'John Wick' Originally Had Only Three Kills in the Whole Movie

Joe Anderton
·2 mins read
Photo credit: Warner Bros.
Photo credit: Warner Bros.

From Men's Health

The John Wick movies are known for their intense violence and high body-counts, as well as for bringing Keanu Reeves back to prominence.

But originally, the first film was meant to be a very different affair, with only a grand total of three people kicking the bucket in the script. That's a lot less than the 80-ish in the final version of the 2014 movie.

Speaking to ComicBook.com, the first film's co-director (and solo director of the other two) Chad Stahelski said: "I think [Keanu] sent it to me on a Friday and I read it maybe that day and thought about it over the weekend.

Photo credit: Warner Bros.
Photo credit: Warner Bros.

Related: John Wick's original title changed because Keanu Reeves kept getting it wrong

"It was much more contained. I think only three people died in the original script, two were in a car crash. It was very, very minimal, and it was slightly different. I read it, and I'd always had this idea about Greek mythology and how to tell more a fable-istic kind of story, make a surreal action movie so it wasn't so grounded and grey, just something different.

"People joke about [the kill count], but the way I choreograph with my guys and stuff, we just choreograph motion and set pieces and we try to get this balletic kind of dance, live performance feel to everything.

Photo credit: Lionsgate
Photo credit: Lionsgate

Related: How John Wick got one of its major themes wrong

"I think, just by nature, because Keanu's gotten so much better with the choreography and the martial arts and the motion and we change weapons so much and we get bigger set pieces, that, just by its very nature, because the scene grows, the body count grows."

Stahelski previously said that they are hard at work trying to "crack" the fourth movie, while a fifth one has already been announced.

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