Keanu Reeves, who arguably became a movie a moviestar due to his impression on Neo, now thanks Will Smith for turning down the role of the chosen one in the Matrix franchise.
As we are getting closer to the release of The Matrix Ressurections this December, the actors are giving more interviews. Keanu Reeves, who became famous after his hit with the franchise, in a recent interview to Esquire, thanked Will Smith for turning down the role of Neo in The Matrix,in which Reeves ended up starring, which is today considered one of the greatest science-fiction movies ever made.
The Canadian actor was a known entity before playing Neo, through movies like Bill & Ted’s Excellent Adventure, Point Break and Speed, but his role in The Matrix has arguably become the starter of his famous career. Knowingly, Reeves wasn’t the studio’s first choice to play the chosen one in the franchise, as the Wachowskis first offered the part to young star Will Smith.
Keanu Reeves considers the film to have been life-changing, both professionally and personally. He even talks positively about the experience of shooting it. He said: “Well, it changed my life. And, it was such a wonderful creative experience, and so to play Neo in The Matrix trilogy and now in the fourth”, adding: it impacted his life, personally and creatively. So he thanks very much.
Previously Smith said he doesn’t regret the decision to turn down The Matrix, as he believes Reeves was a better fit for the role than he would’ve been. The serious tone of the film certainly would’ve been different with his casting, given that Smith was coming off an action-comedy performance in Men in Black, which is much more of a comedy, than Matrix.