It was officially announced in August that The Matrix 4 is in development, and Keanu Reeves will be among the returning players for this next installment in the iconic sci-fi franchise. Until today, we had no idea when The Matrix 4 was coming out, but now the project finally has a release date, and it turns out that Neo is primed to face off against John Wick, another Reeves character, at the box office.
Warner Bros (via Variety) has scheduled The Matrix 4 to come out on May 21, 2021, the same day that John Wick: Chapter 4 is scheduled for release. So if you thought the Keanussiance couldn’t get any wilder (and keep in mind, that includes him playing a sage piece of sagebrush in The Spongebob Movie: Sponge on the Run), now we’ve reached a point where two of his biggest franchises are dropping new installments at the same time. That’s crazy!
While the idea of Neo and John Wick going head-to-head the same opening weekend sounds enticing, something tells me eventually one of them will move to a new date, akin to when Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice and Captain America: Civil War were once scheduled to open on the same day in 2016. There’s only so much Keanu one person can handle, and having two of his movies, both of which are quite similar to one another, playing at the same time could be overkill.
It’d be one thing if The Matrix 4 was opening opposite a romantic comedy or period drama that Keanu Reeves starred in, as those would draw different audiences. But both The Matrix and John Wick franchises are action-heavy, with Reeves’ respective characters both being skilled in combat and gunplay. And I doubt Reeves would want one of his movies interfering with how the other performs.
So assuming one of those movies will move, which will it be? My money’s on John Wick: Chapter 4. Because although the John Wick franchise has been critically and commercially successful (with Chapter 3 - Parabellum’s home release being Lionsgate’s best in the last five years), The Matrix is still incredibly culturally resonant in the near two decades that have passed since the original trilogy concluded. Mr. Wick may have a growing fanbase, but The Matrix is definitely more well-known.
For now though, the plan is for The Matrix 4 and John Wick: Chapter 4 to open together, which is wild. The Matrix 4 is taking over that slot for Akira, which is now undated, making it unclear if Warner Bros will still go through with the anime adaptation at a later date or if it will be shelved.
While we’re still in the dark on what’s in store for The Matrix 4, other familiar faces joining Keanu Reeves include Carrie-Anne Moss and Jada Pinkett, who will reprise Trinity and Niobe, respectively. The new additions include Yahya Abdul-Mateen II, Jessica Henwick, Neil Patrick Harris, Jonathan Groff and Toby Onwumere.
No specific plot details have been revealed yet for John Wick: Chapter 4 yet either, but at least we have an idea of how that story will kick off. At the end of Chapter 3 - Parabellum, the injured John was rescued by the now-scarred Bowery King, played by Matrix costar Laurence Fishburne (there’s still no word on if he’s participating in The Matrix 4). With both of them having been wronged by The High Table, it looks like they’ll be working together to bring down the criminal organization.
Stay tuned to CinemaBlend for more updates on both The Matrix 4 and John Wick: Chapter 4, but in the meantime, plan your trips to the theater next year with our 2020 release schedule.
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Connoisseur of Marvel, DC, Star Wars, John Wick, MonsterVerse and Doctor Who lore. He's aware he looks like Harry Potter and Clark Kent.