‘John Wick’ Prequel, ‘The Continental’ Will Mostly Center on 1 Character

After the success of John Wick 3 in summer 2019, the movie helped kicked off the “Keanussaince” and a slate of related spinoffs.

By the end of 2019, Lionsgate and Starz got fans excited about two other projects in the John Wick universe with Keanu Reeves’ involvement.

One of them is a TV series called The Continental, a title that’s self-explanatory for fans. The studio just gave an update on where the show stands, and which character will be at its center.

Keanu Reeves and Ian McShane arrive at Los Angeles screening of ‘John Wick: Chapter 3 – Parabellum’ in 2019
Keanu Reeves and Ian McShane arrive at Los Angeles screening of ‘John Wick: Chapter 3 – Parabellum’ at the TCL Chinese theatre on May 15, 2019 in Hollywood | Robyn Beck/AFP via Getty Images

‘The Continental’ was first announced in 2018

As part of the partnership between Lionsgate and Starz, The Continental joined a list of upcoming television projects. In July 2019, Starz COO Jeffrey Hirsch gave an update about the series during the Television Critics Association press tour and revealed it will be a prequel.

Named for the famous assassins’ haven, The Continental was described as an origin story for the hotel. At the time, Hirsch described it as “way back,” according to The Wrap.

“It will be a fresh look at The Continental as the hotel and how that came into the being of John Wick. It’s way back in terms of the timing,” he said. Additionally, the plan is for the TV show to arrive after the release of both John Wick film sequels.

While questions floated around about whether Reeves would appear in it, studio bosses did not want to commit to answer. Things have changed.

RELATED: Keanu Reeves Producing ‘John Wick’ Spinoff, ‘Ballerina’

The Continental will focus on Winston

During a recent interview with Deadline, Lionsgate chairman Kevin Beggs shared that the new series would focus on Ian McShane’s character, Winston. However, McShane will not be stepping into the role since The Continental takes places years in the past.

“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,” said Beggs.

He added that he story is thoughtfully planned out so that other stories in the John Wick universe will still be interconnected and make sense.

Beggs also said Reeves is in talks to produce but his famous character won’t appear due to The Continental’s timeline. However, the Matrix star and John Wick director Chad Stahelski have seen the scripts.

Other ‘John Wick’ characters may pop up in ‘The Continental’

When Stahelski spoke with Fandom in May 2020, he revealed that the stories connected to The Continental will come via different characters who are seen in the John Wick movies.

“The angle they’re working on The Continental TV show right now is a different perspective on the whole world. It’s coming at it from different characters’ point of views and what the breadth of the world is,” he said.

Stahelski explained that unlike the movies which follow a short time period in the life of one person, the show will veer into fresh territory.

“The angle that the other producers and writers on the TV show are coming from is a very different timeline structure and a very different perspective of character. About how deep the world goes, and not just assassins but everything that’s included.”

Production for John Wick 4 is due to start in summer 2021 and The Continental TV series will air on Starz.