The Matrix Resurrections Star On Feeling ‘Intimidated’ Doing Action Scenes Opposite Keanu Reeves

Jessica Henwick as Bugs in The Matrix Resurrections
(Image credit: Village Roadshow Pictures)

The word ‘iconic’ gets tossed around a lot nowadays, but when it comes to the high-octane fight sequences of The Matrix, the word definitely fits. In addition to permanently altering the creation of action movies in Hollywood, The Matrix also cemented Keanu Reeves’ status as an action star. So how does it feel to be a series newcomer who has to keep up with the likes of John Wick on the set of The Matrix Resurrections? According to Jessica Henwick, the answer is pretty darn intimidating. 

Jessica Henwick recently sat down with Collider to chat about her new gig voicing Elle in the animated series Blade Runner: Black Lotus and her upcoming turn as Bugs in The Matrix Resurrections. As a fresh face to fans of The Matrix, she definitely felt the nerves when it was time to film more of Lana Wachowski’s epic combat scenes. To exacerbate the issue, Henwick was on tap to perform alongside noted action hero Keanu Reeves - a co-star that would make any actor feel a bit starstruck. She explained: 

Now that’s somewhere I felt pressure because those fights are so seminal [to The Matrix]. Those moments from the original have stayed in my head, so many of those fight beats, that was really where I was intimidated going into it. I knew I had to be performing up here. You’re performing with Keanu. It’s John Wick. He knows what he’s doing. You can’t hold him back, in any way. I had to give it my all. I devoted myself to it. We trained pretty hard in the run-up, and we kept training all the way through filming.

While Jessica Henwick has had her fair share of movie combat experience thanks to her role as Colleen on Marvel’s Iron Fist, it’s understandable that she’d be a bit anxious to share the screen with Keanu Reeves. She said it herself - that’s John Wick. He’s probably so used to jaw-dropping action sequences that he doesn’t even break a sweat during filming. Add director Lana Wachowski’s unique filmmaking style to the mix, and it’s easy to see how the Game of Thrones alum could feel the pressure.  

But if Jessica Henwick’s shots in the trailer for The Matrix Resurrections are any indication, she doesn’t have much to worry about. In just a few short minutes, Bugs backflips off a skyscraper, leaps over an exploding cop car, sprints across a ceiling, and maneuvers her way through a storm of bullets - all while keeping her black sunglasses perfectly perched on her nose. Fans will have to wait for the release of The Matrix Resurrections to get the full picture, but I feel pretty good about putting my money on Henwick. 

The Matrix Resurrections will arrive in theaters and on the streaming platform HBO Max on December 22, 2021. 

Rachel Romean

Actor, singer, and occasional dancer. Likes: fashion, books, old buildings. Dislikes: cilantro, the NJ Turnpike, sneaker wedges.