With the mythology and backstory that director Chad Stahelski and screenwriter Derek Kolstad created for the two John Wick films, delving into some of the world that the formerly retired assassin and his colleagues trafficked in seemed like rich material for a possible TV series.
But would a John Wick TV series be a different version of the premise with another actor playing the assassin? In the 1990s, you might imagine such a show in syndication. However, Stahelski, Kolstad and Lionsgate are looking at expanding the world of these assassins and their secret society through a TV show.
If you’re familiar with the John Wick movies, you know that the underworld operatives typically seek sanctuary and refuge in an underground hotel called The Continental. As the owner puts it, business is not to be conducted on the premises. In other words, no one is to be pursued or killed. And violating those rules invokes a very severe penalty. That’s where this John Wick TV show will go.
John Wick 2 showed that the Continental hotel doesn’t just exist in New York. There are locations throughout the world where assassins can relax, recuperate and enjoy the finer things (such as having wounds stitched up, new clothing tailored and buying the latest guns) without worry of retribution. As Stahelski explained to Indiewire’s Ben Travers, there is a lot of material to explore in that world.
“It’s very tied to the film [in that] it’s about the Continentals all over the world, how certain people come into that world, and what happens in relation to those people, which is cool. I think the world is very vast, and everything I’ve heard from it is very positive. […] It’s something that studio seems very, very intent on [making] and very, very behind.”
Stahelski went on to say that the series won’t center on John Wick, but since he’s a part of that world, the character — and Keanu Reeves — may make an appearance at some point. But looking beyond Wick to the other people who populate this world, who work at the Continentals — the concierge, the sommelier, the on-site doctor — open up all sorts of story possibilities. Maybe they could even include Christopher Walken’s Continental character from Saturday Night Live.
“John Wick. Would you like some champagne?”
It’s not yet known who would be the head writer and showrunner for The Continental, but Stahelski said it would be an experienced writer/producer. Stahelski will also be involved to some extent and hopefully direct a couple of episodes. But he’ll be busy making John Wick 3, which will surely follow the repercussions of decisions Wick made while on Continental grounds in the previous film, now available on digital and home video.