What We Know about John Wick Spinoff “Ballerina” So Far


Thus far from what we’ve gleaned from Ryan Scott of MovieWeb and others is that the spin-off movie Ballerina is happening and Keanu Reeves is one of those set to produce the movie. Whether or not he’ll show up in this movie is hard to say, but some seem to think that it would be just for a cameo as the story would need to focus on the titular character so as to keep things in line and flowing as they should. What else is known at this point is that the story would flow from the idea that one of the ballerina’s in the employ of The Director, played by Anjelica Huston, had to endure the murder of her parents and in time became an assassin in her own right. In a way it would seem that this would expand the world of John Wick in a different direction as we might get a better look at just how he and many others were trained to be the efficient and ultimately heartless killers that they would eventually become. But apart from that it would almost seem that the purpose of the Ballerina is to show yet another killer’s point of view and her own story as it branches away from the main tale that we’ve grown accustomed to.

There’s a reason why this idea might not work and many other reasons why it would. Mike Fleming Jr. of Deadline has no more idea of who would star in the role of the ballerina, but it’s implied that the character that has spawned this idea was present in John Wick 3 when he went to ask The Director for help. In this case it’s enough to wonder if she’s beholden to The Director in a way that is currently making her wait for the desired vengeance she likely seeks or if The Director is slowly guiding her towards what she wants in her own way, which would seem to prepare an individual while getting what she wants out of them at the same time. It’s hard to say really since this sounds like it might devolve into a simple revenge story, which of course can become as convoluted as one can possibly imagine. But overall it does sound as though the story might be on the fast track but is still being developed in a way that will allow it to be considered as a fine addition to the John Wick universe rather than just another story of a person bent on revenge and nothing else.

Not everyone seems as excited about a spin-off however as Gabriella Geisinger of Digital Spy would agree with. The unfortunate aspect is that Geisinger is one of probably many that aren’t criticizing the movie itself, but the direction in which it’s being taken…by MEN. If you need to take a moment and sigh while rolling your eyes feel free, as I’ve done it a few times by now thinking that the ‘struggle’ of female directors to be noticed is wearing a bit thin at this point since it’s been well established that women can and do manage to match men when it comes to many fields, directing being one of the many. There are likely a few reasons why Len Wiseman has been tapped to direct this movie, and believe it or not, none of them are likely to be the fact that he’s a man, which, if it were true, would likely open the door for sexual discrimination in all its ugly glory. But to stand around and state that men can’t direct a movie with a female lead is tantamount to saying that women shouldn’t direct a movie that has a male lead. Doesn’t make a lot of sense in that regard, does it? That’d be a hard point to counter when you bring in names like Ava Duvernay, Kathryn Bigelow, Marielle Heller, Sofia Coppola, and several others. Granted, a lot of female directors do a wonderful job when it comes to directing female-led movies, but it’s not all about what gender you are, it’s the skill, the preference of those in charge, and who can bring the story to light in a way that the execs want to see. Wiseman is a proven director and has been seen to be capable of doing the job, so of course his name was bound to come up.

With that being said it’s enough to assume that we might hear a little more about how a man can’t possibly understand how to direct a female-led movie in the same manner as a woman can, which is an argument that should make you want to face-palm yourself with a protracted groan of irritation. Ballerina is set in a world that is dominated by both men and women as the third John Wick movie showed, and as such it has a much more diverse viewpoint that anyone with enough skill and vision could take on.

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