Chad Stahelski and David Leitch—who both did stunt work on The Matrix trilogy, with Stahelski serving as Reeves' body double for Neo—originally came in to punch up the action to accommodate Reeves' talents and youthful vitality, and then volunteered to direct the whole thing.
Reeves loved their ideas—"John Wick as an urban legend, a thriller assassin movie with a realistic vibe and otherworldly setting," Stahelski recalled in the book—and that's how the tone of the intense, violent and yet also witty and intricately crafted franchise was arrived at.
Stahelski has been behind the camera for all four films, while after the original Leitch moved on to direct the likes of Dead Pool 2, Fast & Furious Presents: Hobbs & Shaw and Bullet Train.
Kolstad also wrote Chapter 2, co-wrote Chapter 3 with Shay Hatten and Chris Collins, and remains credited with creating the story and characters. However, he told Collider in 2021 that he wasn't involved with making Chapter 4.
"It wasn't my decision," Kolstad said. But, basically saying that sometimes that's just the way the ball bounces in this business, he added, "I'm never going to talk s--t about John Wick. I want this thing to survive and thrive."