John Wick creator and franchise writer Derek Kolstad is not writing the screenplay for John Wick 4 or John Wick 5. With Chad Stahelski directing all three installments of the Keanu Reeves-led action movie trilogy, Kolstad has served as the screenwriter after first conceiving the character with the original movie's script. Though he had help with the screenplay for John Wick 3 with three additional writers, it was expected Kolstad would return along with Stahelski to develop the upcoming sequels.
As it turns out, that's not going to happen, as Derek Kolstad is not on the John Wick 4 writing team. Speaking about the sequels in a new interview with Collider, Kolstad reveals that he is no longer involved with the popular franchise, though he still harbors no hard feelings and remains supportive of the entire John Wick team.
"I'm actually not involved in 4 and 5. At a certain stage the studio will tell you, your creation is graduated, and you wish it well. I'm still close with Chad (Stahelski), still close with David (Leitch), and I don't know what's going to happen, but I'm excited to see."
Kolstad also detailed how his exit from the series wasn't his call, but as he understands how things like this are not unusual in Hollywood, he's not taking it to heart.
"No, it wasn't my decision. When you think of the [contracts] of these things, the third one I shared the credit with any number of people, they didn't have to come back to me, and so they didn't. So, you look at that, and you could be hurt, and I would - say, if I was 20 years ago - I would have been, but seeing what the industry is and how things go, I just believe that you bless everything and hope it all the best, and to the players involved who are doing other things elsewhere. And yeah, it's personal, so I'm never going to talk sh*t about John Wick. I want this thing to survive and thrive."
It's not exactly clear who's penning John Wick 4, but franchise star Ian McShane teased back in January that the sequel may start shooting sometime this year. At the time, the actor told Collider that the script is currently being written with the goal of filming in 2021.
"Keanu [Reeves] and I exchanged New Year's greetings and said, 'Hope to see you this year.' I know the script is being written and they're hoping to do it this year," McShane said. "I know they announced they were gonna do [John Wick 4] and [John Wick 5] together, but who knows. The studios announce all sorts of things. No doubt, at some point this year, we're gonna do John Wick 4."
In addition to the next two John Wick movies, a spinoff TV series dubbed The Continental is also in the works. While he doesn't seem to be involved in the franchise any longer, Kolstad teased that fans will get an update on the series "in the next couple of weeks." You can check out the interview with Kolstad at Collider.