Some of us could be watching a Keanu Reeves double feature this weekend if not for the pandemic delaying the simultaneous premieres of John Wick 4 and The Matrix 4. Back in 2019, which admittedly seems like such a long time ago at this point, John Wick 4 was given a May 21, 2021 release date months after John Wick 3 was released. Soon after, Warner Bros. set The Matrix 4 to premiere on the very same day, pitting two anticipated Keanu movies head to head.
It would have been interesting to see how these movies would have performed premiering against one another, but there would undoubtedly be many fans opting to see both movies this weekend. For better or for worse, it just wasn't meant to be, as John Wick 4 was officially delayed by almost a full year to May 27, 2022, just months after the pandemic. The Matrix 4 would follow suit by getting postponed to April 1, 2022, though it has since been moved up to Dec. 22, 2021.
After serving as a writer for all three previous installments, John Wick creator Derek Kolstad wasn't brought back to pen John Wick 4. The new sequel will instead be written by Michael Finch, and nothing has been revealed about the story. In March, Kolstad explained in an interview with Collider that it wasn't his decision to leave the franchise, but Warner Bros. had actually fired him. Even so, he wishes the project well for the sake of everyone else involved.
"I'm actually not involved in 4 and 5," Kolstad said, referring to reports of John Wick 5 shooting back-to-back with John Wick 4. "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 added: "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."
As for The Matrix 4, what we know is that Keanu Reeves will reprise the role of Neo alongside other returning stars Carrie-Anne Moss as Trinity, Jada Pinkett Smith as Niobe, Lambert Wilson as The Merovingian, and Daniel Bernhardt as Agent Johnson. Newcomers to the series include Priyanka Chopra, Yahya Abdul-Mateen II, Neil Patrick Harris, Jessica Henwick, and Jonathan Groff. Lana Wachowski directs using a screenplay co-written with David Mitchell and Aleksander Hemon.
The Matrix 4 will also be simultaneously streaming on HBO Max for a month starting from the date of its theatrical premiere on Dec. 22, 2021. Fans will then have another five months to anticipate Reeves' next action movie sequel, which also just so happens to be the fourth installment of a popular franchise, with John Wick 4 releasing on May 27, 2022. Catching both movies on the big screen as part of a double feature would have been the ultimate experience for a Keanu Reeves fan, but we can only imagine what could have been.