Keanu Reeves Said No to Angry Studio Executives After He Was Pressured to Wear a Wig to Hide His “Severe Haircut”

A lot of actors in the industry have had to transform themselves in the past in order to play a role to perfection in their projects. Whether be it a transformation in their physique or something that affects their appearance like hair, the A-listers have had to transform themselves in order to portray a certain character.
Keanu Reeves

Keanu Reeves
Keanu Reeves also had to transform himself once for his portrayal of Officer Jack Traven in the action-thriller movie, Speed which required the actor to get a ‘one cut‘ but allegedly the actor screwed up his haircut so bad, he almost had to wear a wig for the role.

Keanu Reeves had to transform his physique while preparing for Speed

Keanu Reeves is pretty well known for his action roles in the industry but the actor did not always have this look of maturity on his face when he was a young actor back in the 90s. Jan de Bont decided to cast the John Wick star for the role of Officer Jack Traven in his directorial debut movie, Speed. However, Reeves did not look like the character when he was cast for the movie and also had to work on his physique.

Jan de Bont talked about the situation while talking to the author, Brian J. Robb who was working on the book, Keanu Reeves: An Excellent Adventure. He said,
“The thing with Keanu is that he looks very boyish and I wanted him to be like a young adult. I didn’t want him to be like a kid  and he loves to be like a kid.”
Keanu Reeves as Officer Jack TravenKeanu Reeves as Officer Jack Traven


As if his physique was not a problem enough for Bont, Reeves also messed up his haircut that had to further delay the filming by 2 weeks.

The filming for Speed was delayed because the John Wick actor messed up his haircut

To play the role of Officer Jack Traven in Speed, Keanu Reeves was supposed to get a haircut called, ‘one cut‘ but the actor allegedly messed up his haircut and the studio executives got really mad at the actor. Reeves said,

“I had what they call a one cut, and then I took the ‘one’ off on the clippers! Some people thought it was too extreme because they could see my scalp.”

Jan De Bont further talked about the incident and said,
“They saw him walking on the lot and they called me right away. They said, ‘Who told him to cut his hair? We have to get him a wig – now!’ I said, ‘No way are we going to get him a wig.’ They called his manager, they called his agent, they said, ‘We’re going to have to postpone this movie now,’ and I said, ‘No, we have two more weeks, and in two weeks his hair will grow this much. It’s great, it’s what I want.’ They were totally upset.”
Keanu Reeves and Sandra Bullock in SpeedKeanu Reeves and Sandra Bullock in Speed
Despite everything, Keanu Reeves was absolutely incredible in the movie Speed and the movie went on to become a massive commercial as it grossed more than almost $350 million against a production budget of $30-37 million.

Speed is currently streaming on Hulu.

Source: Keanu Reeves: An Excellent Adventure by Brian J. Rob

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