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Pop culture obsessives writing for the pop culture obsessed.

John Wick: Chapter 3 gets a suitably violent new working title

Illustration for article titled iJohn Wick: Chapter 3/i gets a suitably violent new working titleem/em
Photo: John Wick: Chapter 2 (Lionsgate)

Hey, who wants a little Latin mixed into their enjoyably stupid, over-the-top action thriller? (Put your hand down, Boondock Saints.) ScreenRant reports today on a minor-but-telling behind-the-scenes change at the upcoming John Wick: Chapter 3, which has now had its working title shifted from the largely meaningless Alpha Cop to the far more menacing Parabellum. As fans of violence-adjacent Classicism are well aware, “Parabellum” is not only a gun thing (several gun things, actually), but also Latin for “prepare for war,” which feels like a pretty exciting hint at where this franchise is headed.

John Wick: Chapter 2 ended with Keanu Reeves’ gravel-voiced face-bullet dispenser turning his back on the chain of high-class establishments that provide him with his various tools of mayhem, fleeing an assassin-saturated New York with nothing but a fancy suit and his dog by his side. This new working title suggests that, rather than retire to a villa somewhere to count his gold and practice his pencil tricks, though, John’s going to swiftly get back into the game by entering into open war with the shadowy figures of the High Table, possibly with Laurence Fishburne’s cheerfully unscrupulous Bowery King at his side. (Fishburne is reportedly already signed up to return, along with Ruby Rose and Common.)

The JWCU (John Wick Cinematic Universe) is popping at the moment; besides this third movie, which will co-star Hiroyuki Sanada as the primary villain, and arrive in theaters in May 2019, there’s also The Continental, which landed at Starz earlier this year. The spin-off series will track the lives of all the other improbable murder masters who populate the bizarre mythology of Baba Yaga’s world. 

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