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SYFY WIRE Chad Stahelski

Why The First John Wick Movie Spent Around $5,000 On CGI Dog Poop

You can get away with a lot in Hollywood, but feeding a puppy laxatives is way beyond the pale.

By Josh Weiss
A dog in John Wick (2014)

You can get away with a lot in Hollywood, but feeding a puppy laxatives is considered way beyond the pale.

And yeah, we get it. That's straight-up animal abuse and would never fly with the American Human Association. So what do you do when you absolutely need to show a creature defecating onscreen? Well, you turn to CGI, of course, though the resultant digital imagery may end up taking a crap-load (pun intended) out of your overall production budget. Okay, maybe not a crap-load, but just roll with the joke.

RELATED: John Wick Director Explains How Franchise Represents The Greek Myths Of Odysseus & Sisyphus

Why the first John Wick movie spent around $5,000 on CGI dog poop

In the commentary track for the original John Wick movie, director Chad Stahelski and co-director/producer David Leitch reveal that the turd dropped by John's ill-fated beagle puppy, Daisy — may she Rest In Peace — was entirely brought to life with VFX and cost around $5,000. That's one expensive deuce!

"They wouldn't let us give laxatives to the puppy," Stahelski says (our astute colleagues over at /FILM were first to point this out this fun bit of fecal trivia). 

"Actually, we turned that shot back in about 25 times," Leitch adds. Stahelski continues: "Yeah, the poop just wasn't makin' it." This exchange was most likely a joke between the filmmakers, but we wouldn't put it past a franchise known for its meticulous fight choreography to agonize over a single shot of puppy scat.

The John Wick saga officially continues Sep. 22 when the first episode of The Continental limited series drops onto Peacock. Episodes 2 and 3 are slated to premiere on Sep. 29 and Oct. 6, respectively. Serving as a prequel to the hit blockbuster films, the show explores how a young Winston Scott (played by Colin Woodell) took control of the assassin-centric hotel in '70s-era New York.

To celebrate The Continental's impending debut, the first three John Wick films will stream on Peacock throughout the month of September. John Wick: Chapter 4, meanwhile, can be found on Digital, 4K Ultra HD, Blu-ray, and DVD. The Wick-ified action returns to the big screen next summer with the Len Wiseman-directed Ballerina, which stars Ana de Armas and features guest appearances from Keanu Reeves, Ian McShane, and the late Lance Reddick.