Akiva Goldsman is returning to Warner Bros in a multi-year first-look deal, with a focus on the Keanu Reeves-starring Constantine sequel, Deadline has reported. The producer-writer is set to get the wheels rolling on the feature along with Reeves, Francis Lawrence, who is set to direct again, and JJ Abrams, who was previously attached to a Constantine reboot, which stood canceled.
The original feature saw Reeves as the cynical exorcist who had the ability to perceive and communicate with half-angels and half-demons. Goldsman is currently deep into the scripting process with Lawrence and Reeves, he teases that the feature will take fans back to a familiar world of good and evil while building on the themes of the original movie. Of writing the script for the new film, Goldsman revealed:
“The character is very much Keanu and the way he and Francis saw the world of good and evil, and the wonderful and authentic noir where there is a world behind the world of good and evil coexist with our world right up close. Beyond that, we are still discovering it as I am writing the script.”
The producer commended Reeves for not giving up on the idea for the sequel, “This is a credit to Keanu, who endlessly has said, ‘this is the character I want to return to,’” he said. After a huge shakeup at Warner Bros after merging with Discovery it was announced last fall that a sequel of the cult classic was in the works at the studio. David Zaslav’s new regime has stirred the studio quite a bit with a focus on big theatrical releases and canceling many projects to clear off the debt.
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Goldsman reveals that WBD heads Michael De Luca and Pam Abdy concur with his vision to “target thoughtful things that can play theatrically. We’re all trying to figure out where that strike zone is, and I want to be able to help with IP I know and find pieces that are a little more actor-ey and story driven but not as IP driven.” The trio has a long-standing relationship going back to their MGM days, from where the duo moved from to bolster Warner Bros theatrical franchise output.
Commenting on the new partnership De Luca and Abdy said in an official statement, “We’ve both known and worked with Akiva for years, and never cease to be amazed by his combination of filmmaking mettle and limitless imagination. We couldn’t be more thrilled to welcome him back to the Warner Bros. family, where he has delivered some of the Studio’s most successful and acclaimed projects of the past two decades.” Reeves will be next seen on John Wick: Chapter 4 which is celebrating Wick Week leading up to the release of the feature.
No further details about the project are revealed yet. Watch out for this space for further details.