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Ian McShane remembers 'John Wick' co-star Lance Reddick: 'He brought dignity and strength and gravitas'
"Our characters are so intertwined, and we became very close."
The John Wick community was shaken to its very core last month when news broke that franchise cast member Lance Reddick (known for playing The Continental's cool-under-pressure concierge, Charon) had passed away at the age of 60. Both Keanu Reeves and director Chad Stahelski paid tribute to Reddick by dedicating the fourth John Wick movie to his memory.
Thanks to the latest issue of Empire (now on sale), fans can read a touching epitaph from another Wick veteran, Ian McShane, who shared plenty of scenes with Reddick as The Continental's classy manager, Winston.
"Our characters are so intertwined, and we became very close," McShane said. "He was a delight: a marvelously composed, serious actor. He brought dignity and strength and gravitas. A graceful performer. And we'd make each other laugh. We did our press together — it made sense ... We're very different people — I'm much more of a joker than he is. I don't put fart cushions under everybody's seat, but we complemented each other very well in interviews. Those days always passed very easily and fondly."
McShane, who was able to do a bit of Chapter 4 publicity alongside his late co-star, learned of Reddick's untimely passing from Reeves while leaving a coffee shop in Venice, California. "I got a text from Keanu saying, 'Have you heard?' I went, 'What?' And he said, 'Lance passed.' And it was like, 'What the f***? Lance, 60, fit as a fiddle?' Life is fragile."
Per the official death certificate, Reddick died of heart-related complications, though his family refutes this assessment. Audiences can check out Reddick's penultimate performance as Charon in John Wick: Chapter 4. Now playing in theaters everywhere, the sequel is the best-reviewed entry of the entire series and has netted over $270 million worldwide so far.
"It's sad that we can't experience the great success of the film together," McShane concluded. "It's bittersweet — we're missing our brother. I'm still not over the shock. It's difficult watching the film, watching the demise of Charon [the character is tragically executed by the Marquis Vincent de Gramont]. I mean, his last line to Winston: 'It has been an honor, my friend.' Wow. Jeez. It has been an honor. A real honor. Thank you, Lance."
Reddick will appear as Charon one last time in next summer's spinoff film: Ballerina (directed by Underworld veteran, Len Wiseman). We'll get to see the origins of Winston and Charon's professional relationship when The Continental limited series arrives on Peacock this September. Colin Woodell and Ayomide Adegun are playing the young versions of Winston and Charon, respectively.
The first three John Wick films are currently streaming on Peacock.