Keanu Reeves On ‘John Wick 3,’ The Return Of Bill and Ted, And His Love For Will Smith’s ‘Wild Wild West’

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I don’t know if Keanu Reeves hates doing interviews – and I suspect he very well might – but it’s pretty obvious they take a lot out of him. True story: a few years ago, at Sundance, I was waiting to talk to Eli Roth when, out of the blue, Keanu Reeves, who had just finished doing a round of interviews, pulled up to a seat at my table, put his head down and went to sleep. Keanu Reeves has the everliving shit beat out of him making these John Wick movies (John Wick: Chapter 3 – Parabellum comes out next week) yet it’s press tour interviews that you can see physically draining his energy. And here I was, late on a Sunday afternoon, Reeves’ last interview after a three day press event.

But the thing is, unlike other people in his position, he can still be playful and fun, even when you can tell he’s physically and mentally drained. When I mentioned his role in Ron Howard’s Parenthood, of all things, his eyes lit up – an obvious sign Parenthood hadn’t been mentioned this weekend, so there was something new to talk about. Which then leads basically to a Vaudeville routine in which both of us try to remember his character’s name in Parenthood before I finally cave and just look it up on my phone.

The thing I have noticed about Keanu Reeves is if you ask him if he’s seen something, the answer is most likely no. Did he see that video of Will Smith breaking down why he passed on The Matrix? No, but Reeves had some details to add (including his, no joke, love for Wild Wild West). Had he seen the viral video of him sharing a ride with other stranded passengers after a canceled flight? Again, no, but he also seems annoyed that was put on the internet in the first place. (The previous time I interviewed Reeves I asked him if he had ever seen Speed 2: Cruise Control. He responded, deadpan and hilariously, “I haven’t yet.”)

And when the next installment of Bill and Ted is brought up, he seems genuinely excited. But, first, I couldn’t resist quoting one of my personal favorite Reeves lines, from Man of Tai Chi.

I still often say, “You owe me a life.”

You owe me a life!

Donaka Mark.

You owe me a life!

I feel like in this movie that line could be used if it wasn’t used already.

Yeah, a little Man of Tai Chi, Donaka Mark. Yeah, I don’t know if they have similarities…

I don’t think the characters do, but the theme.

But there is something to it of reality and another hyper-reality, another world.

I’m stretching. Any excuse to say that, I’m going to say it.

You owe me a life!

I spoke to you for the first John Wick and the concern then was “Are people going to like this?” Things have changed.