Chad Stahelski is fully aware of the risks of his profession. He’s an American stuntman and film director. He is known for his artistic contributions to the film “John Wick,” as assistant director, then lending his expertise to the following two films in the franchise as director. Throughout his career, Chad has been involved in behind the scenes activities that the majority of fans are not aware of, and has served as double for many stars, in dangerous scenes requiring his expertise as a stuntman. He’s led an interesting life, and here are five things that you probably didn’t know about him.
He turned down an audition for “The Matrix” (1999)
Stahelski declined to audition for the role of stunt double for Keanu Reeves in the film. At the time, he didn’t believe that he would make the cut and thought it would be a waste of his time. It was his boss who forced him to audition anyway. Chad nailed the audition and went on to double for Reeves in “The Matrix Reloaded” in 2003, then again in “Matrix Revolutions” in 2003. He learned a very important lesson about believing in your abilities and taking a risk. He got his start in the business doubling for Keanu on many occasions, and even directing him in film later in 2014 as his career evolved and branched out.
He was friends with Brandon Lee
Fans of the cult movie “The Crow” were shocked and saddened when the lead actor died from an accidental shooting on the set in 1993. The film was just days from completion. With only a few remaining scenes left to be shot, Chad was inserted as Lee’s double and special effects gave him the face of the departed actor. Chad was an instructor, and Lee attended Inosanto Academy. The two became friends outside of the film set. It was a difficult time for Stahelski, but he stayed the course and in honor of his friend, helped in the completion of the film that would go on to be a smashing success at the Box Office.
Chad Stehelski’s talents seem to have no end
As if it isn’t enough to be a talented director, Chad’s profession as stuntman has called for some complicated and dangerous activities. He’s no amateur and he definitely knows what he’s doing. Stehelski is a certified scuba diver, he’s fully trained in precision driving and motorcycles are include in this. He’s also trained in delivering high falls, doing wire work, tumbling, the trampoline, mini tramp, acrobatic reactions, fire burns, ratchets, rigging, air rams, weapons, martial arts and martial arts choreography. These are all highly specialized skills that he possesses and it appears that there is little that he can’t do when it comes to stunt work.
Chads directing career has taken off in grand style
The announcement has recently been made that Stahelski is set to direct “John Wick: Chapter 3,” which is set for 2019. It looks like he’s going to be kept busy again this year. In 2017, he directed the a film that was adapted from the comic book “Kill or Be Killed,” and in 2016, he signed on to work on “Triple Threat,” as well as later in the year, committing to a reboot of the “Highlander” franchise which will result in a trilogy series of films. In addition, “Sandman Slim” is another project he’s been involved with in the horror genre.
Stahelski surrounds himself with talent to keep his edge
There is little doubt that Chad is a guy who lives life on the edge. It takes a special kind of guy to put it all on the line in dangerous movie stunts, but there is another side of him that emerges as a thoughtful and creative artist when he directs a film. He’s well-balanced and has come a long way since he showed doubtfulness about his abilities in the early 1990s. He shared his philosophy about what it takes for him to stay sharp. He surrounds himself with the best talent in the business. It takes a toll on his ego, but it’s also the thing that keeps him sharp. He prefers to be around people who are more accomplished in some aspects of their lives, than he, because it raises the bar for him to stretch a little further. At the rate that Chad Stahelski is rising in his own professionalism, it’s going to get harder to find people who fit into this category.