The code title on the invite: “Baba Yaga.”
Which as John Wick followers know, is the nickname of Keanu Reeves’ weary and unstoppable gun-fu murderer in Lionsgate’s vastly common motion franchise. The studio held a not-so-secret screening of the upcoming John Wick: Chapter 4 at South by Southwest Movie & TV Competition in Austin on Monday afternoon (like all the very best SXSW secrets and techniques, the information leaked days upfront).
The Chad Stahelski-directed film is by far the longest Wick journey but, working simply shy of three hours — almost twice so long as the 2014 first movie and about 40 minutes longer than Chapter 3. Every hour has one epic prolonged motion sequence that includes the franchise’s attribute mixture of mayhem, violence, balletic physicality and morbid humor. Plus, the movie features a post-credits scene.
Reeves attended the occasion whereas appropriately wearing a black swimsuit. Followers had been undoubtedly invested within the motion, with the group hooting and cheering all through. At one level, after he falls out of a window, a girl within the viewers yelled, “Stand up, Keanu!” which led to extra cheers.
Throughout a Q&A that adopted the screening, Reeves revealed that he has John’s watch and wedding ceremony ring as a memento. One other fan requested Reeves if he really ages, main the star to reply, “Yeah, man, I age. It’s taking place, man.”
Stahelski was requested what he desires the franchise’s legacy to be, and he merely mentioned, “This,” referring to the fan expertise of watching it. As for his influences for the brand new sequel, the director cited Sergio Leone samurai motion pictures and Walter Hill’s The Warriors.
The screening led to enthusiastic social media reactions, together with one fan who tweeted partly, “Holy hell. Peppers you with glorious set items early after which within the final hour hammers you on the top with a few of the best motion sequences I’ve ever seen.” One other attendee praised the movie as an “absolute banger” and gushed, “The third act and finale had the entire crowd cheering like no different.”
A 3rd visitor posted concerning the “colourful characters, eye-popping manufacturing design, and unbelievable struggle choreography.” The tweet added, “Chad Stahelski is among the finest administrators working at this time.”
That is the primary stateside premiere for the franchise installment. Within the lead-up to SXSW, Reeves and the John Wick crew have been globe-trotting, debuting the movie throughout Europe in Berlin, Paris, and London — all filming areas.
The setup is fairly easy: Wick is preventing for his freedom “and should face a brand new enemy with highly effective alliances throughout the globe and forces that flip outdated associates into new foes.”
Along with Reeves, the movie additionally stars Donnie Yen, Invoice Skarsgård, Laurence Fishburne, Hiroyuki Sanada, Shamier Anderson, Lance Reddick, Rina Sawayama, Scott Adkins, Clancy Brown, Natalia Tena, Marko Zaror and Ian McShane.
Like many titles, the challenge was delayed as a result of COVID pandemic, having been initially deliberate for launch in Could 2021. Lionsgate additionally initially deliberate to shoot Chapter 4 together with a fifth installment again to again, however scrapped that plan. Reeves has mentioned the studio is now taking a wait-and-see strategy.
John Wick: Chapter 4 might be launched on March 24.