Essence (US), May 16, 2019
Keanu Reeves Is A Proud Person Of Color, But Doesn't Want To Be 'A Spokesperson'
by Joi-Marie McKenzie
Considering Hollywood’s obsession with talking about diversity—albeit Tinsel Town needs a bit of help with actually executing—you’d think that a billion-dollar franchise being helmed by a person of color would get a few more headlines.
Keanu Reeves, who self-identifies as a person of color, is out with the latest violent installment of John Wick: Chapter 3 – Parabellum, hitting theaters Friday during the middle of Asian American and Pacific Islander Heritage Month. It follows Reeves’ Wick, who’s now on the run from every single assassin in the world after a $14 million bounty is placed on his head.
When ESSENCE caught up with Reeves last month, the actor admitted that he’s “not a spokesperson” for Asian actors in the Hollywood community.
Still, it doesn’t mean the Canadian, who grew up around Chinese culture thanks to his grandmother, doesn’t care about furthering representation onscreen.
“I hope that whatever opportunities I’ve had, or the work that I’m doing, in some way can entertain and can also—I don’t want to say teach—but have something of value come out of it,” he added.
John Wick director Chad Stahelski added that the film series is so successful partly because of how it’s been cast.
He added that the series is “fortunate to have the following we do, and have it resonate so well—with not just one demographic of an audience—to have it [resonate] cross-culturally…as well as internationally.”
After you watch the video above to see more from Reeves, head to theaters to see John Wick: Chapter 3 – Parabellum, also starring Halle Berry and Laurence Fishburne, in theaters Friday.