Exclusive Interview with JOHN WICK Directors David Leitch and Chad Stahelski
by Louis Love
I think it’s safe to say that John Wick is a super hero. He can take on several bad guys at once and come out victorious, especially if you mess with his dog. The bad guys fear him and the women love him. Wick uses advanced principles of Martial Arts and he is almost unstoppable. In fact, his ‘Kill-count’ in the movie is about 75.
John Wick opened in theaters on October 24, 2014 and is now available on Blu-ray. The film stars Keanu Reeves, Adrianne Palicki, Willem Dafoe and more. Last week I had the chance to interview first time directors David Leitch and Chad Stahelski (two of the coolest guys you could meet.) Yes, they are first time directors, but they are no strangers to big Hollywood films and it shows in John Wick. Between the two of them they have been stunt coordinators, actors, and producers on movies that include The Hunger Games, The Wolverine, The Expendables 2, TRON: Legacyand Rambo.
Here are some highlights from the interview
Louis Love: This is the first time you two directed a movie, how long have you been waiting for this opportunity?
David Leitch/Chad Stahelski: Our whole lives!
Louis Love: Why does it take so much time?
David Leitch / Chad Stahelski: Good point! I think we have been really trying to find a movie to direct for what I would say is three years? We direct a lot of “second units” which is stuff for bigger films. We where stunt coordinators before and this seemed like a natural progression to start to direct the whole narrative. We were looking for the right project. Since we were doing stunts and second unit we didn’t just want to step out and do something we did not believe in. This has been a huge hit for us as first time filmmakers.
Louis Love: You guys worked with Keanu Reeves before this in films such as The Matrix. Was it hard to get him on board?
David Leitch / Chad Stahelski : It was super easy because it was his idea first and he came to us. He wanted us to look at the action and direct the action sequences. When we read the script we were like it’s pretty much ALL ACTION and Keanu is involved, this would be a good opportunity to direct. We pitched it to Keanu.
Louis Love: Now, that the movie is a hit. Are you guys planning a sequel?
David Leitch / Chad Stahelski: Yeah! Lionsgate and Thunder Road are talking about it and we want to be involved. The story is in development. We would like to do someing that people want to see and we would be proud to do.
Louis Love: How important was the dog to establish the villains?
David Leitch / Chad Stahelski: It was hugely important because the character would not have been redeemed to go on this sort of “action kill fest” without something as horrific as that event.
Louis Love: What are you looking forward to most that’s in the Blu-ray?
David Leitch / Chad Stahelski: The features are fun and the star commentary. Yeah we sure Spielberg is taking notes [Laugh!]
Louis Love: Last question… Who would win in an all out battle? The Equalizer, Bryan Mills (Taken,) John Rambo or John Wick.
David Leitch / Chad Stahelski: We can’t believe that’s even a question. It’s a no-brainer. Rambo in open war combat, but John Wick in anything other than that!