KEANU REEVES DENIES THOSE TABLOID RUMORS(also published on August 16 under the title 'Keeping Up with Keanu - STAR OF 'A WALK IN THE CLOUDS' HAS HIS HANDS FULL SQUELCHING ALL THOSE PESKY RUMORS')
by Luaine Lee
LOS ANGELES - Keanu Reeves says he did not make $8 million on his latest movie, A Walk In The Clouds, and he did not marry David Geffen (as the gossips had it), and he is not free of responsibilities.
So much for all the tabloid news of the hot Canadian actor that everyone seems to be courting since he raced ahead of the pack in Speed.
You take a vaguely exotic looking guy with average talent and put him in a blockbuster movie and you suddenly have the mother lode. And things are changing for the 30-year-old actor, whose father is Hawaiian and Chinese.
He says he has often worked just for the money, but thinks he never had a really difficult time like some fellow thespians.
"When I first started out I was 19 and 20, I stayed with the family and didn't have much, but I have never been a waiter for six years and struggled in that conventional sense. There have been times when I was running out of money and had that fear, and did work that I wouldn't have done if I wasn't broke."
As the star of the forthcoming supra-romantic "A Walk In The Clouds", Reeves should know something about love. He's reluctant to talk about that.
"You know you're in love depending on how you feel," he says. "It depends on how old you are and the state of your relationship and there are different kinds of love."
Rumors about his romance with producer David Geffen are so ludicrous he doesn't bother with them. "The most ridiculous are that I'm on drugs or I'm gay or I've married David Geffen," he says.
"That's pretty dumb. My friends get a good laugh out of it. I was in Winnipeg doing 'Hamlet' when I was told that. It became so ridiculous when friends would call and say, 'Are you married?'"
Reeves' stab at 'Hamlet' wasn't very good, as all the critics were quick to point out, but he got better he thinks. "On opening night I was like a deer in truck lights. The second night was better, I got out of the way of the truck. By the end (of the run) I was driving it."
He was terrified, he says. "It was scary, crazy scary. I couldn't think of anything, I was trying to breath. I almost passed out."
Out of 24 movies, he has had his misses. One was the recent 'Johnny Mnemonic'.
"I felt that movie was compromised by TriStar. I felt they compromised the picture. Everything they did wasn't bad. I think they made the best picture they could with how they wanted to sell it as a summer blockbuster action picture. When I heard that, I said, 'We didn't film that. How are they gonna sell that?' You can't fool the audience. If they go to expect something and that's not what they're gettting it's not an enjoyable experience. So I guess 'Johnny Mnemonic' was a very unenjoyable experience."
Though he lives out of a suitcase and is launching his 25-gig tour with his band Dogstar, he insists he does have responsibilities. One of those is his sister, for whom he bought a house. And the other is his work. He wants to do good work and hopes to avoid media hyperbole about his personal life.
Sometimes there is this "powerless aspect" of being a darling of the press, he says. "It's like being punched and not being able to punch back."