Feb 03, 2015 03:43 PM EST
Keanu Reeves is a talented actor and has starred in the movies Bill and Ted's Excellent Adventure, Bill and Ted's Bogus Journey, Speed and The Matrix and its sequels.
His full name is Keanu Charles Reeves and he was born on 2 September 1964 in Beirut, Lebanon.
His first name means "cool breeze over the mountains" in Hawaiian.
Reeves is the son of English-born Patricia Taylor, a showgirl, and American-born Samuel Nowlin Reeves, a geologist. Keanu's father was born in Hawaii, of British, Portuguese, Native Hawaiian, and Chinese ancestry.
Unfortunately their marriage did not last and his mother and younger sister, Kim Reeves, to Australia where his mom worked as a costume designer. The family then moved to New York City, then Toronto. The family moved around a lot and he lived with various stepfathers.
Reeves's father earned his GED while imprisoned in Hawaii for selling heroin at Hilo International Airport.
While living in Toronto, Reeves attended four high schools in a span of five years and even got expelled once. On the expulsion, Reeves said: "I was just a little too rambunctious and shot my mouth off once too often. I was not generally the most well-oiled machine in the school. I was just getting in their way, I guess."
Watch Top 5 Keanu Reeves Movies of All Time
3) Speed (1994)
In high school, Reeves was never into academics but took a keen interest in ice hockey (as team goalie, he earned the nickname "The Wall") and drama. He eventually dropped out of school to pursue an acting career.
As a child, living in New Jersey, Reeves once had a terrifying encounter with a ghostly suit. In an interview with British tabloid The Sun, Reeves recalled: "I remember just staring at this suit which had no body or legs in it as it came into the room before disappearing. It was a double-breasted suit in white and I looked at my nanny, who was just as shocked as me. I just couldn't get back to sleep afterwards."
As a teenager in Toronto, he worked as a manager at a pasta restaurant.
He starred in a couple of commercials and made-for-TV movies. One of his most famous ones was a commercial for Coca-Cola.
Reeves was also a correspondent for the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation youth program "Going Great".
His first serious role was in a supporting role in the Rob Lowe hockey flick Youngblood (1986), which was filmed in Canada.
Keanu Reeves then made the big move to Hollywood by driving all the way there in his 1969 Volvo. He lived with his ex-stepfather, Paul Aaron, who was a stage and television director.
There he continued to get some small roles here and there until he landed his first popular role as cool guy "Ted Logan" in Bill & Ted's Excellent Adventure (1989). The wacky time-travel movie became something of a cultural phenomenon, and audiences would forever confuse Reeves's real-life persona with that of his doofy on-screen counterpart.
He is 6' 1" (1.85 m) tall.
In 1991, Reeves began playing bass guitar for the grunge band Dogstar. The band is no longer together, however, music has remained a huge part of his life.
In 1995 Dogstar opened for Bon Jovi in Australia and in 1999 the band even played at the famed Glastonbury music festival.
Reeves also performed in the band Becky for a year in the early 2000s.
In 1994, Reeves' career reached a new high as a result of his starring role in the action film Speed opposite Sandra Bullock. His casting in the film was controversial since, except for Point Break, he was primarily known for comedies and indie dramas.
Despite his success in Speed, he often preferred his eclectic roles and turned down a huge paycheck for "Speed 2: Cruise Control" in favor of touring with his band and starring in a production of "Hamlet."
When making "The Devil's Advocate," Reeves agreed to take a big pay cut of a few million dollars (a few million dollars) so the producers could also afford to bring on Al Pacino.
He did the same thing on "The Replacements," allowing producers to bring on board Gene Hackman by demanding less cash up front for himself. He actually took a 90 percent paycut.
While some actors may jump at the chance at getting to star in a movie opposite Robert De Niro and Al Pacino, Keanu Reeves actually turned down that opportunity. Keanu was initially offered the role that eventually went to Val Kilmer in the movie 'Heat', instead opting to play Hamlet at a 789 seat theatre in Manitoba.
Tragedy struck Keanu Reeves in December 1999, Reeves's girlfriend, Jennifer Syme, gave birth to a stillborn daughter. Ava Archer Syme-Reeves was born prematurely, following an eight-month pregnancy. Eighteen months later, Syme died in an automobile accident. She was the sole passenger of the vehicle at the time of the accident.
His most famous role to date happened in 1999 - "The Matrix". The 1999 science fiction-action film was an international success that gave birth to two sequels and established Reeves as an A-list actor and action star.
Reeves was paid $10 million upfront to film the first "Matrix" and ended up earning $35 million total after the film became a huge hit.
When negotiating his profit-sharing deal for the two follow-up films, Reeves opted to hand over some of his points to the franchise's special effects and costume design teams. The total amount Reeves could have earned but chose to disburse to the crew instead comes, by some accounts, to over $75 million. He donated over $75 million to people he worked with because he thought they deserved it.
On top of that, Keanu gave each member of The Matrix's 12-strong stuntman team a Harley Davidson motorbike as a gift. Just because he's a good guy.
He reportedly gave $80 million of his $114 million earnings for his work on "The Matrix" sequels to the special effects and makeup staff.
Many actors have to smoke cigarettes on the big screen for a role, and Keanu admitted that it wasn't until he was 30 that he actually developed the bad habit in real life, thanks to his starring role in Feeling Minnesota. Asked about it during an interview with Details Magazine, he said; "I got hooked making a film.Feeling Minnesota. I didn't start smoking until I was 30. Now I'm just in prison."
Reeves is a motorcycle enthusiast and has recently started manufacturing his own bikes, Arch Motorcycle Company.
While on a "demon ride" (that means riding at night with no headlights) in Topanga Canyon, Reeves smashed into the side of a mountain. He was hospitalized for a week with broken ribs and a ruptured spleen. And if that doesn't sound painful enough for you, allegedly, one of the paramedics also dropped the stretcher as they were loading it into the ambulance.
Reeves founded a production company, Company Films, with Stephen Hamel. The company produced Henry's Crime in 2010.
Believe it or not, Keanu Reeves loves ballroom dancing.
In an interview with Details Magazine, it was revealed that Keanu has read all of Proust's Remembrance of Things Past. The work is 1,500,000 words long and about 7 volumes. It's most famously known to be about 3,000 pages long. He's been described as "one of the most voracious readers" by Scott Derrickson, director of The Day the Earth Stood Still.
4Chan, a web community, to give money for cancer research. After the Sad Keanu meme rose to fame in 2010, people had a weird conception that Keanu, for some reason, was sad, and not as full of life as he used to be. A Facebook group was created for the event and the following was decided by the admins/community: On June 15th, we plan on sending letters, emails, gifts, and any other niceties and kind words to a real bro, Keanu Reeves... In case you don't know, Keanu's sister Kim was diagnosed with leukemia many years ago. If you want to make a more significant gift, consider donating to a cancer research charity in the name of Cheer Up Keanu Day. I'm sure a letter or email informing Keanu of this action would really make his day.
There's a bizarre conspiracy that Keanu is immortal. Yes, seriously. Fans have pointed out how closely the star resembles Paul Mounet, a French actor born in 1847, and how remarkably youthful the actor looks for 50.
Keanu's set up a private cancer foundation to help a number of children's hospitals. When his sister, Kim, was diagnosed with leukaemia, he became her main caregiver and has spent $5 million on her treatment. On top of that he supports PETA, the SickKids Foundation and Stand Up To Cancer.
Keanu Reeves marked his 46th with a solitary cupcake outside a warehouse and if fans stopped by to take photos, he gladly obliged.
Keanu Reeves was awarded a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame in January of 2005.
While he might not be much of a TV watcher, there is one event that Keanu confesses to being glued to his television for, and that's the Olympics.
Of the once every 4 years sporting event, Keanu said; 'You know, I don't have a favorite TV show, but I do know that I love watching The Olympics. Whenever the Olympics are on, I just love watching them, the moments that you get these incredible athletes dedicating so much of their lives to the moments that happen in the Olympics, and it is great to be able to witness that.'
In 2011, he wrote the text for the grown-up picture "Ode to Happiness."
Reeves is neither Buddhist nor atheist, despite frequent listings to the contrary. He has previously claimed to be non-religious, while also citing an intense interest in Buddhism. In September 2013, when asked if he was a spiritual person, he replied with: "I don't know? I don't know the spiritual Richter-scale measurement! That's a weird answer, isn't it? I don't know. Do I believe in God, faith, inner faith, the self, passion, and things? Yes, of course! I'm very spiritual ... Supremely spiritual ... Bountifully spiritual ... Supremely bountiful. [Laughs.]"
Keanu Reeves has been the target of stalker invasions. On September 12, 2014, Reeves awoke when he heard someone in his home. He found a female stalker in his library. She said that she was there to meet him. While he calmly talked to her, he called 911 and alerted the police. They arrived, arrested her and took her in for psychological evaluation.
Unfortunately, it happened again. On September 15, 2014, a second female stalker made her way into his home through a gate that was left unlocked by a cleaning company. This time, the intruder undressed and took a shower in Reeves's bathroom and then proceeded to swim naked in his swimming pool. The cleaning crew became suspicious and alerted Reeves who was not at home. He then notified the police who arrived to arrest the stalker.
Keanu Reeve's net worth is $350 million.
During his initial rise to stardom, Reeves preferred to live in rental houses and hotels. He was a long-term resident of the Chateau Marmont. Around 2003, he bought his first house in the Hollywood Hills. He has since purchased an apartment in Manhattan on Central Park West.
He holds Canadian citizenship by naturalization. He grew up as a Canadian and identifies as such, and holds an American green card.
Watch Top 5 Keanu Reeves Movies of All Time
3) Speed (1994)