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God love Ian McShane. The man is a gift, and he is never dull. The 76-year-old actor is out there promoting American Gods, the Deadwood movie, the Hellboy reboot, and -- of course -- the new John Wick movie. McShane's Winston returns for John Wick: Chapter 3 - Parabellum, which opens in May. Ask him about the movie, and this is what he'll say:
That will be big and that will be good.
Slow your spoilers, man! That was Ian McShane to the New York Times, as part of a larger interview about his many upcoming projects. It ain't much, but he's right that the third John Wick movie will be big -- it's meant to have the highest death count of the franchise so far, and the director said it's about 20% more movie than Chapter 2.
The follow-up question to Ian McShane added more potential clues. Or it might just confuse you.
Ian McShane's John Wick character Winston is the owner of the Continental Hotel, which is neutral ground for the criminal underworld. John Wick (Keanu Reeves) did a major no-no in the second movie to kill on Continental grounds. He was excommunicated, with a $14 million global contract out for his life. Everyone is after him. But Winston, that old softie, gave Mr. Wick a one-hour head start. Winston also gave John a Marker for potential use as a favor.
Ian McShane was asked if there would be payback against Winston for letting John Wick get away. Here's his answer:
Well, the High Table doesn’t like anybody stepping out of line so maybe they’ll take me to task, giving John an out, even. And you’ve got Laurence Fishburne and me, and maybe we get together, maybe we’re unvirtuous. Who knows? Because nothing is the same.
Nothing is the same? Yes, Laurence Fishburne is also returning as underground crime boss The Bowery King, and one of the first photos promoting John Wick 3 showed Winston and The Bowery King standing together. Here is that photo:
Are they plotting to help John? Just plotting to help themselves if the High Table turns on them? What's this about nothing being the same?
Ian McShane had previously teased a lot of "shifting alliances" in John Wick 3, so maybe that ties into this potentially unvirtuous team-up.
Speaking of the High Table, John Wick 3 sees the addition of Anjelica Huston as The Director, a member of the High Table who has a connection to John Wick's past. Halle Berry joins the movie as assassin Sofia, who also has a connection to John's past. So we're going to get to know more people who knew John way back when. It sounds like maybe not everyone on the planet will be trying to kill John to get that money, but he'll be facing quite a few foes ahead -- some new, some familiar. Thankfully he has his own dog by his side, plus two more that Halle Berry's Sofia has on hand.
What will Winston's role be in all of this be? We'll have to wait and see. Ian McShane also echoed what he had previously said about maybe doing a voice-over for The Continental TV spinoff series, but not appearing himself as Winston. There haven't been many details on that John Wick series yet, but it's meant to be set in Los Angeles, as opposed to the New York hotel of the John Wick films.