About Keanu Reeves
Keanu Charles Reeves is a Canadian actor, director, producer, and musician born September 2, 1964 to Patricia , an English costume designer and performer from Essex, and Samuel Nowlin Reeves, Jr. an American man from Hawaii. His father is of Chinese, English, Native Hawaiian, and Portuguese ancestry. Reeves’ father earned his GED while imprisoned in Hawaii for selling heroin at Hilo International Airport. He abandoned his wife and family when Reeves was three years old, but Reeves knew him until he was six.
Reeves lastly met his father on the island of Kauai when he was 13. Reeves moved around the world frequently as a child, and lived with various stepfathers. After his parents divorced in 1966, his mother became a costume designer and moved the family to Sydney, and then to New York City, where she married Paul Aaron, a Broadway and Hollywood director, in 1970. The couple moved to Toronto and divorced in 1971. When Reeves was 15, he worked as a production assistant on Aaron’s films. Reeves’ mother then married Robert Miller, a rock music promoter, in 1976; the couple divorced in 1980. She subsequently married her fourth husband, a hairdresser named Jack Bond. The marriage ended in 1994. Grandparents and nannies babysat Reeves and his sisters, and Reeves grew up primarily in the Yorkville neighbourhood of Toronto, Ontario.
Reeves attended four high schools within five years, including the Etobicoke School of the Arts, from which he was expelled. Reeves argued that he was expelled because he was “just a little too rambunctious and shot his mouth off once too often… he was not generally the most well-oiled machine in the school”. Reeves excelled more in sports than in academics, as his educational development was challenged by dyslexia. He was a successful ice hockey goalie at one of his high schools (De La Salle College “Oaklands”), and earned the nickname “The Wall”. Reeves dreamed of playing hockey for Canada but an injury ended his hopes for a hockey career. After leaving De La Salle College, he attended Avondale Secondary Alternative School, which allowed him to obtain an education while working as an actor. He later dropped out and did not obtain a high school diploma.
Keanu Reeves Career
Reeves began his acting career at the age of nine, appearing in a theatre production of Damn Yankees. At 15, he played Mercutio in a stage production of Romeo and Juliet at the Leah Posluns Theatre. Reeves dropped out of high school when he was 17 and later he obtained a green card through his American stepfather and moved to Los Angeles in three years time . He lived with his ex-stepfather, Paul Aaron, who was a stage and television director. Reeves made his screen acting debut in an episode of Hangin’ In. He appeared in commercials ,including one for Coca-Cola in the early 1980s,short films including the NFB drama One Step Away and stage work such as Brad Fraser’s cult hit Wolfboy in Toronto. In 1984, he was a correspondent for the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation TV youth program Going Great.
His first studio movie appearance was Youngblood in 1986 where he played a Québécois goalie. Shortly after the movie’s release, Reeves drove to Los Angeles in his 1969 Volvo. His stepfather had convinced Erwin Stoff in advance to be Reeves’s manager and agent. Stoff has remained Reeves’s manager, and has co-produced many of his films.
After playing a few minor roles, Reeves received a sizeable role in the 1986 drama film River’s Edge, which depicted how a murder affected a group of teens. Following this film’s critical success, he spent the late 1980s appearing in a number of movies aimed at teenage audiences, including Permanent Record, and the unexpectedly successful 1989 comedy, Bill & Ted’s Excellent Adventure, along with its 1991 sequel, Bill & Ted’s Bogus Journey.
Reeves played bass guitar in the grunge band Dogstar from 1991. During the early 1990s, Reeves started to break out of his teen-film period. He appeared in high-budget action films like Point Break, for which he won MTV’s “Most Desirable Male” award in 1992. He was involved in various lower-budget independent films, including the well-received 1991 film, My Own Private Idaho with River Phoenix. In 1992, he played Jonathan Harker in the Francis Ford Coppola-directed blockbuster Bram Stoker’s Dracula.
In 1994, Reeves’s career reached a new high as a result of his starring role in the action film Speed. His casting in the film was controversial, since, except for Point Break, he was primarily known for comedies and indie dramas. He had never been the sole headliner on a film. The summer action film had a fairly large budget and was helmed by novice cinematographer-turned-director Jan de Bont.
Reeves’s career choices after Speed were eclectic: despite his successes, Reeves continued to accept supporting roles and appear in experimental films. He scored a hit with a romantic lead role in A Walk in the Clouds. He made news by refusing to take part in Speed 2: Cruise Control – despite the offered $11 million paycheck, which would have been his largest to date – in favour of touring with his band and playing the title role in a 1995 Manitoba Theatre Centre production of Hamlet in Winnipeg, Manitoba. Of his performance, Roger Lewis, the Sunday Times theatre critic, wrote, “He quite embodied the innocence, the splendid fury, the animal grace of the leaps and bounds, the emotional violence, that form the Prince of Denmark … He is one of the top three Hamlets I have seen, for a simple reason: he is Hamlet.”
However, Reeves’s choices after A Walk in the Clouds failed with critics and audiences. Big-budget films such as the sci-fi action film Johnny Mnemonic and the action-thriller Chain Reaction were critically panned and failed at the box office, while indie films like Feeling Minnesota were also critical failures. Reeves finally started to climb out of his career low after starring in the horror-drama The Devil’s Advocate alongside Al Pacino and Charlize Theron. Reeves took a paycut of $1 million for The Devil’s Advocate so that Pacino would be cast, and later took a 90 per cent paycut for the less successful The Replacements to guarantee the casting of Gene Hackman. The Devil’s Advocate did well at the box office and garnered good reviews.
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Starting from 2008, Reeves began pre-production on his directorial debut, Man of Tai Chi. The film is a multilingual narrative, partly inspired by the life of his friend, stuntman Tiger Chen. Filming occurred on mainland China and Hong Kong. During Man of Tai Chi’s five years of scripting and production, Reeves acted in several B movies with lead roles as Henry in 2010’s Henry’s Crime and John in 2012’s Generation Um…. During that time, Reeves also played Kai in the critically panned 47 Ronin.
He later returned to other artistic mediums of expression in 2011. Having played music earlier in his career, he forayed into literature by writing the text for a “grown-up picture book” entitled Ode to Happiness. His text was complemented by Alexandra Grant’s illustrations. In 2011, he produced the documentary Side by Side about the supplanting of photo-chemical film by digital camera technology; Reeves interviewed several celebrated directors including James Cameron, Martin Scorsese, and Christopher Nolan.
Reeves’s first directorial film, Man of Tai Chi, premiered in 2013 with showings at the Beijing Film Festival and Cannes Film Festival. The work was awarded in Beijing and praised by recognized director of action genre films, John Woo.
Reeves has continued acting while exploring other forms of artistry. In October 2014, he played the title role in the action thriller John Wick. The film, which stars Reeves as a retired hitman, opened to positive reviews and performed well at the box office. He reprised the role in John Wick: Chapter 2 in 2017,which was also well received.In 2016, Reeves appeared in the horror thriller The Neon Demon and the dystopian romance The Bad Batch.
Keanu Reeves Personal life
Reeves is entitled to British citizenship through his English mother. He holds Canadian citizenship by naturalization. He grew up as a Canadian and identifies as such, and holds an American green card. Reeves’ biological father was born in the United States but Reeves required a green card because he was not eligible to claim automatic citizenship by birth abroad to one United States citizen.
Keanu Reeves GirlFriend
In January 2000, Reeves’s girlfriend, Jennifer Syme, gave birth eight months into her pregnancy to Ava Archer Syme-Reeves, who was stillborn. The strain put on their relationship by their grief resulted in Reeves and Syme’s breakup weeks later. On April 2, 2001, Syme was driving alone on Los Angeles’ Cahuenga Boulevard when she sideswiped three parked cars, rolled over several times and was thrown from the car. Authorities believed she died instantly. She was reportedly being treated for depression and taking two prescription drugs, which police found in her car. Reeves, who was scheduled to begin shooting back-to-back Matrix sequels during the subsequent spring, sought “peace and time to deal with this”, according to his friend Bret Domrose, a guitarist in Reeves’s alternative rock band Dogstar.
Reeves has been described as atheist and as having interest in Buddhism. He was previously said to be non-religious and not a Buddhist, but has mentioned an interest in Buddhism when studying for certain film roles. In September 2013, when asked if he was a spiritual person, he replied with: “I don’t know? I don’t know the spiritual Richter-scale measurement! That’s a weird answer, isn’t it? I don’t know. Do I believe in God, faith, inner faith, the self, passion, and things? Yes, of course! I’m very spiritual … Supremely spiritual … Bountifully spiritual … Supremely bountiful.
In 2010, an image of Reeves became an internet meme after photos of him, seemingly depressed while sitting on a park bench eating alone, were posted to a 4chan forum. The images were soon distributed via several blogs and news sites. These pictures led to the “Keanu is Sad” or “Sad Keanu” meme being spread on internet forums. An unofficial holiday was created when a Facebook fan page declared June 15 as “Cheer-up Keanu Day”. On the first anniversary of “Cheer-up Keanu Day”, Reeves was interviewed for an article in British newspaper, The Guardian.
Keanu Reeves Philanthropy and Community Outreach
Reeves set up a cancer charity, choosing not to attach his name to the organization; he has also supported PETA, the SickKids Foundation and Stand Up To Cancer. His sister Kim has battled leukemia for more than a decade.
Reeves is quoted as saying “Money is the last thing I think about. I could live on what I have already made for the next few centuries.” It has been reported that Reeves gave approximately US$80 million of his US$114 million earnings of The Matrix sequels, The Matrix Reloaded and The Matrix Revolutions, to the special effects and makeup staff. The story has been denied by special effects staff themselves as an urban legend. The story likely had its roots in a back-end deal Reeves made with the producers of The Matrix Reloaded relinquishing his contractual right to a percentage of the earnings from the ticket sales. Reeves reportedly did so to allow producers the flexibility for an extensive special effects budget. The value of Reeves’ foregone share of the ticket profits has been estimated as US$38 million, which was added to the overall movie budget, rather than going directly to special effects.
Reeves co-founded a production company, Company Films. The company helped produce Henry’s Crime, a film in which Reeves stars. An avid motorcyclist, he co-founded Arch Motorcycle Company. The business builds and sells custom motorcycles.