Keanu Reeves on ‘John Wick 4’ & Most Difficult Action Sequences of Franchise
Mar 8, 2023
Keanu Reeves is back at the titular assassin-gone-rogue in John Wick: Chapter 4, and this time – as it is every time – it’s personal. For Wick’s High Table take-down, director Chad Stahelski quadruples the vengeance, quadruples the action-packed ballet of martial arts, and quadruples the stakes in the fourth entry to the Baba Yaga’s legacy. While sitting down with Collider’s Steve Weintraub, Reeves ranked some of those very action sequences for us (did your favorite make the cut?), teased a couple from the upcoming Chapter 4, and also breaks down a particularly challenging Berlin club scene. Reeves also shares updates on his passion project, BRZRKR, and the status of Constantine 2.
COLLIDER VIDEO OF THE DAY
Chapter 4 picks up after all hell broke loose at the end of John Wick: Chapter 3 – Parabellum, leaving Wick a supposedly dead man and Winston (Ian McShane) reinstated as the Continental manager – and after Charon (Lance Reddick) finally got in on some of that sweet action! As each film in the franchise does, this one builds on the mind-blowing fight sequences, set against stunning set pieces, and spans the globe in Wick’s journey to take down the High Table once and for all. Meanwhile, Bill Skarsgård, as the Marquis de Gramont, represents a new management, with new rules, and a true way out for Wick.
In addition to Reeves, McShane, Reddick, and Skarsgård, John Wick: Chapter 4 features Laurence Fishburne, reprising his role as the Bowery King, as well as Donnie Yen, Hiroyuki Sanada, Shamier Anderson, Scott Adkins, Natalia Tena, and more. This fourth entry promises more dogs, more neon-soaked combat, brand-new family ties, and beautiful on-location scenes across the world. Check out our interview with Reeves in the player above, or you can read the full conversation below.
COLLIDER: How are you doing today?
KEANU REEVES: I’m well, sir. How are you today?
Image via Lionsgate
I’m doing excellent. I really want to start with a sincere “thank you.” I love these movies and I know how much effort it takes to make these movies, and I just really want to thank you for everything, for you and Chad [Stahelski] for making these.
REEVES: Thanks man, I appreciate that.
This movie has insane action set pieces, and you’ve done them in all four movies. Where do you rank some of the sequences? What do you think is like the top three in terms of the difficulty and everything that went on behind the scenes to pull them off?
REEVES: Are we talking about just Chapter 4?
No, I’m talking about all four movies. What do you think? I’m just curious, what where you’re ranking the difficulty in certain sequences?
REEVES: Oh my gosh! [Laughs] Let’s see, the first one that comes to mind was the horse sequence in Chapter 3. I would say, just as the first time, the assault sequence in Chapter 1. I would say the dance party fight in Chapter 2. And I would say probably it’s a tie between the Arc de Triomphe car sequence and the stair sequence in Sacré-Cœur.
Image via Lionsgate
My jaw was on the ground in Chapter 4 with the sequence in the Berlin Club because you have all these extras behind you during the sequence–
REEVES: Dancing! [dances and giggles]
And to the lights. It’s crazy because, for people that don’t realize, when you think about in action scenes, there are not a lot of extras because of the choreography, of what it takes. So can you sort of explain to people why that sequence is so, so hard to pull off?
REEVES: Yeah, it’s a nice detail. Well, you’re dealing with space and also you’re dealing on the strength of the people who are in the background in the sense of committing to it. Like, they had to keep dancing or be in the moment and kind of just ignore that fight scene that’s going on around you and in front of you. So that kind of cooperation, keeping the moment alive, and feeling authentic. So it’s really just practice, run-throughs, people getting used to the action around them.
Actually, Chad had gotten professional dancers and seated them throughout the background, so there [were] people who knew their bodies and movement and spatial relationships. And so these pods, I think, made this tertiary, connective world that I could weave, and Scott Adkins and I could weave through, as well as the other stunt performers. By the way, Scott disappears in that suit. It’s crazy.
REEVES: Yes, it’s amazing.
Image via Lionsgate
Yeah, I couldn’t believe it. Everything about that sequence is fantastic. I have one minute left with you, so I want to ask about a few other things if you don’t mind. You told me a little while ago that you were thinking about directing BRZRKR? Are you going to direct?
REEVES: I don’t know. The script just came in, it’s at Netflix waiting for notes. We’ll see what happens.
As you know, we’ve spoken about Constantine 2 at least a few times. I cannot believe that a sequel might actually happen. What’s the status?
REEVES: DC world re-evaluating whether or not they want to do a Constantine with me in the movie… So fingers crossed!
I understand. It’s because there are a lot of changes going on. I’m hoping it could be like an Elseworlds title where it just exists.
REEVES: Yeah, yes. So do I.
My last thing for you, what are you actually filming this year?
REEVES: I have no idea, I’m looking for work.
John Wick: Chapter 4 is set to premiere in theaters on March 24, 2023.
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