Keanu Reeves is an actor, producer, director, and musician who began his career in the entertainment industry in 1984. He was at the height of his fame during the 1990s and remains popular to this day. Due to the success of his films, he has become financially successful and it is estimated that he has a personal net worth of $350 million. Here is how he became so rich.
Reeves was born in Beirut, Lebanon, on September 2, 1964. He had an unsettled childhood as his father served time in prison for dealing heroin and his parents then divorced. His mother had various relationships and traveled the world as a costume designer. This meant that Reeves lived with numerous stepfathers in locations including New York City, Sydney, and Toronto.
It was in the latter city where the family finally settled when Reeves’ mother married a director called Paul Aaron. Reeves began working for his stepfather as a production assistant at the age of 15. However, this was not the first time he had been involved in the entertainment industry as he had begun acting at the age of nine, predominantly on stage.
Although Reeves’ mother and Paul Aaron divorced, he chose to move to Los Angeles at the age of 17 to live with his former stepfather and pursue a career in acting. His television debut was in a single episode oh ‘Hangin’ In’. He then appeared in several commercials throughout the early 1980s. At this time, he also worked as a correspondent and appeared in stage productions.
In 1986, Reeves made his debut film appearance in ‘Youngblood’. He went on to have a few minor roles in films before landing his first major film role in ‘River’s Edge’. He spent the next few years appearing in teen movies, including ‘Permanent Record’, ‘Bill & Ted’s Excellent Adventure’, and ‘Bill & Ted’s Bogus Journey’. In 1991, he had one of the lead roles in ‘Parenthood’ and it was this film that broadened his audience and attracted attention.
The 1990s were the high point of Keanu Reeves’ career as it was during this decade that he was in his biggest films and enjoyed the most popularity. During the first half of this decade, Reeves starred in movies including ‘My Own Private Idaho’, Bram Stoker’s Dracula’, ‘Speed’ and ‘A Walk in the Clouds’.
He continued to land a lot of roles in the second half of the decade. Some of the movies in which he appeared at that time included ‘Johnny Mnemonic’, ‘Chain Reaction’, and ‘Feeling Minnesota’. This was when his success began to decline as each of these films was panned by the critics. Reeves had also declined the offer to appear in ‘Speed 2: Cruise Control’ despite the paycheck offer of $11 million. Instead, he chose to tour with the Manitoba Theater Center in Hamlet, playing the title role. This was a decision that many criticized.
Realizing that his career had hit a low point, Reeves took steps to turn his career around. He took a $1million pay cut when he appeared in ‘The Devil’s Advocate’ so that the producers could cast Al Pacino. Similarly, to guarantee the casting of Gene Hackman in ‘The Replacements’, Keanu Reeves took a pay cut of 90 percent. These two films helped him to claw his way back to popularity with moviegoers.
In 1999, Keanu Reeves starred in ‘The Matrix’ and then reprised his role in its sequels. Other films in which he has since starred include ‘The Gift’, ‘Something’s Gotta Give’, ‘Sweet November’, ‘The Watcher’, and ‘Constantine’. Each of these has contributed to his personal net worth of $350 million. However, his films are not the only way that Reeves has made this fortune.
The actor has also worked as a producer and co-founded the production company ‘Company Films’. This company contributed to the production of the film ‘Henry’s Crime’, in which Reeves also stars. He also co-founded Arch Motorcycle Company, as he is an avid motorcyclist. This company designs and builds custom motorcycles.
Keanu Reeves continues to work as an actor and most recently starred alongside Winona Rider in the 2018 movie ‘Destination Wedding’. He has some future projects in the pipeline, including ‘Bill and Ted Face the Music’ and ‘The Modern Romance’. The latter of which is a maritime romance film. Keanu Reeves currently resides in Hollywood Hills, California.