It is safe to say that unless you’ve been living under a rock for the last 20+ years, you’ve heard about Keanu Reeves, a name which originates from Hawaiian decent meaning “cool breeze over the mountains.” Judging from his character and poise the name Keanu is a perfect match for his personality.
Throughout his long career, Keanu has often disappeared from Hollywood for almost a year at a time now and then. He is very generous with his cash, providing large gifts to various charities and the production workers on his movies.
He rejected $12 million to do Speed 2 since he was already committed to his role in an on-stage Shakespeare production in the small Canadian theater. As a Buddhist, Reeves opposes war according to his beliefs and has, in fact, rejected a long list of movies since the roles seemed extremely violent for him to do.
In one interview, he was asked about his drug use and the drugs he has tried in his life, he was hesitant to name which ones he’s experimented with, but he did mention that drugs have given him some amazing experiences.
There are a broad variety of different components to an action star. Different shades of Reeves, if you will. Which Reeves do you love the most – director, actor, philanthropist, musician? With more than thirty years of acting under his belt, the majority of us know him for his unique cinema attributes, but here are some interesting facts that you may or may not know about one of the premier action stars in Hollywood!
1. Keanu Gets Very Generous With The Production Workers On His Movies
After the great success of the first ‘Matrix’ film that Reeves reportedly made some $35 million, including his salary and back-end deal, the superstar made a decidedly generous turn when negotiating for the two sequels.
Since Reeves felt that the special effects costume designers and the entire team on The Matrix movies played a crucial role towards the success of his film, he also felt that they really deserved a piece of the profits. He handed over a huge portion of his back-end profit-sharing deal, reportedly giving away over $75 million to crew.
Although the exact amount which was divided among his crew has long been a source of debate, it’s been agreed that a significant portion of his profit sharing was handed over. Also, he gifted the stunt team with the Harley Davidson motorcycles.
2. Keanu Got His Start In Commercials
Reeves has been featured in different films for decades now, but before Bill and Ted, before Speed, and even before Youngblood, he was a just young actor trying to make it big. He dropped out of high school in order to pursue his dream of being a great actor after an injury terminated his hockey playing career. And, like several young actors, Reeves got his start in different commercials, starring in this early 80’s advertisement for Coca-Cola.
3. Lawful Keanu
It is hard to believe someone would try to sue one of the Hollywood’s most lovable and generous actors, but in 2008 Keanu was sued in LA by paparazzo Alison Silva. Alison tried to sue him for $711,974, claiming Keanu hit and even injured him with his car, but was unsuccessful in his pursuit.
Alison’s lawsuit took about 2 years to make it to trial, during that time Silva repeatedly kept on attacking Keanu for payment for his allegations. Eventually, during the trial, his suit was turned down.
4. Philanthropist Keanu
Like several other celebrities, Reeves has numerous charities under his belt. He’s organized a cancer charity that he chose not to attach his name to (his sister Kim had Leukemia for more than ten years).
He has been an ardent PETA supporter for many years and is also a strong supporter in the Stand Up To Cancer and SickKids Foundation, just to mention a few. He’s also known to have offered $75 million of his Matrix earnings to the film’s makeup and special effects crew. When asked about it, he’s been 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.”
5. Sad Keanu
After meeting at the party in ’98, it was not long until Reeves fell in love with ex-girlfriend Jennifer Syme, a production assistant, and actress. Within one year they were expecting a baby, but in December 1999, Jennifer gave birth to the couple’s stillborn daughter eight months into the pregnancy. Tragedy struck again for the actor just 19 months later when Jennifer was killed in a car accident heading back to a home party hosted by a rocker Marilyn Manson. At the time, Keanu was scheduled to start shooting the Matrix sequel.
6. Obsessed Keanu
It is difficult sometimes being a sexy action star. On September 12, 2014, Reeves found a lady in his library who told him she came to meet him. Even in such a creepy situation, he remained the calm, cool Reeves we all know and adored and kindly spoke to her – while calling 911.
Only three days later a second lady, totally obsessed with the actor too, broke into his home. She then undressed, took a bath and chose to go swimming naked in his swimming pool. When he saw her, he notified the police who arrived to arrest the stalker. It may be time to invest in a more advanced security system, Reeves!