These days, Keanu Reeves may be known as the most badass assassin in all of fiction, but the John Wick actor is in real life widely regarded as one of the nicest actors in Hollywood. Recently, while talking to Graham Norton on his show, actress Octavia Spencer recalled a time two and a half decades ago when Reeves came to her rescue.
"It was about 25 years ago, The Matrix had just come out. I was on my way to pick up a script to read for an audition. So I wasn't really wearing any underwear, I was wearing sweats and my favorite college football t-shirt. It was worn, it was see-through, no underwear. And my car hadn't been washed because I always parked underneath the trees, and there was bird crap all over the back of it. And it broke down in this posh area of Beverly Hills, and there was a cafe and all of these people are sitting out there and the cars were honking. Nobody would help me."
While he had a number of hits before, The Matrix was the film that truly broke Reeves into the mainstream, and established him as a genuine leading man. At such a time, many actors can understandably become full of themselves. But according to Octavia Spencer, Reeves at the height of his fame not only went out of his way to help her but also got the indifferent passers-by to help through sheer charisma.
"All of a sudden, this guy comes up with his sunglasses and motorcycle helmet, and I knew immediately it was Keanu Reeves. And I, of course, was freaking out. He, you know, 'You need some help?' And I'm like, 'Sure.' So I thought he was going to get into the car, I got behind the car to push. He said, 'No, I'm going to push you out of the street, you get in.' So he pushed me out of the street, and then of course, when people saw it was Keanu Reeves helping me, everybody came down to help."
Clearly, Reeves' generous nature stayed with him all through the making of The Matrix and its sequels. During the making of The Matrix Reloaded, the actor was so impressed by the work ethic of the 12 stuntmen who filmed the "Neo vs 100 Agent Smiths" scene with him that he gifted each stuntman a Harley Davidson.
Later on, the fact that Reeves got along so well with the franchise's cast and crew is what prompted Chad Stahelski, who was a stuntman for the Matrix movies, to cast the actor in his small-budget action movie John Wick, and the rest is history.
Through dint of his constantly self-less behavior, Keanu Reeves has amassed a global fan following and the kind of career resurgence that most actors can only dream of. Hopefully, the upcoming The Matrix 4 will put the actor back in the spotlight in the same manner as the original The Matrix did.