It's that time again: a new "John Wick" film is nearly upon us. And with every new entry in this refreshing and excessively violent action franchise comes a slew of new and colorful characters played by some remarkable talent. For example, in "Chapter 2" we saw Common playing Cassian, an old rival turned bitter enemy. Then there was Halle Berry in "John Wick: Chapter 3," whose character made way for some of the most creative action sequences involving two German shepherds.

For the upcoming "John Wick: Chapter 4,Hong Kong martial arts actor Donnie Yen will bring his considerable credentials into the assassin arena. Most recently, Yen has displayed impressive action and choreography in the "Ip Man" movies and in "Rogue One: A Star Wars Story," where he played the blind warrior-monk Chirrut Îmwe. Now he'll be facing off against John Wick in the role of another blind character, a former assassin called Caine, who was seen simultaneously brandishing a gun and a sword in the trailer for "Chapter 4."

However, Donnie Yen's approach to the character differs from an older and more traditional samurai movie archetype. While the influences are there, it seems that Caine will be a marriage of familiar samurai tropes with the slick, modern assassin style that makes "John Wick characters pop. In the February 2023 issue of Total Film, which hits newsstands next Thursday, Donnie Yen described his opportunity to join the "John Wick" franchise as an invite to "the Super Bowl concert stage" of action films, but admitted that he was less enthusiastic about playing an "old, blind guy with a cane."

'I'd Rather Be The Cool Guy In The Suit'

When director Chad Stahelski first approached Yen for the role of Caine, his main reference point was Zatoichi, a blind swordsman from a series of films released in the 1960s and '70s. Zatoichi is outwardly an unassuming older man, catching opponents off guard with his skill as a swordsman despite being blind. While Yen understood Stahelski's approach to Caine, the actor had another idea entirely. Instead of going for the archetypical blind warrior, he would rather fit in with the type of assassins and fighters you'd expect from a "John Wick" film — cool suit and all. As Stahelski recalls in Total Film's "John Wick: Chapter 4" cover feature:

"Donnie was like, 'I get what you're going for. I just don't want to be the old, blind guy with a cane.' He came back and goes, 'If it's all the same to you, I'd rather be the cool guy in the suit … It's 'John Wick.' It's a suit movie. It's cool!' I was like, 'You know what, Donnie? You're absolutely right!'"

Yen's character isn't a straight-up villain either. "Caine is an old buddy of John Wick — and an ex-assassin as well," Yen detailed. "Most extraordinary is that he is a man who gave up his own sight in exchange for his daughter's safety."

John Wick's actions have apparently forced others out of retirement, as Caine looks to be back to work going against him. Whether he turns from foe to friend remains to be seen, but he definitely has the "cool guy in a suit" aesthetic Yen was hoping for.

"John Wick: Chapter 4" arrives in theaters on March 24, 2023.

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The post Donnie Yen Didn't Just Want To Be An 'Old, Blind Guy With A Cane' In John Wick: Chapter 4 appeared first on /Film.