Keanu Reeves, Laurence Fishburne, and Carrie-Anne Moss are all wild card actors that star in the film The Matrix (1999). I place them in both the wild card and character categories because they are famous, but have not yet reached star status. I do not believe them to be personality actors in this film either, because although I think that they adapted to their roles well, they did not incorporate their own personalities into them. Also they were not impersonating or interpreting anyone. After eliminating those categories it only leaves the wild card and character categories to classify them. Reeves did an excellent job of playing Neo; despite his less than star status he was able to portray himself as one of the most important people in the world. I suppose because I cannot see any other actor playing the part now that I have seen him play it. Moss is less familiar to me, I have not seen her in many films, but her role as Trinity in The Matrix is the only one of its kind that I have seen her play.
Some may classify Reeves as a personality actor dating back to his role as Ted in the Bill and Ted movies of the early 1990’s. I actually disagree with that classification because of those movies. Reeves is clearly not stupid, or naïve as his character portrays him to be in those films.
Movies like Speed (1994) quickly showed the world that Reeves was a force to be reckoned with, and that he wasn’t limited to comedies, he did just as well, if not better, in action films. Reeves has played in other genres such as drama and romance in A Walk in the Clouds (1995), but he seems to do best in action and science fiction films. I suppose that some of his personality may be present in other action and sci-fi films, but the fact that he is able to play so many different roles in many different genres makes him a wild card in my book.
Keanu Reeves – IMDb. (n.d.). Retrieved from http://www.imdb.com/name/nm0000206/
The Matrix (1999) – IMDb. (n.d.). Retrieved from http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0133093/
Goodykoontz, B., & Jacobs, C. P. (2011). FILM: FROM WATCHING TO SEEING. San Diego, CA: Bridgepoint Education, Inc.