(September 2, 1964 - living) Canada
Actor and rock artist
Keanu Charles Reeves was born at Beirut, Lebanon. His unusual name comes from his Hawaiian-Chinese father, and means "a cool breeze over the mountains".
Keanu's mother Patricia met father Samuel Nowlin Reeves, a geologist, while she was working as a showgirl at a local club. The marriage didn't last long. Patricia and Samuel got divorced.
Patricia moved with Keanu to New York City, where she married Paul Aaron, a Broadway and Hollywood director.
The "Aarons family" then moved to the more family-friendly Toronto (hippie section), and took up Canadian citizenship, which Keanu still retains, but Patricia and Paul Aaron split up a year later.
Keanu was a high school dropout: "He wasn't quite, well... with it", a former teacher of Keanu has said. "He always left his books at home or forgot his homework. But he'd just smile and go back home to get them." After bouncing around to several different high schools, Keanu dropped out to pursue acting full-time at the age of seventeen.
Before becoming an actor he was a skate sharpener, a pasta chef (shop in Toronto) and a tree cutter. He also danced in a Coca Cola advert.
Keanu made with one of his first acting jobs a sensation in Toronto with his role in the homoerotic play Wolfboy (1984); he also acted in several Canadian teleplays. When Rob Lowe came to town to film Youngblood (1986), Keanu could combine his first loves: hockey and drama.
Keanu caught the attention of directors and critics for his performance as a misunderstood teenager in River's Edge (1987). Many more feature films and television appearances would follow. Keanu 's acting would become big business in the USA.
Keanu's love for music also started at an early age, however, he didn't begin playing the bass until he was 23. Self taught, he would spend hours a day picking away at the four-stringed bass. Meeting Robert Mailhouse in 1991 lead to his first band experience jamming in his garage, and eventually playing some live shows, then on to "Dogstar".
His main interests are with his motorbikes, of which he has encountered many accidents with, the worse case including the removal of his spleen! He enjoys playing in his band, "Dogstar". He turned down the part of the sequel to Speed to tour with his band.
He is currently filming the Matrix sequels - The Matrix: Reloaded and The Matrix Revolutions. They are being filmed in Australia and are likely to be released in the summer of 2003.
Is Keanu Gay?
One of Keanu's first stage performances was at a young age in the homoerotic play Wolfboy. This made the rumor start that he might be gay. His status as a cult figure in the gay community grew strong after movies like River's Edge (1987) and My Own Private Idaho (1991).
A fat rumor in 1995 was his marriage with David Geffen, the entertainment guru. To the gay monthly Out magazine Keanu claimed not to know Geffen personally. In this issue on the front cover: "Keanu Reeves Sets the Record... uh, Straight". It has also been reported Geffen did have a personal assistant that looked similar to Keanu.
Keanu is still not very clear about his sexual orientation. And why should he? Back in 1990 he declared to Interview magazine that he is straight. But after a short pause joked about it by saying: "But ya never know".
"I don't know why anyone cares, and I don't know if it matters or not. I just, uh, I don't - it's, you know, the whole aspect of coming out. I mean, there is a whole - people, you know, who are gay have decided that it can be - that whole thing about calling people out - and you have to share that, because there needs to be an equality and a lack of prejudice, and you need to have a voice, so, I mean, it's important, but I'm not involved in those dynamics and I have no point of view on it."
- Keanu Reeves to USA Today
"There's nothing wrong with being gay, so to deny it is to make a judgement."
- Keanu Reeves to Vanity Fair