The John Wick TV series is happening, people. While we heard a while ago that Lionsgate was developing a TV adaptation of the popular Keanu Reeves action franchise, titled The Continental, Starz made it official today that it will be the network home of the in-development series. The fit makes perfect sense as Starz has a bit of a genre bent with its original programming, from hits like Outlander and Black Sails to the upcoming spy series Counterpoint.
The Continental will be set in the John Wick universe, focusing on the inner workings of the exclusive Continental Hotel, which serves as a refuge for assassins. Chris Collins, whose resume runs from The Wire to Man in the High Castle, will write the series and serve as showrunner. Basil Iwanyk, John Wick co-director and John Wick: Chapter 2 director Chad Stahelski, franchise screenwriter Derek Kolstad, John Wick co-director David Leitch, Reeves, and Collins will serve as executive producers.
Starz’s president made clear that the show and the movies will exist “side-by-side,” so the existence of The Continental doesn’t preclude more John Wick movies and vice versa.
Stahelski, who directed the upcoming Deadpool 2, will direct the premiere episode of The Continental, and he previously teased the possibilities that the TV series would provide:
“They’ve got a really good structure. It’s very tied to the film [in that] it’s about the Continentals all over the world, how certain people come into that world, and what happens in relation to those people, which is cool. I think the world is very vast, and everything I’ve heard from it is very positive. […] It’s something that studio seems very, very intent on [making] and very, very behind… You can be with the consigliere, concierge, the sommelier — you can be with all these different characters and walk through the world in different aspects; ones that I’m a little limited [from exploring] by staying with my lead guy.”
Stahelski also previously said he thought Reeves might make a cameo in the show, which would make sense given that John Wick: Chapter 3 is already in the works. Moreover, the show aims to include “thunderous fight sequences and intensely staged shootouts between professional assassins and their targets,” so this will 100% be an action TV series.
No premiere date has been announced but production on the show will likely get underway at some point this year for a debut in 2019 or so.