During today’s live Collider Connected interview, stunt maestros turned directors Chad Stahelski and David Leitch revealed they’re helping out with Lana Wachowski‘s The Matrix 4. Both Stahelski and Leitch were involved with the groundbreaking stunts on the original Matrix trilogy—Stahelski actually doubled for Keanu Reeves—before going on to co-create the John Wick franchise and, in Leitch’s case, direct Deadpool 2 and Hobbs & Shaw.
“It’s definitely, from what I know of it, it’s incredibly fun,” Stahelski said. “I think if you’re a fan of the original trilogy you’re gonna love this. Coming back with a vengeance.”
As for their specific roles, Stahelski stressed that it’s mostly conceptual as opposed to a full-on second unit position. This is down to the impressive fact that Lana Wachowski prefers to direct her own action, an increasingly rare trait in the MCU-led blockbuster franchise landscape.
“It’s more about the creative concept of some of the choreography and backing them up with stuff. Other than the Matrixes, most of their stuff…what makes [Lana] so great is she directs her own action. We’ve had second unit directors on some of the Matrixes just because of the logistics involved. But of late, and especially on Matrix 4, she’s directing her own action. The second units for them are mostly establishing shots, the B-sides of the some of the compositions for some locations. But Lana, she does her own action. She weaves it into the main unit stuff, which is why their stuff looks so good.”
Stahelski also noted that The Matrix 4 is a reunion of sorts for a production made up largely from the crew of the original Matrix movies.
“They were really cool. They asked us to help out with the choreography and some of the physical training for the guys. I’m helping out a little bit for a sequence, I think Dave’s helping out for a sequence. Lana’s come back with a lot of love to have a pseudo-family reunion, so that’s been a lot of fun. It’s been good to see a lot of the crew members again. We just finished doing a sequence in San Francisco before the pandemic started.”