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How Key & Peele got Keanu Reeves to take part in Keanu

04.27.2016

Keanu Reeves Keegan-Michael Key Jordan Peele

This Friday the world will experience the most expensive cat video ever made once KEANU hits theaters. After his adorable new kitten Keanu is stolen from his home, Rell (Jordan Peele) and his friend Clarence (Keegan-Michael Key) team-up in order to seek out those responsible, but soon find themselves in over their heads dealing with violent gang members. Although many first saw KEANU as a JOHN WICK parody, the film was already in the middle of production by the time JOHN WICK was released. Due to the success of JOHN WICK the studio was keen to find out if they could get Keanu Reeves involved in KEANU.

Peter Atencio, director of KEANU, recently spoke with the LA Times about how they got Keanu Reeves onboard.

We were like, “Should we? Is this a good idea?” When “John Wick” came out, we were kind of like, “Oh, my God. This is crazy. There’s a movie that has a very similar process that stars Keanu." In a way, that almost kind of deterred us. We didn’t want to see like we we were making a “John Wick” parody. But the studio kept asking, “Can we get Keanu? Can we get Keanu?”

They eventually reached out to Keanu's management but found that their offer was "politely declined." That was that, or so it seemed; once the first KEANU trailer was released, Keanu Reeves' sister insisted that he watch it and Reeves apparently thought that it was great and got in touch with Key & Peele saying "if there's anything I can do, let's make this work." As the film was almost finished by that point, it became a matter of figuring out where they could fit Keanu Reeves, but Atencio decided that the best fit was having Reeves voice his feline namesake.

We had a scene in the movie where Peele’s character is on a drug trip, and a cat kind of leads him through his hallucinations. We wanted to expand on that anyway, so we thought he could do the voiceover for the cat in that scene. He was in Italy making “John Wick 2,” so we had him go to a recording studio in Rome. I was on Skype with him, and I spent an hour recording a bunch of dialogue. They hooked it up so that I could talk and he could hear it in his headphones. The studio [Warner Bros.] was wanting him to drop a bunch of references to his old movies. But we didn’t want to make it overt or too pointed. We don’t want him to do, like, his “Bill and Ted” voice and beat you over the head with it. And he had great ideas for lines. He was having fun with it.

KEANU will hit theaters on April 29, 2016.

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Source: The LA Times

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3:22PM on 04/28/2016

Wait, I don't get it

Why was this called Keanu and had a pet being stolen by gangsters, if it wasn't a John Wick parody? Also, spoiler alert again
Why was this called Keanu and had a pet being stolen by gangsters, if it wasn't a John Wick parody? Also, spoiler alert again
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3:08PM on 04/28/2016
JoBlo isn't the first place I heard this. I can't be mad at them for picking up a story that other outlets were already running with.
JoBlo isn't the first place I heard this. I can't be mad at them for picking up a story that other outlets were already running with.
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2:27PM on 04/28/2016
They know what they're doing when they spoil shit. They'd rather get us angry and talking, I think.
They know what they're doing when they spoil shit. They'd rather get us angry and talking, I think.
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1:44PM on 04/28/2016

Look at the bright side

Joblo is just trying to spoil its readers... though not it a way we would like to.
Joblo is just trying to spoil its readers... though not it a way we would like to.
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1:39PM on 04/28/2016

SPOILER ALERT!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

JESUS...
JESUS...
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2:55AM on 04/28/2016
For everyone complaining, the spoilers are minor. I get the sentiment, but the cameo really isn't that big of a deal. It's funny, but so minor, it doesn't even matter much.
For everyone complaining, the spoilers are minor. I get the sentiment, but the cameo really isn't that big of a deal. It's funny, but so minor, it doesn't even matter much.
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1:38PM on 04/28/2016
The point is joblo writers have a tendency to do that every once in a while despite readers specifically asking them not to.
The point is joblo writers have a tendency to do that every once in a while despite readers specifically asking them not to.
12:28AM on 04/28/2016

That was pretty uncool putting the spoiler in the headline Joblo.

I saw an article on another site with the headline "How Key and Peele pulled off this surprising cameo in their movie" and intentionally didn't click on it. It's not a huge stretch to guess who the cameo would be, but this is pretty uncool to not even give people the choice to avoid the spoiler by putting it in the headline. C'mon guys, at the time of this article, the film hasn't even been released yet. We're all movie fans here, we want each other to have the best possible experiences at the
I saw an article on another site with the headline "How Key and Peele pulled off this surprising cameo in their movie" and intentionally didn't click on it. It's not a huge stretch to guess who the cameo would be, but this is pretty uncool to not even give people the choice to avoid the spoiler by putting it in the headline. C'mon guys, at the time of this article, the film hasn't even been released yet. We're all movie fans here, we want each other to have the best possible experiences at the theater, surprises and all.
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11:04PM on 04/27/2016

Eh

The story is probably more interesting than the cameo will be. They named the cat after a movie star and got him to voice the cat. Not all the exciting. Hopefully this will be just one of many funnier scenes.
The story is probably more interesting than the cameo will be. They named the cat after a movie star and got him to voice the cat. Not all the exciting. Hopefully this will be just one of many funnier scenes.
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10:39PM on 04/27/2016
Thanks for putting that in the headline. That's the second ruined cameo this week. This is the only movie site I visit daily so I don't know if others are spoiling movies, but it doesn't mean you have to.
Thanks for putting that in the headline. That's the second ruined cameo this week. This is the only movie site I visit daily so I don't know if others are spoiling movies, but it doesn't mean you have to.
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8:56AM on 04/28/2016
In our defense, there are several big news sites that spoiled it days ago.
In our defense, there are several big news sites that spoiled it days ago.
9:51PM on 04/27/2016
so does each staff writer have a quota to spoil at least one cameo for a movie each week? Jackman, Reeves….anyone we don't know about in 'Civil War'?
so does each staff writer have a quota to spoil at least one cameo for a movie each week? Jackman, Reeves….anyone we don't know about in 'Civil War'?
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9:29PM on 04/27/2016
I never post on here but use the site frequently. Hell, never been pissed enough about something to sign in and comment. Thank you because now I won't be again. Been a loyal reader for nearly a decade and you ruined a movie I was really looking forward to seeing. This is just terrible journalism. Goodbye Joblo. Nostalgia had to run up eventually.
I never post on here but use the site frequently. Hell, never been pissed enough about something to sign in and comment. Thank you because now I won't be again. Been a loyal reader for nearly a decade and you ruined a movie I was really looking forward to seeing. This is just terrible journalism. Goodbye Joblo. Nostalgia had to run up eventually.
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10:59PM on 04/27/2016
"Ruined a movie" is a wee bit strong. It will be a two minute voice over. If they said spoiler in the title for a dumb (yet occasionally clever) comedy, would you really have not read the article? Its not like finding out darth is lukes father!
"Ruined a movie" is a wee bit strong. It will be a two minute voice over. If they said spoiler in the title for a dumb (yet occasionally clever) comedy, would you really have not read the article? Its not like finding out darth is lukes father!
9:01PM on 04/27/2016
Probably the only decent part about this film. I don't know why they would spoil this.
Probably the only decent part about this film. I don't know why they would spoil this.
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7:16PM on 04/27/2016

Well...

I was really excited to go into this movie wondering if they had a trick up their sleeve and could pull a Keanu cameo. Guess that excitement is gone now... Oh well.
I was really excited to go into this movie wondering if they had a trick up their sleeve and could pull a Keanu cameo. Guess that excitement is gone now... Oh well.
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