'Devil's Advocate' brings Keanu Reeves to Florida
by Matt Soergel
Keanu Reeves is becoming a regular visitor to the First Coast.
In October, the star of Speed and Bill and Ted's Excellent Adventure spent a day with prosecutors at the Duval County Courthouse, watching how they work.
Last month, he played bass with his rock band, Dogstar, at Shades in Orange Park.
And yesterday, Reeves was shooting several scenes inside an Avondale interior design business for his new movie, Devil's Advocate.
The script calls for Reeves' character to be a Gainesville native who worked as a prosecutor in Duval County before returning to his hometown as a defense attorney.
Director Taylor Hackford (An Officer and a Gentleman and Dolores Claiborne) said Reeves plays an ambitious young lawyer offered a prestigious job in New York by Al Pacino's character, who happens to be the devil. Devil's Advocate, a Warner Bros. movie, is scheduled for theaters Oct. 17.
Most of the movie was shot in New York. Filming ended in March, but some of the stars and crew were called to Florida this week to shoot additional scenes.
Pacino didn't make the trip, but Reeves and co-star Charlize Theron (That Thing You Do! and 2 Days in the Valley) did. Neither was available for interviews yesterday.
Shooting continues at a small church in Gainesville today and in Micanopy tomorrow. Hackford and crew came to Jacksonville last week looking for interior settings that could pass as an upscale New York business and home.
Guided by the Jacksonville film office, they found it all in one place on Herschel Street at Mrs. Howard's, an interior design business run by Jim and Phoebe Howard.
Jim Howard redecorated the store to suit the filmmaker's needs. He also stepped in as an extra - portraying an interior designer.
Jacksonville also is doubling for New York in another feature film. Work on I-95, the story of some young New Yorkers traveling on a bus to Miami for a talent show, continued downtown yesterday.