Apart from getting a kick-ass strong character, John Wick’s universe gets a strong emotional backstory too with Halle Berry joining in as Sophia. In an exclusive interview, the Oscar-winning actress and John Wick 3 director Chad Stahelski together talk about being a part of this action franchise starring Keanu Reeves. Excerpts:
What does Halle’s character Sophia bring to the John Wick universe?
Chad Stahelski: I think we get a little John Wick backstory. We have world expansion and we get a kick-ass female character doing something for I think the right reasons and showing the depth of the emotionality we can have in our world. It’s not just plugging an actress into an action role. We get a little bit of emotion behind it.
Were you always a fan of John Wick?
Halle Berry: John Wick One, I saw it in the cinema and I loved it the first time I saw it. I love the world. I loved when I saw Keanu doing everything he did. And I mean he’s gone 300 times further now. But the first movie I was just blown away and I thought, wow, we have all this access to CG and we’re seeing all these superhero movies. But here it was just a guy who was doing this for real. And I got really lit up by that. And then so the second one I got more lit up and when I heard they were making a third one, I was like, okay, wait a goddamn minute. Somebody is putting me in this movie. There’s no way I’m not going to be in this movie. So luckily Chad let me do that.
Chad you wrote Sofia’s character only for Halle Berry?
Chad Stahelski: Absolutely! Well put it this way the character, the character’s name was there before we met Halle Berry and after we met Halle Berry we rewrote the entire character so the character on screen was written for her.
Halle what had you heard about Keanu before getting to work with him?
Halle Berry- What I have heard and what a lot of people heard is that he is the nicest man in the whole wide world.
How does the franchise continue to attract such high quality cast and crew?
Chad Stahelski: It’s a complete mystery to me. Actually I have no idea but I am happy for it. You know hopefully it has something to do with the look that we give it. We try to make action look very pretty like the aesthetic. The fact that we try to bend the rules of filmmaking a little bit. I’d like to think that I offered an environment that is collaborative and creatively open to express a lot of ideas to take it somewhere else.
Halle, you have some extensive scenes with the dogs in the film…
Halle Berry: I loved these dogs. I really did. I spent five months with them. 3-4 days a week going over training with them, learning them and learning me and really getting to understand how they are and they work. That was great. I love animals. I have two dogs and so everything I learned from there, I’ve been able to parlay that into my real life. Like I have these killer labradoodles now.
Chad Stahelski: They wear a bulletproof vest when they deliver the newspaper.
Halle Berry: Somebody comes to the door. I have all these commands for them now. They really could attack somebody. I mean, I don’t know if they’re going to go for the balls, but they could really attack somebody.
How was it filming in Morocco?
Halle Berry: I thought it was beautiful. It was a nice change far away, far from the world. It was colourful. I could smell it through the screen you know it’s palpable.
Chad Stahelski: Same you know with juxtaposition to New York city, an Arabic environment that had such a rich and colourful palette.
The John Wick series redefines action films…
Halle Berry: The John Wick series has brought a revolution in action genre and it is something different from what we are offered today. It’s real life action and it is beautiful. It won’t disappoint it has got Keanu Reeves who I think single-handedly who is one of the only guys in this generation that can really get away with it. I know that’s what I watch for whenever I watch these movies.
Starring Keanu Reeves and Halle Berry, John Wick 3, the third installment of the blockbuster franchise is produced by Erica Lee and directed by Chad Stahelski. The biggest action franchise John Wick: Chapter 3 – Parabellum released by PVR Pictures is currently running successfully in theatres.