After years of rumors of a reboot or re-imagining, it looks like it’s officially time to take the red pill again. After celebrating its 20th anniversary this year, The Matrix is going back online. According to Variety, Lana Wachowski, this time without her creative partner and sibling Lilly, will direct this new continuation of the the original trilogy. Wachowski will co-write the film with Aleksander Hemon and David Mitchell. Production is scheduled for sometime in 2020.
While The Matrix 4 has thus far accrued the likes of Keanu Reeves, Carrie Anne Moss, and other familiar faces, one franchise favorite will not be joining the cast of the new film: Hugo Weaving, who famously portrayed the dastardly Agent Smith. Weaving told Time Out that scheduling conflicts made his inclusion in The Matrix 4 impossible given his commitment to another project, The Visit.
“I thought [I] could do both and it took eight weeks to work out that the dates would work,” Weaving told Time Out. “I was in touch with Lana Wachowski, but in the end she decided that the dates weren’t going to work. So we’d sorted the dates and then she sort of changed her mind. They’re pushing on ahead without me.”
One of the more memorable characters of the Matrix sequels is looking to potentially make a comeback. According to Allocine (via the Playlist) it appears that actor Lambert Wilson, who portrayed The Merovingian in both The Matrix: Reloaded and Matrix: Revolutions, is in negotiations to to come back for the upcoming fourth film. But Wilson also says it’s all up in the air, due to potential scheduling conflicts. Could Lana Wachowski merely recast the role? We should learn more when the fourth Matrix goes into production this year.
Certain directors just love to work with the same actors over and over again in different projects, and it appears Lana Wachowski is no different. Another actor from Wachowski’s previous project, the Netflix series Sense8, has announced that they are joining the Matrix reboot. German actor Max Riemelt, who played safe-cracking Wolfgang on the sci-fi show, will join his former co-star Toby Onwumere in the newest installment. No information yet on who he’s playing, or if they’re connected to any characters from the previous three films.
Riemelt shared the news via his Instagram account.
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Deadline reports Warner Bros. has set a release date for the film. It will log in to theaters May 21, 2021. That will be 17-and-a-half years after The Matrix Revolutions premiered in theaters.
Collider reports Mindhunter star Jonathan Groff is the latest big name to sign on to the fourth Matrix film. It’s unknown exactly what role he will be playing. But we know he can pull off a suit and lead an interrogation. However, he is also the voice of Kristoff in Disney’s Frozen franchise, so unless the computers now have singing agents he could play any type of character.
The cast for the fourth Matrix film continues to grow. Although the main returning characters we’ve had confirmed so far are from the first film, it now looks like someone from the original two sequels is possibly making a comeback too. According to Deadline, Jada Pinkett Smith is most likely coming back as Niobe from The Matrix Reloaded and Matrix Revolutions. The warrior from Zion is the Captain of the Logos hovercraft, and she also showed up in the Enter the Matrix videogame and The Matrix Online multiplayer game.
A new face that is looking to join the cast is former Iron Fist and Game of Thrones star Jessica Henwick. In another report coming from Deadline, Henwick will be “a female-like Neo character,” which suggests she might be a new Chosen One for the franchise. No other details were given about the character. Henwick had a very physical role in both Iron Fist and Game of Thrones, and we will go out on a limb and say her ability to do fight choreography without extensive training was probably in her benefit in landing the role.
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The fourth installment of The Matrix franchise is adding an unlikely new cast member, as Variety is reporting that Neil Patrick Harris is getting plugged into the long awaited sequel. The How I Met Your Mother and Gone Girl star will begin shooting the film sometime in the beginning of 2020. No details are known yet about his role, or if it is a new character or a different incarnation of a character from the earlier films. This will be a return to the sci-fi genre for Harris, who once starred in the cult classic Starship Troopers.
Twentieth Century Fox
Who Is Behind the Camera for Matrix 4?
In a statement, Warner Brother’s Toby Emmerich said “We could not be more excited to be re-entering The Matrix with Lana. Lana is a true visionary — a singular and original creative filmmaker — and we are thrilled that she is writing, directing and producing this new chapter in ‘The Matrix’ universe.” Lana Wachowski added “Many of the ideas Lilly and I explored 20 years ago about our reality are even more relevant now. I’m very happy to have these characters back in my life and grateful for another chance to work with my brilliant friends.”
Who Is Returning from the Original Films, And Who Are the New Cast Members?
It looks like our main heroes are coming back, with Keanu Reeves returning as Neo, and Carrie Anne Moss coming back to play Trinity. How this is expected to work given both of those character’s fates in the climax of The Matrix Revolutions is unknown at this point. Joining the original actors is Aquaman’s own Black Manta, Yahya Abdul-Mateen II (via Variety). Although not confirmed, many speculate that he could be playing a younger version of Morpheus in the film. One actor not confirmed to come back as of yet is original Morpheus actor Laurence Fishburne. This leads to even more speculation that Abdul-Mateen might be playing his part.
What is Matrix 4 About?
The announcement has no plot details at all. But it did call this movie Matrix 4, suggesting it is a straight up follow up to the third film. The Wachowskis shot the two Matrix sequels back-to-back, and both hit theaters in 2003. Although they have their fans to be sure, the sequels never quite lived up to the promise of the groundbreaking original film from 1999 in the eyes of many. It will be interesting to see if this new chapter coming can bring back the awe and wonder we all felt two decades back, when we saw Keanu do the whole bullet time thing for the very first time. Also, considering where we left the characters, it’ll be fascinating to see just how Neo and company manage to come back.
Featured Image: Warner Bros.