Chad Stahelski wants to explore an entire world of Immortals in Highlander

Chad Stahelski Highlander reboot

Lionsgate had been attempting to get a reboot of HIGHLANDER off the ground for nearly a decade before JOHN WICK: CHAPTER 2 director Chad Stahelski agreed to take the helm, and it seems that Stahelski has some ambitious plans for the rebooted franchise, which thankfully don't involve Immortals from outer space. The first sequel to the original HIGHLANDER somewhat famously revealed that the Immortals were not in fact human, but actually aliens from the planet Zeist. You're free to roll your eyes.

Chad Stahelski seems to be very passionate about the HIGHLANDER franchise as he plans on expanding the upcoming reboot into a trilogy. The director recently spoke with Entertainment Weekly about the upcoming project and how he aims to properly explore the world of Connor MacLeod and the Immortals without resorting to interstellar shenanigans.

When I came on, the property had already been developed for a couple of years and, as things happen in Hollywood, yeah, there was aliens, meteors, spaceships, uh, DNA mutations, terrorists. I mean, they’d tried to drag every plot into the Immortal world. My personal opinion, I don’t want to see any of that. I’m not interested. I have seen other movies like that. I haven’t seen the Immortal world. It’s like, John Wick could have interacted with terrorists and police — if you notice, there’s no police, other than (Thomas Sadoski’s character) Jimmy. I like to be insular. I want to see Immortals. I’m invested in the Immortal world. I think that’s very important.

My pitch initially was, ‘Look, I think there’s more here than I can fit in one movie. If I can crack the code of trying to string out the Gathering to three films, would you guys be interested?’ [They were] like, ‘If you can do it.’ Between me, and some of the conceptual people involved, we believe that we can. What, you met four Immortals on the first movie?  I think I can introduce you to an entire world of Immortals. Imagine the great characters you could have. I mean, it speaks for itself. So, that’s the plan: to stay as true as we can to the original mythology, and just expand the world, and have fun within the world — without bringing in interstellar travel!

Given Stahelski's background, it's probably fair to expect that HIGHLANDER will give us some next-level swordfights, after all, the Immortals have had plenty of time to hone their skills. "It’s got an action-design challenge," said Stahelski. "What would a guy really be like after 500 years of practicing sword-work? I’m still a stunt guy at heart. You want to reinvent gunfights, how do you do it? You want to reinvent swordfighting, how do you do it? And that’s where we are at now." Lionsgate has given Stahelski full rein to play with the franchise as he sees fit, and he's hoping to come up with an interesting way to introduce the franchise to new audiences "without stepping on what’s great about the original property." Stahelski added that "you don’t want to over complicate it. I think it speaks very simply: ‘There can be only one!’ ‘We’re immortals!’ ‘Don’t get your head chopped off!’"

Chad Stahelski's next, JOHN WICK: CHAPTER 2, will officially hit theaters tomorrow so make sure to check out a review from our own Chris Bumbray! Speaking of JoBlo's own, the latest TV spot for JOHN WICK 2 features a quote from none other than JimmyO!

Source: EW

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Based in Canada, Kevin Fraser has been a news editor with JoBlo since 2015. When not writing for the site, you can find him indulging in his passion for baking and adding to his increasingly large collection of movies that he can never find the time to watch.