This is how Keanu Reeves unintentionally inspired the name John Wick

This is how Keanu Reeves unintentionally inspired the name John Wick

August 31, 2023

How did Keanu Reeves unintentionally inspire the name John Wick?

  • Derek Kolstad revealed that John Wick was not meant to be the name of the film
  • The acclaimed franchise has earned more than $1 billion in box office sales
  • Lionsgate confirmed in May that John Wick 5 is in the works 

Actor Keanu Reeves has been starring in the John Wick franchise since 2014 – but if it weren’t for his frequent mistake, this franchise would not be named John Wick.

If it were up to John Wick co-creator and screenwriter Derek Kolstad, the first John Wick film would’ve been called Scorn. 

However, Reeves repeatedly called the film John Wick instead – leading to the studio deciding to change the film title.

‘The only reason it’s called John Wick is that Keanu kept referring to it as John Wick,’ co-creator and screenwriter Derek Kolstad confirmed. 

‘Marketing was like, ‘Dude, that’s four to five million dollars in free advertising so far, so it’s John Wick instead of Scorn.”

Keanu Reeves has portrayed the title character in the John Wick franchise since 2014. The movie was initially going to be called Scorn – but it was changed by the studio

Derek Kolstad created the John Wick franchise and served as a screenwriter for the first three films. He continues to receive credit for his character creation

The first John Wick film was released in 2014 and met with positive reviews. It grossed $86 million at the box office and considered by some as one of the greatest action films ever made

The John Wick franchise focuses on the title character – a legendary hitman who comes out of retirement after the death of his wife, Helen.

The first film released in 2014 was met with positive reviews from critics an received an 86% on Rotten Tomatoes.

The next film, John Wick: Chapter 2 was released in 2017 and grossed more than 174 million at the box office.

John Wick: Chapter 3 – Parabellum like its predecessors received positive reviews in 2019 – with Rolling Stone reviewer Peter Travers stating the wow factor is ‘off the charts.’

The fourth installment John Wick: Chapter 4 not only received praise for its action sequences, but it also grossed over $432 million worldwide.

A fifth John Wick film is currently in development, and while the film will take time, the John Wick character will return.  

John Wick: Chapter 3 – Parabellum was met with praise from fans and critics following its 2019 release. It was the highest grossing film in the franchise until the release of its latest film installment

John Wick: Chapter 4 is the latest film in the John Wick franchise. It grossed more than $430 million worldwide and has continued to be a successful moneymaking franchise for Lionsgate

Following the film franchise success, 2023 prequel spin-off: The Continental: From the World of John Wick will premiere on September 22, and focus on film character Winston Scott.

Actress Ana de Armas will be portraying Rooney in the upcoming film spinoff Ballerina – scheduled to be released on June 7, 2024.

However, the release date could change in the future depending on results that come out of the 2023 Hollywood strikes. 

The movie will mainly focus on Rooney, a professional ballerina who seeks revenge by hunting the murders of her family.

Rooney was first introduced in John Wick: Chapter 3 – Parabellum and portrayed by American ballet dancer Unity Phelan. 

Reeves will portray John Wick in the film, and he will also serve as a producer. 

Kolstad did not participate in the fourth John Wick film and is not planning to work on the 2023 and 2024 spin-offs. 

It is unclear if he will show interest in working on a fifth John Wick film – but he continues to be credited for creating the franchise’s characters.

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