John Wick 4 director says they would've been "screwed" if they'd kept its original 225 minute runtime

 Keanu Reeves as John Wick in John Wick: Chapter 4
Keanu Reeves as John Wick in John Wick: Chapter 4

John Wick: Chapter 4 clocks in at 169 minutes, making it the longest installment of the Keanu Reeves-led franchise so far – but it was almost even lengthier according to director Chad Stahelski.

In a new interview with Indiewire, the filmmaker revealed that the original cut was a whopping 225 minutes. It didn't stay that way for long, though, as he knew they'd be testing cinemagoers' patience with such an extended runtime.

"Our first cut was three hours and 45 minutes, and it felt like three hours and 45 minutes. We were like, 'Oh, we're so screwed," Stahelski recalled, noting that they never set a specific time to cut it down to after that. "To be really honest with you, zero was planned out."

"You just compress, compress, compress," editor Nathan Orloff added. "I went through a pass where anytime someone repeated an idea they had already expressed, I cut it out. No repeated ideas. It's a very linear story, so there wasn’t a ton of reconstruction or rearrangement we could do. It was just a matter of sifting out what we didn't need."

Also starring Rina Sawayama, Donnie Yen, Lance Reddick, Hiroyuki Sanada, Laurence Fishburne, and Ian McShane, John Wick: Chapter 4 sees the titular assassin go global as he takes a stand against the High Table and the powerful Marquis Vincent de Gramont (Bill Skarsgård), who has challenged his position in the underground organization.

It is out in UK cinemas now, and releases in the US on Friday, March 24. For more, check out our list of the most exciting upcoming movies coming our way in 2023 and beyond.