WARNING: This article contains SPOILERS for John Wick: Chapter 4John Wick: Chapter 4 director Chad Stahelski details Lance Reddick’s reaction to Charon’s death. Stahelski has directed all four installments of the John Wick franchise which star Reddick as Charon, the concierge at the Continental Hotel in New York. On the eve of John Wick: Chapter 4’s premiere, Reddick sadly passed away at the age of 60. Early on during Chapter 4, Charon is killed by Marquis Vincent de Gramont (Bill Skarsgård), a senior member of the High Table whose position is threatened by John Wick.
With John Wick: Chapter 4 now playing in theaters, Stahelski spoke to The Hollywood Reporter to break down the movie’s most shocking moments. One of them was Charon’s death, which was decided long before Reddick’s passing, and the John Wick director shared the late actor’s reaction to his character’s tragic arc. Read what Stahelski shared below:
I spent ten years with Lance and Charon. But I called Lance after we had finished the script and went, “Okay, look, this is going to be a bit jarring, but I don’t want you to think I’m doing some gag or a Game of Thrones-type thing where we’re just killing you off for shock value or something like that. It’s going to happen in the first act, it’s going to mess up your head, you’re going to have questions but just promise me you’re going to read the whole thing. Just get to the end.” And to his credit, he called back and went, “Look, I can’t tell you I love it. I can’t tell you I’m not upset, but I can tell you that I don’t know another way to make this movie this good.” And again, that was Lance. He was such a great part of the property, and he was an integral part of it. The Continental exists with him and Ian McShane. That was our whole hook. But to his credit, as an artist and as a collaborative creative, he understood that you have to start with Charon dying.
Charon’s Fate Was Necessary, But A Reminder Of Reddick’s Death
As Stahelski explains, Charon’s death happening early on in John Wick: Chapter 4 was necessary in order to precipitate the events of the rest of the movie. Without it, there is no catalyst for Winston’s desire for revenge or him rekindling his friendship with Wick. While the death of Wick’s puppy is what famously set the events of the first film in motion and fueled the assassin’s desire for revenge, Charon’s death serves a similar purpose and acts as the inciting incident of Chapter 4.
However, Charon’s death is also a sad reminder of reality. After the actor’s passing, Keanu Reeves and Stahelski dedicated John Wick 4 to the late Reddick. Just as the actor’s untimely passing has loomed over the movie, Charon’s death looms over the events of the film and motivates the main characters’ actions. After John Wick: Chapter 4, Reddick will posthumously return as Charon in the upcoming spinoff film Ballerina, which is set between the third and fourth chapters, marking his final appearance.