Keanu Reeves: ‘I would’ve broken Kubrick’

Keanu Reeves is not the greatest film actor in the world, nor is he anywhere close to the worst, but he has some claim to be the most enigmatic, as well as the most warmly adored. That much became indisputably clear last May when the “Sad Keanu” phenomenon erupted online. Reeves had long been cherished, and occasionally mocked, for his work in pictures as diverse as the Matrix trilogy and My Own Private Idaho, Speed and the Bill & Ted films. But it took an unexceptional paparazzi snap of the actor sitting on a park bench, staring disconsolately past the half-eaten sandwich in his hand, to ignite widespread concerns for his welfare and to act as the catalyst for the sort of celebrity deification that only usually comes with death.


Take our discussion of his latest film, Henry’s Crime, a charming confection about a blue-collar nobody who serves time for a bank heist in which he played no part, only to decide upon his release that he may as well rob the joint anyway. Reeves describes the chasm between the picture’s modest shoot (it’s the first fruit of Company Films, his own production outfit) and the extravagances typical of blockbusters such as the Matrix movies: “Those films afforded me the chance to do, like, 40 takes,” he explains, “and you don’t oftentimes get to do that. On Henry’s Crime, it was, like, ‘Take three? Wow!'” What a shame, I remark, that he never got to work with Stanley Kubrick, the king of the neverending takes. And with that, Reeves is off and running.

“I would’ve been his wet dream!” he enthuses. “After take 400, Kubrick would’ve been, [adopts grizzled Brooklyn accent] ‘All right, cut!’ and I’d be, like, ‘Stanley, can I do one more?’ ‘Whaaat?’ ‘Look, I know I’m just drinking this glass of water, but I think I can find another side to this. Let’s just do one more, OK?’ ‘Arrrgh, OK, Reeves.’ You know what? I would’ve broken Kubrick. ‘Please, sir, can I have some more?’ ‘Take 600. All you gotta do is walk across the road.’ ‘Come on, Stanley, one more!'”


Given that he is now four years shy of 50, it would probably be best to make that third Bill & Ted film sooner rather than later. Reeves tell me that there are writers working on it as we speak, and that he’d love to play that good-natured dimwit Ted one last time. “We’ll see what they come up with,” he says.

-via The Guardian