5 things fans should know about John Wick 3, which arrives in cinemas May 16

Since first bursting into cinemas in 2014, John Wick quickly became one of the coolest hitmen around – and one of Keanu Reeves’ most beloved characters.

Critically and commercially successful, John Wick followed the titular character as he embarked on a quest for revenge after Russian gangsters murdered his puppy. Fans also dug the 2017 sequel, which continued the franchise’s gritty neo-noir tone.

John Wick: Chapter 3 – Parabellum is almost upon us, arriving in Australian cinemas on May 16. Here are five tasty tidbits about it that fans should know.

1) Parabellum is Latin for “prepare for war”

The first thing that needs to be addressed is that weird sounding title. Parabellum is one part of a Latin expression. Here’s the explanation given by Keanu Reeves about what it means:

“It’s part of that famous sentence, ‘Si vis pacem, para bellum,’ which translates as, ‘If you want peace, prepare for war.’”

If that wasn’t perfect enough for the John Wick franchise, parabellum is also the name of a couple of different guns. It refers to both a kind of machine gun and a kind of pistol.

2) Ian McShane will have an expanded role

Ian McShane, the very shouty actor best-known for playing the foul-mouthed saloon owner Al Swearengen in TV’s Deadwood, has appeared in all the John Wick movies so far.

He will play a bigger role in John Wick 3. McShane’s character is the owner of The Continental, a hotel that serves as a neutral territory for professional assassins. Director Chad Stahelski has said he is “a big part of the next one,” perhaps meaning that more shit is likely to go down at The Continental.

3) Wick rides a horse

Yep, a friggin horse.

4) John Wick has a bounty on his head of $14 million

The film will tell an ‘on the run’ type story, involving the protagonist fighting and killing his way out of New York.

Here’s the official synopsis:

“John Wick (Keanu Reeves) is on the run for two reasons… he’s being hunted for a global $14 million dollar open contract on his life, and for breaking a central rule: taking a life on Continental Hotel grounds. The victim was a member of the High Table who ordered the open contract. John should have already been executed, except the Continental’s manager, Winston, has given him a one-hour grace period before he’s “Excommunicado” – membership revoked, banned from all services and cut off from other members. John uses the service industry to stay alive as he fights and kills his way out of New York City.”

5) Wick’s dog is coming back

Oh yes, there’ll be dog. Fans dug the return of the hitman’s pooch in John Wick 2. This was the dog the protagonist rescued at the end of the first film, replacing his beloved beagle Daisy.

Fans will no doubt be chuffed to hear that the dog is returning for movie number three. Somebody even managed to take a photo of the dog on set. You know you’ve made it in the animal kingdom when the parrappazzi are, no pun intended, on your tail.

Having said that, we probably didn’t need that set pic, because the dog is on the poster. And by the way, how good is this poster?!

John Wick 3 arrives in Australian cinemas on May 16.