John Wick franchise tops $1 billion at global box office as Lionsgate explores splitting up
Keanu Reeves stars in “John Wick: Chapter 4.”
What began with a retired hitman avenging his murdered canine has became a billion-dollar blockbuster film franchise for Lionsgate.
This week, the John Wick sequence, comprised of 4 movies starring Keanu Reeves within the titular position, crossed $1 billion at the global box office.
Each movie has generated considerably extra box office returns that its predecessor, a dynamic that is uncommon in Hollywood.
The first “John Wick” was broadly praised by critics and audiences for its extremely choreographed combat sequences, which have been usually shot in lengthy, single takes to convey the motion. In many motion flicks administrators and editors make the most of fast cuts and closeups, usually obscuring the combat choreography.
Guns blazing at the box office
Here’s how a lot every John Wick film has grossed worldwide, in keeping with Lionsgate:
- “John Wick” (2014): $87.7 million; estimated finances of $20 million to $30 million
- “John Wick: Chapter 2” (2017): $171.5 million; estimated finances of $40 million
- “John Wick: Chapter 3 – Parabellum” (2019): $326.7 million; estimated finances of $75 million
- “John Wick: Chapter 4” (2023): $425 million and counting; estimated finances of $100 million
The movie franchise has set up a miniseries referred to as “The Continental: From the World of John Wick,” which tells the story of how Winston Scott (performed by Ian McShane within the motion pictures) got here to personal and function The Continental resort within the Nineteen Seventies. The resort is a protected haven for assassins. The present will air on NBCUniversal’s Peacock streaming service later this yr.
Lionsgate can also be set to launch a by-product starring Ana de Armas referred to as “Ballerina.”
The milestone for its “John Wick” franchise comes as Lionsgate has been exploring its choices for the 2 key components of its enterprise – its movie studio and Starz cable and streaming unit.
Despite being overshadowed by bigger friends together with Warner Bros. Discovery, Disney, Amazon and Comcast‘s NBCUniversal, Lionsgate’s inventory has surged this yr. In February, the corporate reported earnings that beat expectations.
Lionsgate shares have been on a gentle rise within the final yr.
Lionsgate has been exploring its choices for Starz for a while now. Last yr, it held talks to promote a 20% stake in Starz, and had additionally engaged in talks with a number of potential consumers for its studio enterprise, CNBC beforehand reported. Originally, in 2022, the corporate had mentioned it anticipated to finish a sale or spinoff of Starz by the top of the summer season.
CNBC beforehand reported at the time Lionsgate had been leaning towards divesting its studio division, which has a sturdy library that additionally contains “The Hunger Games” franchise and TV sequence like “Mad Men,” as an alternative.
Lionsgate executives mentioned in the course of the February earnings name that the corporate was on observe to separate Lionsgate and Starz by September. “Separation will give our two core companies the chance to pursue strategic and monetary paths that is smart for every of them,” CEO Jon Feltheimer mentioned in February. “We’re exploring a variety of monetary methods to go away each corporations with sturdy stability sheets at the time of separation.”
In March, Feltheimer mentioned at an investor convention that the corporate was nonetheless “trying at a bunch of various options” when it got here to exploring strategic choices. “We do not want any cash, we have delevered ourselves,” referring to their debt load, he added.
Lionsgate is scheduled to report its fiscal fourth quarter earnings Thursday.
Disclosure: Comcast is the father or mother firm of NBCUniversal and CNBC. NBCUniversal operates Peacock.