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|“||I'm not afraid of John Wick!||„|
|~ Iosef Tarasov before John Wick starts hunting him.|
Iosef Tarasov is the secondary antagonist of 2014 action film John Wick. He is the son of Viggo Tarasov of the Tarasov crime family. Iosef is arrogant, entitled and foolish. He is the one who set the events of the movie in motion by killing John's beloved dog Daisy.
He is portrayed by Alfie Allen, who also played Theon Greyjoy in Game of Thrones.
John meets Iosef on a random encounter on a gas station a few days after the death of Johns wife. Iosef expresses his interest in Johns car and asks him how much he wants for it, but John tells him that the car is not for sale. At night, Iosef and a few of his men break into Johns house, kill his dog Daisy, beat up John and steal his car. John is furious because Daisy was the last present of his deceased wife and vows to kill Iosef.
Iosef tries to get his car modified by Aurelio. When he finds out that the car belonged to John, Aurelio refuses to take it and strikes Iosef. A few hours later, Aurelio gets a phone call from Viggo Tarasov, the leader of the Russian crime syndicate. Viggo wants to know why Aurelio has hit his son. When Aurelio tells him what Iosef did, Viggo ends the call and is clearly shocked. He orders Iosef to visit him and after hitting him, explains what danger his son has put himself in.
In order protect his son, Viggo put a bounty on Wick's head which caused some of the Continental's assassins to hunt down Wick, amongst them Marcus and Ms. Perkins.
John manages to locate Iosef inside a club. He enters and begins taking out Iosef's henchmen but is not able to kill Iosef himself because he is fighting Iosef's head of security, Kirill. In the end, John Wick manages to capture Viggo Tarasov and questions him about his son's whereabouts. Viggo reluctantly tells John where to find his son.
After finding out where Iosef is hidden, John travels to the safehouse and takes out a friend of Iosef and all of the guards. Two bodyguards attempt to flee with Iosef by car, but the two are shot and the cars are blown up. Iosef tries to run but gets shot in the stomach. Injured, he sinks to the floor while John approaches. Iosef ties to save himself by convincing John that it was "just a fuck'n dog" but gets shot in the head by John.
- Allen found it "invigorating" to play a Russian villain and shoot outside of Game of Thrones's Belfast set, and on accepting the role of Iosef, he was attracted by the idea of speaking with a different accent, i.e. the New York accent, as well as citing both Stahelski and Leitch's involvement as an incentive for drawing him to the piece. While in New York, Allen visited Russian public baths to develop and hone the Russian accent which he developed for the film. And speaking in terms of inspiriations drawn on for Iosef, Allen stated, "I guess, I found the relationship between [my character] and his father, and there was a backstory about the mother that I found quite interesting […] And he also added that the challenges he faces involved learning the Russian language to which he remarked, "learning the Russian was pretty tough". On the character of Iosef, Kolstad described him as, "a dinner-theater version of his father. Iosef is a rich kid who imagines himself a tough guy; but without his father’s muscle, he’s a punk. In his mind, he has the scars of battle. But the reality is he's one spoiled kid." Kolstad too spoke of Allen's admiration for his to-be colleagues, which charmed the writer, stating as follows, "When we had the first cast-and-crew dinner, I was talking with Alfie and suddenly he just froze. He just said, 'Oh my god! It's Willem Dafoe.' He's a great actor, but he's also a fan like everybody else." Allen spoke of his fellow actor Reeves with both respect and praise, stating, "He's amazing. He's such a great guy. He's a very giving, generous actor as well and just kind of relaxes you on set. If you're nervous, he just kind of chills you out. You know I didn't know that he was a director before I started this. He's made a documentary about encouraging people to make films. I think that's fantastic." Asked on what he hopes the audience take away from the film, Allen said, "It's kind of a crazy love story in there somewhere. It’s not like any other love story I've seen. I think the theme […], is that, all men can change. And who is the bad guy in it, really?".