will never happen again.’ And I’ll say that now: This is my last one.”
He lamented that he usually has taken quite some time between John Wick films, giving himself a break before jumping back into the franchise:
“Every time I come back to a ‘Wick,’ there’s been two or three years in between. That’s a lot of time for a human. You know how many pieces of art or music or museums or locations I’ve gone to in three years? Huge. I mean, think of what you do in a year. What would you do in three? Don’t you think all that would influence you? I just don’t think I’d be very good jumping right into something. I need a little bit of time to get better. I’ve got to go practice.”
In 2020 (as reported by Deadline), Lionsgate CEO John Feltheimer revealed plans were to have Chapter 4 and 5 film back to back, something that ultimately did not end up happening:
“We’re also busy preparing scripts for the next two installments of our John Wick action franchise, with 'John Wick 4' slated to hit theatres Memorial Day weekend 2022. We hope to shoot both 'John Wick 4' & '5' back to back when Keanu becomes available early next year.”
What Is Next for John Wick?
While the question of when John Wick 5 will land remains up in the air, that does not necessarily mean the franchise is going anywhere any time soon.
As previously mentioned, Ana de Armas' spin-off, Ballerina, is currently in production.
And both Chad Stahelski and Keanu Reeves are still involved in Ballerina with Stahelski producing and Reeves set for a cameo.
Despite his thoughts now, it certainly feels like both Stahelski and Reeves will be back for John Wick 5 sooner rather than later. The franchise has become one of the most celebrated names in movies over the last decade.
Plus, add in the fact that John Wick 4 is tracking to be another massive success, and one can easily see Lionsgate will be eager to get another movie from the John Wick team as soon after 4 as possible.
Right now, Stahelski just needs a bit of distance between him and the franchise, then, once John Wick 4 is in the rearview, he can officially begin work on Chapter 5 in earnest.
John Wick: Chapter 4 is set to hit theaters worldwide on Friday, March 24.