While the original Highlander was not a huge success by any means, the film found life on home video in the form of a rabid fan base, which spawned various movie sequels and even a few small-screen iterations. The sequels were not well received, most notably Highlander II: The Quickening which attempted to alter the mythology introduced in the first film by making the Immortals from outer space. In spite of this, love for the first Highlander has not waned over the years, which has naturally led to development of a reboot. Though many filmmakers have been attached at one point or another, director Chad Stahelski (John Wick franchise) is the most recent director to take a crack at the project.
Stahleski apparently has ambitious plans for the franchise, which includes turning his reboot into the first entry for a potential trilogy as well as incorporating the same visceral action style seen in the John Wick films. Still, some fans have expressed concern at the project given the track record of the Highlander sequels. Recently, however, Stahleski has revealed his thoughts on the original sequels and how they have affected his own ideas for the reboot.
While speaking with EW, Stahleski first and foremost promised that there would be no extraterrestrial background for the Immortal characters in his Highlander reboot. Stahleski also revealed that he’s most interested in exploring the actual world of the Immortals, which he believes previous entries didn’t explore satisfactorily. For his full thoughts on what he plans for the reboot, read below:
“When I came on, the property had already been developed for a couple of years and, as things happen in Hollywood, yeah, there was aliens, meteors, spaceships, uh, DNA mutations, terrorists. I mean, they’d tried to drag every plot into the Immortal world. My personal opinion, I don’t want to see any of that. I’m not interested. I have seen other movies like that. I haven’t seen the Immortal world.
“What, you met four Immortals on the first movie? I think I can introduce you to an entire world of Immortals. Imagine the great characters you could have. I mean, it speaks for itself. So, that’s the plan: to stay as true as we can to the original mythology, and just expand the world, and have fun within the world — without bringing in interstellar travel!”
This can only be good news for fans who were dreading another Highlander film with alien ties or really anything else that flies in the face of established mythology introduced in the original film. It seems that Stahleski really wants to respect established lore and produce a reboot that will please both new and old fans.
As far as exploring the actual world of Immortals, this is indeed something previous entries did not particularly seem interested in doing, with maybe the exception of Highlander: The Series, which came the closest to pulling back the curtain of the Immortals and their way of life. It wouldn’t even be surprising if Stahleski was somewhat inspired by the television series, as he’s revealed to be pulling material from it before. Either way, even for fans who are not looking forward to yet another reboot can at least rest a little easier knowing that the director seemingly respects the source material as much as they do.
Screen Rant will keep you updated on any information for the Highlander reboot as it becomes available.