13 most excellent financial facts about Keanu Reeves

Emilee Geist

13 most excellent financial facts about Keanu Reeves
13 most excellent financial facts about Keanu Reeves

The world fell in love with the humble, kind, Canadian superstar Keanu Reeves with the rise of the sci-fi masterpiece, The Matrix. Among his other cult classics (Bill & Ted’s Excellent Adventure, Point Break, Speed).

The love never died, with his John Wick franchise receiving acclaim — and his show-stealing performance in Toy Story 4. Now comes Bill & Ted Face the Music, reteaming Reeves with co-star Alex Winter as the totally awesome duo last seen on screen in the early 1990s. The movie is making its debut this weekend on streaming services.

Despite being in the spotlight, Keanu Reeves is notoriously private. We’ve dug up the most interesting financial facts about everyone’s favorite Hollywood nice guy.

1. He’s rolling in wealth

<cite>Featureflash Photo Agency / Shutterstock</cite> <br />Keanu Reeves is a bankable name, and he’s made millions from his films over the years.<br />” src=”” data-src=”https://s.yimg.com/ny/api/res/1.2/LNoMIICduUbNcz6WeB5Dew–/YXBwaWQ9aGlnaGxhbmRlcjt3PTk2MA–/https://media.zenfs.com/en/moneywise_327/36cd34cf89290a413627d3593af1b9a7″/><noscript><img alt=Featureflash Photo Agency / Shutterstock
Keanu Reeves is a bankable name, and he’s made millions from his films over the years.
” src=”https://s.yimg.com/ny/api/res/1.2/LNoMIICduUbNcz6WeB5Dew–/YXBwaWQ9aGlnaGxhbmRlcjt3PTk2MA–/https://media.zenfs.com/en/moneywise_327/36cd34cf89290a413627d3593af1b9a7″ class=”caas-img”/>
Featureflash Photo Agency / Shutterstock
Keanu Reeves is a bankable name, and he’s made millions from his films over the years.

Take the red pill, Neo. It’ll make you rich.

Keanu Reeves’ net worth sits at $360 million, according to multiple sources.

You can bet he listens to financial advisers — but getting good financial advice is smart even if you have far less than a nine-figure net worth. Today’s advisers are more affordable than you might think, and are even available online now.

2. His first payday was pitiful

<cite>Keanu Russian Club / YouTube</cite> <br />Heaver in Youngblood.<br />” src=”” data-src=”https://s.yimg.com/ny/api/res/1.2/NdsmznExd959jh76ru33eg–/YXBwaWQ9aGlnaGxhbmRlcjt3PTk2MA–/https://media.zenfs.com/en/moneywise_327/4d4b75708f9c9dcd72c5abf036269d1c”/><noscript><img alt=Keanu Russian Club / YouTube
Heaver in Youngblood.
” src=”https://s.yimg.com/ny/api/res/1.2/NdsmznExd959jh76ru33eg–/YXBwaWQ9aGlnaGxhbmRlcjt3PTk2MA–/https://media.zenfs.com/en/moneywise_327/4d4b75708f9c9dcd72c5abf036269d1c” class=”caas-img”/>
Keanu Russian Club / YouTube
Heaver in Youngblood.

As far as first forays into film go, Reeves could’ve done worse than Youngblood, a well-meaning hockey movie starring Rob Lowe and Patrick Swayze.

Playing the team’s goalie, Heaver, was a perfect match for Reeves — dubbed “The Wall” during his stellar high school hockey career as a goalie.

But the pay for the role could have been better. He reportedly made around $3,000. You could earn far more by getting yourself a simple side gig.

It’s a stark contrast to the $30 million he collected for the final two Matrix movies — 10,000 times more than his debut, and not including his box office cut.

3. He’s apparently Santa Claus

<cite>Netflix / YouTube</cite> <br />One of the best cameos in Reeves’ career.<br />” src=”” data-src=”https://s.yimg.com/ny/api/res/1.2/0ekH82zME1WIixRj.AH9Vg–/YXBwaWQ9aGlnaGxhbmRlcjt3PTk2MA–/https://media.zenfs.com/en/moneywise_327/32c7b46dfd7db0b1e18116e3346f146a”/><noscript><img alt=Netflix / YouTube
One of the best cameos in Reeves’ career.
” src=”https://s.yimg.com/ny/api/res/1.2/0ekH82zME1WIixRj.AH9Vg–/YXBwaWQ9aGlnaGxhbmRlcjt3PTk2MA–/https://media.zenfs.com/en/moneywise_327/32c7b46dfd7db0b1e18116e3346f146a” class=”caas-img”/>
Netflix / YouTube
One of the best cameos in Reeves’ career.

Jolly Saint Keanu learned that a set builder on The Matrix was going through some family trouble. What did he do?

Reeves personally gave him a Christmas bonus of $20,000 to help him out, according to a personal account from Reddit user “kahi.”

“He also was one of the only people on the set that genuinely wanted to know peoples names, would say hello and mean it,” kahi says.

4. He has willingly taken pay cuts

<cite>Amazon</cite> <br />Devil’s Advocate would be very different without Keanu’s deference.<br />” src=”” data-src=”https://s.yimg.com/ny/api/res/1.2/61HTiN_NmruA7FPrsnejyA–/YXBwaWQ9aGlnaGxhbmRlcjt3PTk2MA–/https://media.zenfs.com/en/moneywise_327/7c2d22ef55e13347af19fcc3fd575647″/><noscript><img alt=Amazon
Devil’s Advocate would be very different without Keanu’s deference.
” src=”https://s.yimg.com/ny/api/res/1.2/61HTiN_NmruA7FPrsnejyA–/YXBwaWQ9aGlnaGxhbmRlcjt3PTk2MA–/https://media.zenfs.com/en/moneywise_327/7c2d22ef55e13347af19fcc3fd575647″ class=”caas-img”/>
Amazon
Devil’s Advocate would be very different without Keanu’s deference.

Time after time, Reeves has proved himself dedicated to the craft. For Devil’s Advocate, he deferred $2 million of his salary so they could afford to hook Al Pacino to the project.

Pulling a similar move, Reeves cut the majority of his salary so that The Replacements could fit screen legend Gene Hackman into the budget.

“Money is the last thing I think about. I could live on what I’ve already made for the next few centuries,” he told the Chicago Tribune.

5. ‘You get a Harley! You get a Harley!’

<cite>Bloomberg</cite>” src=”” data-src=”https://s.yimg.com/ny/api/res/1.2/uscZ47sGmfDziIOwU3FMwA–/YXBwaWQ9aGlnaGxhbmRlcjt3PTk2MA–/https://media.zenfs.com/en/moneywise_327/9104895546fd314d3a0b35bcf29cfc49″/><noscript><img alt=Bloomberg” src=”https://s.yimg.com/ny/api/res/1.2/uscZ47sGmfDziIOwU3FMwA–/YXBwaWQ9aGlnaGxhbmRlcjt3PTk2MA–/https://media.zenfs.com/en/moneywise_327/9104895546fd314d3a0b35bcf29cfc49″ class=”caas-img”/>
Bloomberg

Though reports of Reeves donating millions of his own salary to give crew members bonuses are grossly exaggerated, he did do something amazing for the stunt crew of 12 he worked with on The Matrix Reloaded set.

He bought them all brand new Harley Davidson motorcycles, which range in price from $7,000 to more than $40,000 today — depending on the model.

“We were all in this thing, and we were training together beforehand,” Reeves told the Seattle Post-Intelligencer. “I just wanted … to give a bigger thank-you to all these guys who helped me make this.”

6. A fan once sued him for $3 million

<cite>Warner Bros. Pictures</cite> <br />Actual footage of Reeves versus the lawsuit.<br />” src=”” data-src=”https://s.yimg.com/ny/api/res/1.2/WqTeVfyNQyJeKjXC6MyLvg–/YXBwaWQ9aGlnaGxhbmRlcjt3PTk2MA–/https://media.zenfs.com/en/moneywise_327/88a4956f5038ac26699215820c305ea4″/><noscript><img alt=Warner Bros. Pictures
Actual footage of Reeves versus the lawsuit.
” src=”https://s.yimg.com/ny/api/res/1.2/WqTeVfyNQyJeKjXC6MyLvg–/YXBwaWQ9aGlnaGxhbmRlcjt3PTk2MA–/https://media.zenfs.com/en/moneywise_327/88a4956f5038ac26699215820c305ea4″ class=”caas-img”/>
Warner Bros. Pictures
Actual footage of Reeves versus the lawsuit.

It sounds like a horrible episode of Maury, but this actually happened, according to the Toronto Star.

Ten years ago, a woman claimed Reeves hypnotized her, impersonated her husband, and fathered all four of her children.

She pushed for $3 million per month in spousal support and $150,000 per month in retroactive child support for her fully adult kids.

Reeves agreed to take a paternity test in 2010, and for once he wasn’t The One. It came back negative, and the judge threw the case out of court.

7. He turned down $11 million

<cite>Jimmy Kimmel Live / YouTube</cite> <br />Imagine saying ‘no thanks,’ to $11 million.<br />” src=”” data-src=”https://s.yimg.com/ny/api/res/1.2/mYSgaS9vWBPIJP8zZT7Enw–/YXBwaWQ9aGlnaGxhbmRlcjt3PTk2MA–/https://media.zenfs.com/en/moneywise_327/a3eb157d2dc9836e3b739465ffa9375e”/><noscript><img alt=Jimmy Kimmel Live / YouTube
Imagine saying ‘no thanks,’ to $11 million.
” src=”https://s.yimg.com/ny/api/res/1.2/mYSgaS9vWBPIJP8zZT7Enw–/YXBwaWQ9aGlnaGxhbmRlcjt3PTk2MA–/https://media.zenfs.com/en/moneywise_327/a3eb157d2dc9836e3b739465ffa9375e” class=”caas-img”/>
Jimmy Kimmel Live / YouTube
Imagine saying ‘no thanks,’ to $11 million.

It was back in 1995, probably the largest payday any studio offered Reeves before his $15 million salary for The Matrix Reloaded: $11 million to take part in Speed 2, the sequel to his classic action flick Speed.

And he turned it down. To star as Hamlet in the Manitoba Theatre Company’s production of Shakespeare’s revenge classic, in Winnipeg, Canada.

Reeves explained the decision to Jimmy Kimmel in an interview:

“It was just a situation in life where I got the script and I read the script and I was like ‘agggghhh.’ It was about a cruise ship…and I was thinking, ‘A bus, a cruise ship… Speed, bus, but then a cruise ship is even slower than a bus and I was like, ‘I love you guys but I just can’t do it.”

Reeves also described it to the Toronto Star as similar work to 1996’s Chain Reaction, which he had just filmed — and he was disillusioned with the prospect of tackling another action movie.

8. He’s been homeless (sort of)

<cite>holyfruits / Reddit</cite> <br />The “Sad Keanu” meme spread in 2010, when paparazzi caught Reeves sullenly eating a sandwich.<br />” src=”” data-src=”https://s.yimg.com/ny/api/res/1.2/JnORNKY4bF8MxS9dwp1IfQ–/YXBwaWQ9aGlnaGxhbmRlcjt3PTk2MA–/https://media.zenfs.com/en/moneywise_327/dd03f43343548d463cc54ebca381d3e1″/><noscript><img alt=holyfruits / Reddit
The “Sad Keanu” meme spread in 2010, when paparazzi caught Reeves sullenly eating a sandwich.
” src=”https://s.yimg.com/ny/api/res/1.2/JnORNKY4bF8MxS9dwp1IfQ–/YXBwaWQ9aGlnaGxhbmRlcjt3PTk2MA–/https://media.zenfs.com/en/moneywise_327/dd03f43343548d463cc54ebca381d3e1″ class=”caas-img”/>
holyfruits / Reddit
The “Sad Keanu” meme spread in 2010, when paparazzi caught Reeves sullenly eating a sandwich.

Reeves holds notoriety, and probably some sort of record, for not owning a home with his significant means until 2003 — close to 18 years after starting his career.

He was essentially homeless and made trailers and hotel rooms his home — he was famously a long-time resident of the legendary Chateau Marmont Hotel in Los Angeles.

In 2003, Reeves (finally) purchased a Hollywood mansion for $5.95 million and dubbed it his “chateau modern.”

Thinking it’s time to have a “chateau” of your own? This is the perfect time to buy a home, with mortgage rates lower than ever.

9. He’s one of the highest-paid actors ever

<cite>Warner Bros. Pictures</cite>” src=”” data-src=”https://s.yimg.com/ny/api/res/1.2/jJJN5k6e3EaRxK9IZw302A–/YXBwaWQ9aGlnaGxhbmRlcjt3PTk2MA–/https://media.zenfs.com/en/moneywise_327/9769461a4885f73a79ad3b36d7e6651e”/><noscript><img alt=Warner Bros. Pictures” src=”https://s.yimg.com/ny/api/res/1.2/jJJN5k6e3EaRxK9IZw302A–/YXBwaWQ9aGlnaGxhbmRlcjt3PTk2MA–/https://media.zenfs.com/en/moneywise_327/9769461a4885f73a79ad3b36d7e6651e” class=”caas-img”/>
Warner Bros. Pictures

Very few beat Reeves when you look at his gross pay for The Matrix Trilogy.

It’s hard to say whether he IS the One, just because salaries aren’t always made public, but he’s probably pretty dang close to being the highest-paid actor of all time.

Because of his lucrative Matrix deals, salary plus a cut of the box office — 10% for The Matrix, and 15% for The Matrix Reloaded and The Matrix Revolutions — he walked away with over $256 million over the course of the trilogy.

Studios typically take out lots of insurance to protect their investments in top-dollar actors. In a similar way, you need disability insurance to protect your income in case you ever become too sick or injured to work. A policy costs as little as $9 a month.

10. Call him the billion-dollar man

<cite>Lionsgate</cite> <br />John Wick: Chapter 3 has grossed over $316 million worldwide.<br />” src=”” data-src=”https://s.yimg.com/ny/api/res/1.2/ijLhs51srvPS.18fRkSU1Q–/YXBwaWQ9aGlnaGxhbmRlcjt3PTk2MA–/https://media.zenfs.com/en/moneywise_327/587acd23db766b4eb946dfdd5e38b9c1″/><noscript><img alt=Lionsgate
John Wick: Chapter 3 has grossed over $316 million worldwide.
” src=”https://s.yimg.com/ny/api/res/1.2/ijLhs51srvPS.18fRkSU1Q–/YXBwaWQ9aGlnaGxhbmRlcjt3PTk2MA–/https://media.zenfs.com/en/moneywise_327/587acd23db766b4eb946dfdd5e38b9c1″ class=”caas-img”/>
Lionsgate
John Wick: Chapter 3 has grossed over $316 million worldwide.

Though there’s a theory that Sony put him in “movie jail” when he turned down Speed 2 in 1995, Reeves has somehow still managed to gross billions of dollars at the box office over the years.

How much approximately? Something like $5.85 billion worldwide, not adjusted for ticket-price inflation.

Cue air guitar.

11. He loves motorcycles

<cite>GQ / YouTube</cite> <br />His eyes light up when he talks about them.<br />” src=”” data-src=”https://s.yimg.com/ny/api/res/1.2/OWb1RwN.Xr9brugyaYpABA–/YXBwaWQ9aGlnaGxhbmRlcjt3PTk2MA–/https://media.zenfs.com/en/moneywise_327/a5cf54299669e21199e1111f633c6f17″/><noscript><img alt=GQ / YouTube
His eyes light up when he talks about them.
” src=”https://s.yimg.com/ny/api/res/1.2/OWb1RwN.Xr9brugyaYpABA–/YXBwaWQ9aGlnaGxhbmRlcjt3PTk2MA–/https://media.zenfs.com/en/moneywise_327/a5cf54299669e21199e1111f633c6f17″ class=”caas-img”/>
GQ / YouTube
His eyes light up when he talks about them.

Makes sense, since he’s been in so many action movies and does his own stunts — but people fail to realize just how much Reeves loves motorcycles.

“Where I grew up in Toronto, every summer motorcycle gangs would come into a place called Yorkville,” Reeves says in a GQ interview. “Those bikes, those people, those pirates, I think touched that 10-year-old kid in a way.”

His collection is easily worth hundreds of thousands, and he also co-founded a renowned motorcycle company: Arch Motorcycle, based in LA.

Reeves has invested a lot of money in bikes. You can invest in stocks — with as little as $5. Investing apps make it easy, and you won’t have to pay any fees.

12. He invested millions back into The Matrix trilogy

<cite>Warner Bros. Pictures</cite> <br />Reeves has The Matrix’s back.<br />” src=”” data-src=”https://s.yimg.com/ny/api/res/1.2/s_HaQu8XqXdqu1wV7Y4kkQ–/YXBwaWQ9aGlnaGxhbmRlcjt3PTk2MA–/https://media.zenfs.com/en/moneywise_327/9fc7c6f379ceafac3d1bebf4071087b5″/><noscript><img alt=Warner Bros. Pictures
Reeves has The Matrix’s back.
” src=”https://s.yimg.com/ny/api/res/1.2/s_HaQu8XqXdqu1wV7Y4kkQ–/YXBwaWQ9aGlnaGxhbmRlcjt3PTk2MA–/https://media.zenfs.com/en/moneywise_327/9fc7c6f379ceafac3d1bebf4071087b5″ class=”caas-img”/>
Warner Bros. Pictures
Reeves has The Matrix’s back.

You’ll see urban legends of how Reeves “donated over $100 million dollars” in bonuses for the special effects and design crew working on the set of the Matrix films.

By all accounts, he’s an amazing guy, but he’s not THAT amazing. This seems to be a commonly misreported story.

Following the trail of supposed million-dollar handouts led us to an account in The Wall Street Journal that clarifies he cut money out of his contract to better fund the special effects, production and design departments.

13. He had part-time jobs like the rest of us

<cite>Orion Pictures</cite> <br />‘Noah’s wife?’<br />” src=”” data-src=”https://s.yimg.com/ny/api/res/1.2/SI9AUDWBH4N1GUjlcNUzvw–/YXBwaWQ9aGlnaGxhbmRlcjt3PTk2MA–/https://media.zenfs.com/en/moneywise_327/b01b1426b09899ac0bd51d6220410c7c”/><noscript><img alt=Orion Pictures
‘Noah’s wife?’
” src=”https://s.yimg.com/ny/api/res/1.2/SI9AUDWBH4N1GUjlcNUzvw–/YXBwaWQ9aGlnaGxhbmRlcjt3PTk2MA–/https://media.zenfs.com/en/moneywise_327/b01b1426b09899ac0bd51d6220410c7c” class=”caas-img”/>
Orion Pictures
‘Noah’s wife?’

When Reeves was a teenager, saving up for his move to Hollywood, he worked two part-time jobs.

He sharpened ice skates at a local arena in Toronto, plus worked at a gourmet Italian grocery store.

Having dropped out of high school at 17, he moved to Los Angeles three years later and got his first big break in River’s Edge (1986).

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