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'The Continental': Peacock nabs 'John Wick' prequel series about a young Winston

The hotly-anticipated project is expected to debut sometime in 2023.

By Josh Weiss
Ian McShane in John Wick: Chapter 3 (2019)

Calling all assassins! The Continental — an upcoming television series that will serve as a prequel to the fan favorite John Wick film franchise — has officially moved from Starz to Peacock, the NBCUniversal-owned streaming service announced today.

Slated to premiere sometime next year, the show takes place in 1975 and centers around a young hotel manager by the name of Winston Scott (Colin Woodell playing the character made famous on the big screen by Ian McShane). Hoping to leave his mysterious past behind, Winston navigates the seedy underworld of New York City in an effort to seize control of the titular establishment, which serves as a meeting place for the world's most dangerous criminals.

Ayomide Adegun (a young Charon, based on Lance Reddick’s character from the movies); Peter Greene (body disposal expert Uncle Charlie), Mel Gibson (Cormac), Ben Robson (Frankie), Hubert Point-Du Jour (Miles), Jessica Allain (Lou), Mishel Prada (KD), and Nhung Kate (Yen) co-star.

“The John Wick films have become a global phenomenon, are among the most watched titles on Peacock and we are thrilled and honored to partner with Lionsgate to extend this incredible franchise," Kelly Campbell, President, Peacock and Direct-to-Consumer, said in a statement Monday. “We understand the value of a global franchise and Val Boreland and team knew that by bringing this special event series to Peacock and putting the full power of NBCUniversal behind it, the premiere of The Continental will be the streaming event of the year.” 

John Wick has become part of the cultural zeitgeist with a massive, passionately engaged fan base around the world,” added Lionsgate Television Group Chair Kevin Beggs.  “We’re delighted to partner with Peacock to continue expanding the John Wick Universe.  This agreement reflects the collaboration of our Motion Picture Group, which has grown the franchise from the beginning and was excited by the opportunity to bring it to the next level, Jim Packer and his Worldwide Television Distribution team, which found the perfect home for The Continental, and the Lionsgate Television creative group, which created a brilliant and enduring property that is one of the most highly-anticipated streaming events of 2023.” 

Greg Coolidge (Ride Along) and Kirk Ward (Skyward) are writers and showrunners on the spinoff, which has been in development since early 2018. Albert Hughes, Basil Iwanyk, Erica Lee, Derek Kolstad (creator of the John Wick IP), Chad Stahelski (longtime John Wick director), David Leitch (longtime John Wick producer), Shawn Simmons, Paul Wernick, Rhett Reese, and Marshall Persinger are also attached as executive producers.

The Continental is Reese and Wernick's second Peacock endeavor after the Twisted Metal series with Anthony Mackie. Known for co-directing From Hell and The Book of Eli with his twin brother, Allen, Albert Hughes directed the first and third episodes. Charlotte Brandstrom (The Lord of the Rings: The Rings of Power) helmed the second episode.

A fourth John Wick movie (directed by the returning Stahelski) is scheduled for a wide release on March 24, 2023. Click here to watch the first teaser trailer. To date, the series starring Keanu Reeves as an unstoppable killer with a soft spot for lovable canines has grossed nearly $600 million worldwide.