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Clint Eastwood and Harrison Ford missed out on very successful action franchise | Films | Entertainment

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Clint Eastwood, 94, and Harrison Ford 81 have had incredible Hollywood careers so far, from The Man With No Name Spaghetti Westerns to Indiana Jones.

But did you know that both were originally envisioned for one of the film industry’s biggest current action franchises that continues to grow in popularity and success?

It turns out that when screenwriter Derek Kolstad originally wrote John Wick, he’d conceived of the retired assassin being around 75-years-old and played by either Clint Eastwood or Harrison Ford, instead of the much younger Keanu Reeves.

The news comes from Edward Gross and Mark A Altman’s They Shouldn’t Have Killed His Dog: The Complete Uncensored Oral History of John Wick, Gun Fu, and the New Age of Action.

According to Entertainment Weekly, John Wick franchise producer Basil Iwanyk previously said: “The lead was a 75-year-old man, twenty-five years after being retired. It was the fun of watching Clint Eastwood kick ass. I thought, ‘Okay, there’s probably one or two names you could do this with: Clint Eastwood, Harrison Ford.’ Other than that, I’m not sure how I put this movie together. But the tone of the script for John Wick was subversive and really fun. It has a very clear emotional through line and a great premise for an action movie.”

However, when Keanu became involved, John Wick – who is set to have a fifth film –suddenly became much younger.

Iwanyk continued: “My other best friend in the world, this guy Jimmy Darmody, is an agent at CAA, who at the time represented Keanu. And he said, ‘Do you have any action movies for Keanu Reeves?’ I remember thinking to myself, ‘Keanu is one of the great action stars of the last 25 years — what happened to him? What’s he been doing?’ And he was directing his movie, Man of Tai Chi, and doing 47 Ronin. We give him the script, we tell him, ‘Clearly, you’re not 75.'”

We had talked internally about actors, but it was Keanu Reeves — a voracious script reader; anything he gets his hands on, he reads — who got his talons into it and made it his own… The first thing that Keanu said to me was, ‘Okay, Derek, I’m going to play him 35.’ And I’m like, ‘Fine.'”

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