Yes, there have been plenty of false-starts for the intended revival and reboot of the Highlander franchise, but as we’ve noticed in recent months there’s been genuine momentum. It may still be (at least) months before there’s any action in front of a camera, but behind-the-scenes wheels are turning and swords are being sharpened.
Chad Stahelski, an ex-stuntman turned successful director and the man behind a lot of the success of the John Wick saga has been set as Highlander‘s director, developing the project over the last eight years, slowly edging it forward. With the John Wick franchise and other projects on his plate, some wondered if he’d be able to channel his obvious love for the Highlander franchise (both for the original film and the spin-off series) into making the film a priority. The answer seems to be ‘yes’ with Stahelski confirming to trade outlets such as The Hollywood Reporter and Variety that he intends to make it his next project.
During promotions for his other releases, Stahelski has spoken of his desire to energise the concept as a new franchise with a possible trilogy of films in the offing if the first film succeeds. He has also spoken about incorporating ideas from the first feature film and the series into part of a new spin on the existing mythology. This week’s confirmation appears to be part of cementing a new deal between Stahelski and Lionsgate and if all goes well, the film – which has already cast Henry Cavill – could go before the cameras later this year.
The Highlander reboot will also see Neal H. Moritz and the estate Peter S. Davis, the late producer of the original film involved in production.
“I am pleased to be able to grow my relationship with Lionsgate in this new oversight role for the John Wick universe and its further expansion,” said Stahelski in a statement. “John Wick is so close to my heart and to be able to continue shepherding it will be a blast for me. I’m so happy to also be launching another franchise with Highlander, a world that is so rich with engaging stories to be told.”