Japanese-British pop star Rina Sawayama has marked her big screen debut by landing a lead role alongside Keanu Reeves in John Wick: Chapter 4. Based in London, Sawayama released her debut studio album, Sawayama, to critical acclaim last year after signing with Dirty Hit. She previously appeared on the small screen alongside Idris Elba in the Netflix comedy series Turn Up Charlie, but hasn't yet been featured in a theatrical movie role.
That changes with the news of Rina Sawayama landing a substantial role in the fourth John Wick movie. At this time, no additional details have been revealed about her role, but Deadline reports that the singer will be starring alongside Reeves. Director Chad Stahelski, who's back to direct John Wick 4 after helming the original and its two sequels, confirmed the news with a statement given to the outlet.
"I'm so glad to have Rina on board to make her feature film debut in John Wick: Chapter 4," Stahelski said. "She's an incredible talent who'll bring so much to the film."
We can also expect to see Ian McShane reprising his franchise role in the upcoming sequel. In march, the actor spoke about the project to give fans an update, revealing that shooting was planned to start in July. He also revealed how there were no longer plans to shoot John Wick 5 back to back with Chapter 4, which was the original plan.
"I spoke to Keanu. I spoke to him the other day," McShane said, via Geek Vibes Nation. "I spoke to the director and they're hoping, I mean, they're hoping now that writing the script now for, Chad told me probably around about maybe like summertime, July, I mean, they're not going to do four and five again, which is what they announced two years. They were going to do four and five together, you know, like do a four and five, which they often do."
Though Stahelski is back in the director's chair with Keanu Reeves and McShane returning, not every member of the John Wick family is coming back. Derek Kolstad, who created the series and served as a writer on all three prior installments, was not invited to contribute to the script for John Wick: Chapter 4. The writer has since moved on to what will hopefully spawn a similar franchise as the screenwriter of the hit action movie Nobody with Bob Odenkirk.
"I'm actually not involved in four and five," Kolstad told Collider in March. "At a certain stage of the studio will tell you, your creation is graduated, and you wish it well. I'm still close with Chad, still close with Dave, and I don't know what's going to happen, but I'm excited to see."
John Wick: Chapter 4 is currently scheduled to be released on May 27, 2022. Production is slated to begin this summer on location in France, Germany, and Japan. Basil Iwanyk, Erica Lee, and Chad Stahelski are producing, with Keanu Reeves and Louise Rosner serving as executive producers. This news comes to us from Deadline.