FOXNews (US), June 5, 2003

Keanu Is Keeping His Money, Thanks Very Much

Matrix star Keanu Reeves is a generous guy, but reports of his wild generosity are not true.

Yesterday the British tabloids, in a fit of creative mania, decided that Reeves had given $82 million to the crew who worked on The Matrix films.

"I have enough money to last for centuries," Reeves proclaimed, and it was reprinted everywhere.

Where do they get this stuff from?

Indeed, one of the people cited as receiving a check for $2.8 million was Kym Barrett, the costume designer for The Matrix series. She's the one who made Neo's famous long trench coat. So I called Barrett up and asked her how she felt being a millionaire.

"A what?" she asked. Sadly, she has not gotten a dime in the mail from Reeves.

"I mean, he's very nice. He plays with my kids. We love working with him, but no, no checks," she laughed.

Was there anyone who'd gotten this money as described in breathless reports?

"No one I know of," she said.

Barrett, by the way, wouldn't mind if Warner Bros., or Joel Silver wanted to merchandise those long coats. She's ready to become a fashion designer.

As for Keanu doling out the big bucks, here's the real story: two years ago he put some of his upfront money back into the production budget to ensure the creative staff -- costumes, special effects etc -- could continue working on the trilogy. This was back when the first Matrix had not yet hit pay dirt. Since then, believe me, the movies have been such a success that everyone's gotten what they needed.

But Keanu has not written any personal checks to anyone. Sorry.

Article Focus:

Matrix, The


Matrix, The


GuestIs this true? (2017-05-09 07:21:09)
 I really hope that this article is true. This rumor bothered me a lot. In this uncertain world and business who would give that kind of money to people who already have a job I mean giving reasonable gift is one thing but dishing out that much money is pure insanity and lack of judgment and I want to believe that Keanu is smarter than this.

I heard about the motorcycle gift from his own mouth on an interview but that is fine.

Anakin McFly
(2017-05-09 08:07:10)

It's true, but I'm curious why you would consider it a lack of judgement on Keanu's part; this would have been a fraction of his entire fortune. He has hundreds of millions in the bank, which is far more than enough to live an extremely comfortable life several times over, and sharing some of that with others would be commendable, not insane.

The actual amount he gave (to the special effects and costume departments, not the people) was also US $38 million, not 82. Numbers got mixed up when the story crossed countries and currencies.

Guest (2017-05-09 08:49:07)
 Thanks Anakin for clarifying this. I've seen different amount and the one that appeared most was I think 80% of his take which is insane and because of this I wanted the above story to be true. If it's $38m then it is better but what a generorous man. I don't know how much he got as there are different theories out there but 38m would probably mean ca 10% and that is extremely generous. I Just read another Brazilian interview in this website where he said he gave the money to create fund. He is a thoughtful man.

Million thanks Anakin for this wonderful website. I have read so many great articles from the old times which I had no idea about. Reading his interviews is like reading a novel lol.

Anakin McFly
(2017-05-09 10:42:03)


Apparently it was his upfront salary that he put back into the movies, so he still got all of his cut from the box office - which was a lot, since this was The Matrix. He's done similar things with other films, like taking a 90% pay cut on The Replacements so they could afford to hire Gene Hackman. He's rich enough that money isn't really a concern, which lets him do the films he wants rather than what will pay the bills, and he's a regular supporter of a few charities, though not very publicized.

Guest (2017-05-10 02:54:07)
 Honestly that makes him one of the few most generous people on the planet. Hollywood is now filled with comic books and only very very few actors are paid large amount. It is not the same. I am so glad God chose him for the matrix and happy the role and the money went to him rather than other But money can run out and I hope he is more careful now.

He seems to have a genuine love and respect for acting and some actors. I hope he gets to play nice roles. Am I the only one who worries that him not attending this big HW events like oscars may have negative impact on his career? I think networking within your profession is important He is not on social media either which is fine. But in order to prove to big studios that he is still a box office draw, this type of things which might look silly for him might be important in the silly Hollywood land:). John Wick is a good thing which he seems to love due to the creative process and seems to reconnect him with fans.

Anakin McFly
(2017-05-10 06:59:52)

He's already established his career and cemented his place in Hollywood history; networking is important for people who are just starting out in the business, because that's how other people know they exist, whereas people already know who Keanu is. He's already made a name for himself, and that frees him from doing the 'silly' things. :)

I don't think this is a matter of being careful - I have nowhere near even one million dollars and am still doing fine, financially. Keanu could give away 95% of his wealth and still lead a much more luxurious lifestyle than most people, and given how he spent most of his life living out of a single suitcase, he seems the sort of person who would get by okay even if he was straddling the poverty line. While extremely rich people can still end up in terrible financial straits due to poor judgement - usually by splurging their money on things they can't afford, entering bad investments and so on, I wouldn't put charity in that same category at all, because the motivation and thus the risks are different.

Guest (2017-05-10 07:34:13)'re probably right. He said in one interview he didn't go nuts yet, no jet. So yes he will probably do fine regardless. I support the charity part too - it is just the cuts he does here and there whether true or not. But I think he knows what he is doing.
Guest (2017-05-10 19:19:01)
 I noticed it's actors involved in high profile movies that attend or present at the Oscars.
There is limited room at the Dolby Theatre, can't fit all that want to attend.
But he can still go to the after parties and be photographed if he wants publicity.
Guest (2017-05-11 04:43:13)
 I don't believe that at all. Too far from the truth.

I saw actors who haven't done anything for the past 30 yrs attending. Some of them you don't even know who they are, let alone high profile. From what I've heard he avoids this kind of things. He said it himself he doesn't want to walk the red carpet. His past history proves it as well. He is one of the few iconic actors in HW so there is plenty of room for him if he wanted.

Who are with high profile movies now- you mean all the comic book actors behind the costume of comic figures. Nah...when they take that costume off, no body even bother to watch their other movies. Stars like Keanu are rare. It is not easy to sell original stories but he did it over and over again. Plus usually you present if you have a movie coming out as they use it as an ad so that is a different story.

Guest (2017-05-11 22:16:12)
 High profile movies = the movies nominated for the specific Oscar Academy Awards year. These actors are usually at the awards show, either presenting or in the audience. The others in attendance that you mention haven't done anything for over 30 years are either invited or there to show they are still alive. :D
Guest (2017-05-11 22:27:08)
 Nothing wrong with walking the red carpet, but it does put a lot of pressure on looks and "who are you wearing". :D
I don't really care for award shows but would attend once out of curiosity... :) ...maybe
Guest (2017-05-11 22:57:51)
 It will be interesting to see if he attends the Oscars/Academy Awards if he or one of his movies get nominated in the future. I have a feeling he will be there.
(2017-05-12 07:44:48)
 who's freaking business is it at all how Keanu does or doesn't spend his money?

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