After years as a stuntman, Chad Stahelski broke through the director barrier by co-directing the under-the-radar action film, John Wick , alongside the uncredited David Leitch. After the cult success of the first film, Stahelski was brought back to direct the sequel John Wick: Chapter 2, which hit theaters just a few days ago. (Leitch meanwhile has moved on to direct The Coldest City and next will tackle Deadpool 2.)
Stahelski has already been lined up to direct a Highlander reboot that he hopes will be a trilogy, and should John Wick 2 prove to be a profitable film, a third should not be far away either. However, beyond helming these two franchises, he now has his eyes set on James Bond.
MovieWeb spoke to Stahelski in the lead up to the theatrical release of John Wick 2 and they asked him if he would be interested in tackling the 007 franchise. Stahelski’s response illustrated how well he understood the challenges that would bring:
“I’m interested in projects where you can world create. To jump back into somebody else’s world where it’s already been around for so long would be scary. But if there was one property, that wouldn’t be a bad one to try and invest yourself. Especially because of the ebb and flow of the Bond universe right now, I think the timing is good for a slight reinvention with a different perspective shift. Bond has gone from completely serious to totally cheeky to really fun again, to emotional, to serious, to internal, to external. I would love to give the pitch and if they got my wacky version of it, and it fit, yeah. That’s almost a dream too big.”
The Bond films have seen many incarnations over the years, but none can boast the great action scenes that Stahelski has shown a mastership in creating. Whether it is hand to hand combat or unique shootouts (there are a number of great ones in John Wick 2) there is no doubt that he could once again help set the standard of what the Bond movies can be moving forward.
The future of the Bond franchise itself is currently in a state of flux. The theatrical rights to the movies, as far as we know, have not been renewed by Sony or purchased by another company. The most recent star, Daniel Craig, has had wildly differing thoughts on whether or not he wants to return for a fourth film. The issue of which studio will finance and distribute the next film (the 25th in the franchise) will be necessary to sort out before considering a director. Depending on how and when these issues pan out will have a huge impact on the possibility of Stahelski directing.