When Keanu Reeves’ John Wick first arrived on the big screen back in 2014 (before it became a huge franchise), audiences expected to see a fun action movie about a widowed hit man being brought back into the criminal underworld.
But most were horrified when the adorable puppy given to Wick by his late wife was killed within the first 20 minutes of the movie.
It’s a brutal moment, but Daisy the Beagle’s death instantly gets the viewer on Wick’s side as he embarks on his quest for revenge against the mobster who killed her.
After all, who wouldn’t want to get bloody revenge for the murder of their fur child?
Thankfully, it’s all just fiction and Daisy the Beagle wasn’t actually harmed in the making of “John Wick.” Phew!
However, Daisy is actually a boy, who was originally called Andy, and he was owned by Kim Krafsky, a dog trainer for Animal Actors International.
Krafsky later gave an update about Andy when speaking to LADbible back in 2021, reassuring fans that he lives with a friend of hers, and he’s still alive and kicking.
“A friend of mine took him to live in their home, and his name was changed to Wick by their kids,” Krafsky said.
And speaking to USA Today, Krafsky said she picked Wick for his “rock star” quality – also telling the outlet that he beat 12 other puppies to the role.
She said: “He melts you with his eyes. He also has the right temperament. He and Keanu hit it off right away. But, then again, who wouldn’t love this puppy?”
The trainer also told the New York Post that it was a difficult scene to film, saying: “The whole time you’re thinking, ‘Oh, my God, how sad.'”
Krafsky added that Omer Barnea, the actor who had to “kill” Wick/Daisy, felt incredibly guilty during filming. She said: “He felt horrible. Every time the director yelled cut, he just picked up the dog and cuddled him.”
Although the franchise has become hugely popular (arguably because of Daisy’s death), production studio Thunder Road was rightfully worried about how audiences would respond to the brutal moment in the film.
Co-director David Leitch told the Austin Chronicle in 2014 that the executives were concerned, explaining: “It’s risky. You kill the dog, you alienate the audience, and the movie’s done.”
Leitch added that he and co-director Chad Stahelski deliberately went against the company’s notes, saying: “Your lead actor shouldn’t have a beard and don’t kill the dog. We go, ‘Let’s give the lead actor a beard, and let’s kill the dog.'”
Thankfully, “John Wick: Chapter 4” doesn’t kill another dog to emotionally blackmail the audience, although Stahelski recently told Insider that he wasn’t sure he would get to make two films, let alone four.