In less than a month, John Wick: Chapter 3 - Parabellum opens in theaters everywhere and will see the return of Keanu Reeves as the eponymous assassin as he is pursued by the world's top contract killers. Of all the cross-promotion marketing associated with the acclaimed action film franchise, one of the most popular and surprising has been with the popular online shooter game Fortnite.
Approximately a year after the release of John Wick: Chapter 2, the video game introduced a new player skin, dubbed The Reaper, as part of its Hired Gun set of downloadable content. Directly inspired by Reeves' lethal character, the add-on proved especially popular with fans of both the film series and game. With the sequel weeks away, here's a look at the popular DLC and the likelihood of John Wick resurfacing in Fortnite to unleash his well-dressed brand of vengeance upon other player characters.
Who Is John Wick?
Portrayed by Keanu Reeves, John Wick is a retired hitman with a dark bloody legend throughout the criminal underworld and an order of assassins. Leaving behind his lethal occupation to get married and settle down, John is forcibly dragged back into a world of violence in the 2014 original film after Russian gangsters steal his car and kill the puppy his late wife left him.
The 2017 sequel had an old associate of John's, Santino D'Antonio, coerce him to fulfill a blood oath they had made prior to John's retirement and kill his sister for her position at the assassin order's high table. Upon carrying out his mission, Santino placed a large bounty on John's head, which culminated in John killing Santino on the grounds of the Continental, the safe haven of the assassins, which violated the order's most sacred rule. Parabellum begins immediately following this with a multi-million dollar attracting the attention of the world's top assassins to kill John after the transgression.
WHO IS JOHN WICK'S FORTNITE CHARACTER?
As a limited time Battle Pass player skin in February 2018, Fortnite released an outfit known as the Reaper. Wearing a full suit complete with black jacket and tie, as well as stark black hair with a bearded face and slightly scarred visage, the outfit is is visually inspired by John Wick; all but naming the downloadable character.
A legendary outfit available after clearing the Tier 100 of the Season 3 Battle Pass, a set of paid DLC for $10 or in-game currency. Jokingly referred to as Jason Wick by the developers, one of the legendary weapons included with the Season 3 Battle Pass was a massive, powerful pistol dubbed the Hand Cannon, favored by the Reaper.
WILL THE REAPER RETURN?
The Season 3 Battle Pass wrapped at the end of April 2018 and, with it, the availability for players to download and unlock the Reaper. However, even though this black-clad assassin may not currently be available in Fortnite, it is not unprecedented for limited time releases to return to the online game.
Just as Fortnite had included a dancing Thanos to tie-in with the release of Avengers: Infinity War last year, the game would include tie-in content for Avengers: Endgame this month, including the return of Thanos and other Endgame-related content. With a John Wick sequel weeks away from opening, the Reaper could very well make a similar return to the game for those that missed him the first time around. It wouldn't be surprising to see the Reaper's unofficial link to John Wick made official as part of the film's marketing campaign either.
The John Wick films have instantly been hailed as modern action cinema classics, lauded for stylish cinematography, tightly choreographed action sequences, and a no-nonsense performance from Keanu Reeves. The character has spread throughout many facets of pop culture including a John Wick-inspired character in Fortnite. And with fans looking for the next big DLC set from the popular shooter, a return of the character to the game would prove to be a surefire hit.
Directed by Chad Stahelski, John Wick: Chapter 3 - Parabellum stars Keanu Reeves, Ian McShane, Laurence Fishburne, Halle Berry, Jason Mantzoukas, Lance Reddick and Anjelica Huston. It opens on May 17 in theaters everywhere.