On Keanu Changing for Each Character
Keanu is such an intense actor that he became Kevin and, well, Kevin isn't always the most considerate of people," laughs the leading lady, "and maybe, for some of those involved with the shoot, the actor somehow got confused with his character.
– Charlize Theron, "Route 666" by Kathleen Paul – Galaxie (Mal), January 17 – 31, 1998
(On The Gift): "It's a part I don't get to play that often," [Keanu] says. "It was a great experience." In preparation for life as a wife beater, he spent three weeks in Georgia learning how to be a redneck. "You know," he says, "Donnie motherfucking Barksdale." He got a truck, and he ended up borrowing a white-fleeced Levi jacket from a guy in a bar who told him he didn't look nearly redneck enough in his jeans and shirt. "I wanted to find out the thinking," Reeves explains. "I met this one guy, and he ended up by the end of the night beating up his girlfriend. In front of the bar.
– "The Quiet Man" by Chris Heath – Rolling Stone (US), August 31, 2000
(Keanu on Constantine): "The journey I took was to understand him through his gestures, behaviour, and the way he moves. To be him, I lowered my voice register a little bit and changed my speech patterns and rhythms.
– "An ordinary Joe" by Faridul Anwar Farinordin – New Straits Times (Malaysia), February 9, 2005
Reeves' Constantine director, Francis Lawrence, was baffled that Reeves could now carry two typecasts, Bill and Ted and The Matrix, when those roles were so diametrically opposed. "I think a lot of of actors carry the baggage of past roles with them, but because he was so strong in a sense in Bill and Ted's, he just carries that with him," Lawrence said. "And he became that guy. He became Neo. They are nothing alike. You carry that with you and I think that's part of it, but I have no idea why that happens. The reaction to him is so sort of polarized it's just amazing.
Shia LaBeouf on Keanu in Constantine: "I had preconceived notions when I walked in the door," LaBeouf said. "He's just the whoa guy or the guy in Speed. But the truth is he has one of the most elaborate resumes and has worked with the best actors in this business. When I first met him, the reason my whole notion changed was that I have never seen anyone prepare like Keanu in my life. Jon Voight is my mentor and doesn't prepare like Keanu. Keanu really, really prepared. We sat down at rehearsals and there were four or five journals and you're thinking they are the writer's journals and then Keanu sits there and opens them all up and each one is labeled, Cancer Book, Latin, Philosophy, Spirituality. He researches everything and he is so prepared. Also very hard on himself and a really intense actor he's so un-jaded for a person who is in so many films he still works on films like it's his first movie.
– both articles from "Pros and Constantine" by Fred Topel – Entertainment Today (US), February 11 – 17, 2005
The depth of his passion, curiosity and desire to find where a character is living is far superior to any other actor I've worked with.
– Lewis Baumander, "Curtain Call by Joe Fisher – Toronto Sun (Ca) – December 4, 1994
He gets deep in character, like deep, deep, deep. Like, you might get scared sometimes, like 'Keanu!'
– Rachel Weisz, Telling Tales – Extra TV (US0, February 1, 2005