After a couple of years of rumors and slow development we have not got the confirmation that The Continental is coming soon to the John Wick Universe. But there are a few changes made to the initial announcement back in 2018, Keanu Reeves will most like only executive produce the show while the spinoff will be focused on Young Winston, about 40 years before the events of first John Wick.
John Wick was a surprise hit back in 2014 and it revived a downhill headed career of Keanu Reeves. The world is grateful for Keanu's revival now but the with rise of Keanu also rose the fortunes of Lionsgate studio, responsible for some of your beloved and hate YA adaptations of last decade. Now the studio is pushing hard on the John Wick franchise both on the silver screen and on the small screen.
Lionsgate TV has stepped up its small screen game over the past two years. They got all their pilots greenlit this pilot season and have over 24 shows currently in production at different studios and streaming platforms. So, when Deadline sat down with the boss of Lionsgate TV, Kevin Beggs, he was quick to highlight John Wick franchise's mythology and how it lends perfectly to a TV format.
The Continental with Young Winston is Coming to Starz
After the success of John Wick Chapter 2, multiple ideas of spinoff, prequels and sidequels were floated by the studio. While most of the ideas were just wishful thinking with Jessica Henwick even pestering Keanu Reeves for a Jess Wick movie, none of the proposed story threats resulted in concrete production.
But The Continental always had some steam behind it, even the fans were excited to see the origins of the sanctuary hotel so prevalent in the movies. So, the people behind the scenes stuck with the idea and now Lionsgate TV chairman is pretty high about The Continental as part of his overall Lionsgate 360 strategy.
Beggs was all praises for the John Wick franchise and how there are still two more movie in the works right now. From the style of the show, to its fighting and looks, the chairman was sold on the franchise while also talking about the mystique of the mythology that fits perfectly with a TV format. He mentioned that was the reason why The Continental has always stuck around among all the other pitches.
Kevin said it was the creative team behind YouTube series Wayne that sold a pitch he loved for The Continental. "We were really blown away because it solved a bunch of problems and was super exciting, about a crumbling New York in the 1970s," featuring a young Winston and the group that would eventually start the hotel business, he explained.
"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," Kevin continued. He also went on to mention that the show would be three 90 minute pieces, and can be considered as a limited event series.
The chairman of Lionsgate TV division went on to state that the earlier idea of Keanu Reeves appearing in The Continental will not be possible. The timeline is a little different and Keanu will most likely take up a executive producer role with the film's writers and director also getting involved in some capacity. Ian McShane, the original Winston will also likely be involved as a voiceover character.
There is currently no casting news to report. Also, the release date will probably be somewhere around in the fall of 2022. But one thing is for certain, all the episodes will be available for streaming on Starz.
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