Chad Stahelski, who Deadline already told you was set to direct the reboot of Highlander starring Henry Cavill, has inked a deal with Lionsgate to oversee the creative on both that franchise and John Wick. Remember, John Wick is beginning to spinoff with the Ballerina this summer; Stahelski already an EP on that film.
Stahelski will have supervision of the brands across film, television, and all multimedia platforms. “The director and his team at 87Eleven Entertainment have taken the lead in designing a comprehensive multi-platform content strategy for both franchises,” reads a press release this AM.
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Stahelski will work side by side with the franchise producers – Thunder Road’s Basil Iwanyk and Erica Lee on the Wick franchise and Neal H. Moritz and the estate of the late Peter S. Davis on Highlander.
“This deal expands on the great creative relationship we already have in place on John Wick and extends it to our Highlander franchise,” Joe Drake, the outgoing chair of the Lionsgate Motion Picture Group and Adam Fogelson, chair of the MPG, said. “From the outset, Chad has been the creative force defining the world of Wick; as we continue to think about the future for that world, we want Chad, working together with Basil Iwanyk and Erica Lee of Thunder Road, as our stewards guiding us and strategizing together at every step. This deal makes it official, and we look forward to his steady hand and creative input not just on the film he is making, but other stories that arise from it. He is a true visionary, and we are thrilled to have him in our corner.”
“I am pleased to be able to grow my relationship with Lionsgate in this new oversight role for the John Wick universe and its further expansion,” said Stahelski. “John Wick is so close to my heart and to be able to continue shepherding it will be a blast for me. I’m so happy to also be launching another franchise with Highlander, a world that is so rich with engaging stories to be told.”
Stahelski’s John Wick Chapter 4, which was a bright spot at the 2023 box office with north of $440M WW, has just seen his stunt team from the pic get a SAG Award nomination for Stunt Ensemble. Stahelski, a former stuntman himself, has been lobbying the Academy to have stunt work recognized at the Oscars. John Wick movies are directed in their own style: While there’s a screenplay that serves as a spine, much of the film’s action scenes come together through location scouts and the stunt and fight choreography teams.
Working with Thunder Road’s Basil Iwanyk and Erica Lee, Stahelski was an EP on the John Wick Peacock spinoff series The Continental, which Lionsgate Television produced for Amazon and the NBC streamer, where it became the platform’s biggest original launch of 2023. In the upcoming Ballerina, Ana de Armas plays an assassin trained in the traditions of the Ruska Roma. Len Wiseman directs. Pic hits theaters on June 7.
Stahelski is represented by WME, attorney Tara Kole, and Mortimer PR.
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