Derek Kolstad

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to navigation Jump to search
Derek Kolstad
Born1974 (age 45–46)
Film producer
Years active1987 - present
StyleNeo-noir action films

Derek Kolstad (born 1974) is an American screenwriter and film producer who became widely known as one of the creators of the John Wick franchise, which began in 2014 with the film of the same name. He continued to write for the sequels of the franchise and is mainly known as a screenwriter of action films.


Originally from Madison, Wisconsin, Kolstad attended Edgewood High School of the Sacred Heart and later studied business administration at Taylor University in Indiana. He moved to California at age 24 to pursue screenwriting. He says he started writing films when he was a teenager, but he struggled to find success in Hollywood at first.[1]


The first script he sold was called Acolyte, which was purchased by Voltage Pictures in June 2012. After that, he got some writing and re-writing work, including work on One in the Chamber, starring Dolph Lundgren and Cuba Gooding Jr. He then wrote another Dolph Lundgren film titled The Package.

By the end of 2012, Kolstad sold his other script, titled Scorn, to Thunder Road Pictures, and in April 2013, Keanu Reeves agreed to star in the film. It was Reeves who suggested the name of the film be changed to John Wick after the title character,[2] who was named after Kolstad's maternal grandfather[citation needed]. The film went on to become a major box office and critical success. It has been followed by two sequels, John Wick: Chapter 2 in 2017 and John Wick: Chapter 3 – Parabellum in 2019.[3] In addition to the films, Kolstad also wrote the video game John Wick: Chronicles and was involved with the creation of the John Wick comic book series.[4]

In 2017, it was reported that Kolstad will write a live-action television adaptation of the Hitman franchise as well as an action-thriller titled The Steward.[5][6][7]

In 2019, it was reported that Kolstad will write and produce a live-action film adaptation of the Just Cause franchise.[8]

In 2020, Netflix announced that Kolstad will be an executive producer and writer on the upcoming "Splinter Cell" anime series.[9]

Personal life[edit]

Kolstad lives in Pasadena, California with his wife Sonja and twin toddlers.



  1. ^ Doug Moe, Doug Moe: John Wick, hit man,, 6 January 2014.
  2. ^ Giroux, Jack (10 February 2017). "Interview: 'John Wick: Chapter 2' Screenwriter Derek Kolstad on Expanding the World and Paying Homage to 'Open Range'". /Film. Archived from the original on 2018-06-15.
  3. ^ Gary Collinson, An interview with Derek Kolstad, screenwriter of John Wick, Flickering Myth, 24 October 2014.
  4. ^ Boris Kyt, 'John Wick 3' Brings Back Writer Derek Kolstad (Exclusive) Archived 2017-06-01 at WebCite, The Hollywood Reporter, 1 June 2017.
  5. ^ Dave McNary, ‘John Wick’ Writer Derek Kolstad Sets up ‘The Steward’ With Cristal Pictures, Variety, 19 June 2017.
  6. ^ James White, Hitman Targets A TV Relaunch With John Wick's Derek Kolstad, Empire, 13 November 2017.
  7. ^ Borys Kit, 'John Wick 3' Brings Back Writer Derek Kolstad, Hollywood Reporter, 1 June 2017.
  8. ^ "'John Wick' Writer Derek Kolstad Tackling 'Just Cause' Video Game Adaptation". The Hollywood Reporter. Retrieved 2019-05-21.
  9. ^ "'Splinter Cell' Anime Series From 'John Wick' Writer Derek Kolstad Set at Netflix (EXCLUSIVE)". Variety. Retrieved July 31, 2020.

External links[edit]