Why Mel Gibson in ‘The Continental’ is Perfect for the John Wick Franchise


Mel Gibson may be considered controversial in Hollywood, but latest appearance comes in the John Wick prequel series, The Continental, which charts the rise of the franchise’s Winston in the infamous hotel, was exactly what this franchise expanding series needed. Gibson was cast early on in the production, taking on the role of hotel manager Cormac, and it is not a fleeting role by any means.


This show is set in the same world as John Wick, but in a completely different time period from the main franchise. Peacock is streaming three feature-length episodes, like three acts in one long movie. So far, it appears that The Continental could be the future of the John Wick franchise. The miniseries features a younger Winston, the New York Continental’s prestigious owner. The Continental explores Winston’s backstory and his connection to the hotel. If you were wondering how Winston evolved to be the powerful persona he is in the John Wick movies, The Continental provides answers.



Mel Gibson portrays Cormac, the manager of the hotel prior to Winston taking over. Cormac acts as a mentor to Winston. Discussing his role in the series, Gibson said:


“He’s kind of like [Winston and Charon’s] mentor, or actually, mentor or tormentor, I’m not sure which. But he’s rather a nefarious character who’s like a father figure to them, and they perceive him that way when they’re young, but as they grow and begin to analyze who he really is, they realize he’s probably not the father figure he pretends to be. He’s pretty selfish in his own motives, and has used them in an ill way, and I think they’re burned by that and they want to get even.”


Director Albert Hughes, who helmed two installments of the three part series, openly praises Gibson’s professionalism and captivating presence from the set of the show. In an interview with TV Insider, Hughes said:


“There’s a separation of what I know about his career behind the camera, what I know about his career in front of the camera, and what we needed for the role. What I’ve heard for the last 40 years about how he is on set, whatever you may think or say about him, he is a pro who is very egalitarian on the set. He treats people with respect. He talks to PAs, he talks to extras.

What we all are familiar with from Lethal Weapon and all those other movies is those zingers that he has. Those aren’t in the script. That’s Mel. He starts playing with words. In Episode 3, he plays one word in particular that’s real touchy. If you read into it and you see what he’s playing with, they’re very sensitive issues. I expressed to him, you have to go there, because we’re poking fun at this type of character who is very ignorant [about] where people are from, the crazy uncle we all know.”


At one time, Gibson was one of Hollywood’s most popular action heroes. And despite a decade of tabloid-grabbing headlines and being blacklisted by numerous studios, Gibson has persevered to land regular film appearances.



Gibson, who plays The Continental’s owner and show antagonist, finds himself in the position of having a prominent role in a high-profile enterprise once again in The Continental. He is the one who hires Winson after Winston’s brother steals a coin press, and he is the one who threatens to crush the brothers if the item is not returned quickly. With all of this in mind, it seems evident that Gibson’s character will be present in all three episodes.


The Continental is now streaming on Peacock.


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John Pallister

I'm all about having fun in geek culture, but keeping my family safe!