De coté, Mr. Wick

Keanu Reeves reveals which John Wick 3 scene inspired the upcoming spinoff

The star of the series is set to help out in its spinoff.

Keanu Reeves is staying on pointe.

At CCXP in Brazil, an annual pop culture convention that’s turned into a late-in-the-year news drop for studios, the John Wick star joined a panel previewing John Wick: Chapter 4 and the franchise’s upcoming spinoff film, Ballerina, starring Ana de Armas.

Reeves revealed that he’ll have a small role in the spinoff, as well as the basic premise of Ballerina and how it ties into the larger Wick universe.

As Reeves puts it, Ballerina is about a young woman “who has some very difficult circumstances and who's looking for revenge.”

Reeves said that Ana de Armas’ character is seeking vengeance for her murdered father. “Who could that be? And so it's her journey for actually understanding her past. She lost her father at a young age, and she doesn't really know what happened. Only that someone came into the house and killed her father, who had a tattoo. And as we know in John Wick, if you have a tattoo, something's going on.”

On December 3, Keanu Reeves appeared at CCXP to confirm his participation in the John Wick spinoff film Ballerina.Ricardo Moreira/Getty Images Entertainment/Getty Images

“I got to be in it, so I'm in it for a few sequences,” Reeves added. “So that was nice. They're filming right now, and the script's great, the story's cool. [I’m] looking forward to it.”

Originally written in 2017 as a separate project, Ballerina was acquired by Lionsgate and rewritten to fit the John Wick continuity. In 2019, Deadline reported that Len Wiseman, director of the Underworld film series, would helm the project.

Two years later, Deadline reported that Ana de Armas’ role is the same unnamed character that real-life ballerina Unity Phelan played for a few minutes in John Wick: Chapter 3 — Parabellum.

Ballerina doesn’t have a release date, but principal photography commenced in early November. It might seem bizarre that the spinoff is based on a single scene from Parabellum, but as director and series co-creator Chad Stahelski told Inverse in 2019, ballet is one of his biggest obsessions.

“I have seen the New York City Ballet a dozen f***ing times in my life,” Stahelski said. “I’ve seen real ballet. It is not what you think. Behind the scenes, behind the grace, the beauty, it’s f***ing pain and suffering. They’re some of the toughest athletes I’ve ever met, gymnasts and ballerinas.”

Ballerina veers off from a few key scenes in John Wick: Chapter 3 — Parabellum, which introduces The Director (Angelica Huston) as the head of an elite assassin’s academy.Lionsgate

The tactical hand-to-hand combat in the John Wick movies is also influenced by dance. “My choreography team, I’m insistent they study from dance,” Stahelski said. “In choreography, you have to make the other guy look good. You have to leave space to flip and fly and be ahead of them. You have to have an incredible memory.”

Ballerina isn’t the only upcoming John Wick spinoff. A prequel TV series, The Continental, is set to explore the origins behind the hotel that serves as a hub for New York’s assassin underworld. It will star Colin Woodell in the role of a young Winston Scott, who appears in the films as an older character played by Ian McShane, and will stream on Peacock in 2023.

Between Ballerina, The Continental, and John Wick: Chapter 4, the next year belongs to John Wick.

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