Keanu to give away £50million
Star's gift to films unsung heroes
by Martin Evans
MATRIX star Keanu Reeves is giving away £50million to the behind-the-scenes heroes of the hit film.
Each of the 29 special effects and costume experts who made the latest instalment of the movie trilogy such a worldwide success will net around £1.75million.
Reeves, 38, will still pocket £20million out of his total expected earnings from the Matrix of £70million.
The huge payday is thanks to a deal that guaranteed him 15 per cent of the film's final profits.
The star said he had already made enough cash.
He said: "Money is the last thing I think about. I could live on what I've already made for the next few centuries."
At a recent press conference during the Cannes Film Festival, Reeves humbly dismissed his role in the film's popularity, insisting that much of it was down the special effects and the costumes.
His offer to help out the staff of those departments will mean that many of the skilled workers will receive huge bonuses.
But Hollywood's best, special effects experts can already expect to earn million-dollar salaries from their in-demand skills.
The Matrix: Reloaded, which opened in the UK at the weekend, has already taken around £182million worldwide despite a lukewarm reception from critics.
The third instalment, The Matrix: Revolutions, opens in November and is expected to eclipse the first two.
Reeves, who does not own a home and lives in hotels, has always been generous with his money.
While filming the sequels back-to-back in Australia, he surprised the 12 stuntmen by giving them Harley Davidson motorcycles worth £6,000 each.
One co-star in The Matrix: Reloaded, Jada Pinkett Smith, wife of actor Will Smith, said: "His generosity is just overwhelming."
The actor, whose younger sister Kim has battled leukaemia for 10 years, has also invested millions in cancer research.
Despite his generosity, Reeves is often portrayed as lonely figure unable to find love.
A baby he was expecting with his girlfriend Jennifer Symes died in the womb aged eight months. And Jennifer herself was killed in a car accident in April 2001.
Reeves has also been romantically linked with British-born former Word presenter Amanda de Cadanet.