New details have been revealed for The Continental, the John Wick spinoff series that takes place 40 years before the films, including that Keanu Reeves will not be making an appearance.Lionsgate Television chairman Kevin Beggs told Deadline that the new prequel series will focused on a younger version of Ian McShane's Winston, and will be set in 1970s New York City.
"What we’re exploring in The Continental is the young Winston and how it came to be that he and his team of confederates found their way into this hotel which we have met for the first time in the movie franchise 40 years later." Beggs explained.
McShane had previously confirmed that he won't be appearing in The Continental, but that he may return for some voice-over work.The Continental is a major location in the John Wick trilogy, and is the assassin's hotel that has a rule that you can't kill anyone when inside its grounds. However, step one foot outside its boundaries and all bets are off.
The studio took a lot of pitches for this spinoff series, but the one that won out was from the creative team of "this obscure little show called Wayne that was on YouTube." Beggs was impressed because it solved "a lot of problems" and even used The Sopranos as an inspiration.
It will feature "a crumbling New York in the 1970s with a garbage strike that has piled up bags of garbage to the third floor of most brownstones, the mafia muscling in on that business which is why in The Sopranos he’s in the sanitation business, and other things that are really real as an interesting backdrop to explore the origins of The Continental…" Beggs explained.John Wick: Chapter Three PhotosBeggs also shared that the way they are approaching the first season is as "three essentially 90-minute events which you could construe as a limited series or a limited event series."
Those hoping for Keanu Reeves to make an appearance may be disappointed, as this story takes place "way back pre-John Wick and even pre-young John-Wick" and, according to Beggs, he will not be finding "his way into the universe." However, he is in talks to executive produce the series.
"We are in the John Wick universe, but it’s way back in time," Beggs said. "Think about the Game of Thrones prequels before you know any of the players, but you do know the world. But Keanu and Chad have read every draft and been enthusiastic supporters of expanding this universe in a meaningful way. So, I never rule out anything, but at this point he’s pretty busy making his movies which are very important to us.”
While they will be missing series creator Derek Kolstad, those craving more of John Wick's adventure can rest easy knowing that both John Wick 4 and 5 are set to be filmed back-to-back in 2021, with John Wick: Chapter 4 arriving on May 27, 2022.
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