Keanu Reeves

Keanu Reeves, actor, producer (born at Beirut, Lebanon 2 Sept 1964). Keanu Reeves moved to Toronto at the age of 5 with his mother and stayed there until 1984, attending various drama schools under the influence of his stepfather, the Broadway and Hollywood producer Paul Aaron.

Reeves's theatrical career began in earnest in a THEATRE PASSE MURAILLE production of Brad FRASER's Wolfboy in 1983. He appeared in several marginal films, then moved to Los Angeles in 1984. Within a couple of years his career had taken off. His Hollywood debut occurred in the gloomy and intense teen-picture River's Edge (1986). Soon he was appearing in populist hits like Bill and Ted's Excellent Adventure (1989) and in more arty or offbeat films such as Dangerous Liaisons (1988), My Own Private Idaho (1991), Even Cowgirls Get the Blues (1993) and Much Ado About Nothing (1993). He acted in Francis Coppola's lavish Bram Stoker's Dracula (1992), in the huge hit Speed (1994), and in the mainstream A-budget film The Devil's Advocate (1997), attaining a high degree of stardom and enormous fan interest worldwide.

He has played many character types and genres, from psycho bad guys in thrillers like The Watcher (2000) to the heroes of sappy romances like Sweet November (2001). His most successful role was in the cyberpunk cult smash The Matrix (1999); capturing the world's attention, the film spawned 2 sequels, an animated spin-off program of shorts, and a puerile video game. The role remains a fan favourite and has become an archetypical performance of sorts within Hollywood.

Reeves appeared in the sci-fi / fantasy films Constantine (2005), A Scanner Darkly (2006) and the remake of The Day the Earth Stood Still (2008), and played roles in smaller, slightly more brazen films such as the romantic weepie The Lake House (2006), and the hard-boiled Los Angeles police drama Street Kings (2008).

Keanu Reeves's most striking quality as a movie star is his sensational beauty and masculine appeal. Critics have questioned his talent, attributing his success to his physical presence rather than his ability to bring depth and nuance to a performance. His choice of movie material has fed this critical ambivalence, as he has oscillated between straightforward commercial projects and more ambitious material.

Reeves has returned to Shakespeare several times, including a stage performance in the title role of Hamlet at the MANITOBA THEATRE CENTRE in 1995. In 2010 he co-produced a documentary about the dawn of the digital age in Hollywood and the choice that filmmakers within that system had, at that time, to either continue working with 35mm film or to embrace digital technology. The film, Side by Side, saw a limited theatrical release in 2012, but no film prints were struck.