Ahead of J. J. Perry‘s directorial debut Day Shift, the film’s producer—and John Wick director—Chad Stahelski chatted with Collider‘s Steve Weintraub about John Wick 4, the upcoming continuation of Stahelski‘s Keanu Reeves-starring action film franchise. Stahelski was asked by Weintraub about the length of the fourth entry in the series, saying that he had heard that Stahelki‘s cut of the film was pretty long. While Stahelski wouldn’t reveal the run time, he did say: “It’s longer than the other three, but not that long.”
John Wick was 101 minutes, John Wick: Chapter 2 was 122 minutes, and John Wick Chapter 3: Parabellum was 131 minutes. Which means the fourth installment is at least two hours and twelve minutes.
We then asked him how the editing has been shaping up and if he’s close to done. He told us:
“We’re on the final stretch for picture lock, and then we have our VFX music. But this is the furthest along I’ve ever been, this much in post. We love the music that we’ve got so far. We still have Tyler Bates doing the composition on some of the bigger sequences. VFX are going to be coming in throughout the rest of the year. But we’re dangerously close. In our edit, as far as our picture lock goes, we’re within a few minutes of locking. Our sequences are done. The movie is essentially done. There’s probably another few weeks of tweaking overall, then we lock picture, and we’re about music sound and the effects.”
In addition to discussing how the film is coming along, Weintraub also asked about the process of filming certain sequences, specifically asking if there are any action sequences that were planned and drawn up that the team questioned if they were actually going to be able to shoot it. Stahelski said that it’s not just action that they struggle with but everything from blocking, lighting, or even the entire effect of a scene. “Still got one of those that I think we’re inches away from cracking. So, I’m sweating that one a little bit, but if I pull that one-off, good.”
Speaking specifically about the process of getting action shots, Stahelski said that there are some practical obstacles that are in John Wick 4 that were great to solve.
“Yeah, we know until we got there, and we realized like, “Holy shit. It’s like a millions [tons] of water. How we going to do that?” So, there’s that, so we figured that one out and there’s one for the end of the film that I think we’ve almost got figured out, so we can be initiating, so I’ll have an end of the movie. So, I’ll let you know how that goes. You’d be the first to know.”
Weintraub asks Stahelski to clarify this previous statement, wondering if he means that they are still trying to solve the problem mentioned in the quote above or if it has already been shot. Stahelski replied by saying:
“Well, a lot of things go into when you start messing with you want to do things that can’t be like, “I can’t control the sun. I don’t even know, and I don’t think we can control the sun.” So, you start blocking and playing, and you want a certain look. So, we’ve tried to do something at the end that is emotional and has cool lighting and looks. And we took our best stab at it, how we shoot all the pieces. And now, putting them together, we’re still like, “Yeah, it’s a little bit more of a puzzle than we thought.” But we have the right people, so I think we’ll crack it.”
John Wick 4 arrives in theaters on March 24, 2023.