Why The Matrix 4 Finally Got Made Even Though The Wachowskis Said No Many Times Before

Keanu Reeves in The Matrix 4

It’s been over 15 years since The Matrix Trilogy concluded, the story wrapped up in a pretty bow as a perfect present for fans of the sci-fi/action genre. Now the Wachowskis, the writing and directorial sisters behind the franchise, have untied that bow to add to the franchise with a 4th film. Lana Wachowski has now opened up as to why she decided to make The Matrix 4 now, even though they had said no so many times in the past.

Lana Wachowski, half of the duo behind sci-fi films The Matrix and Cloud Atlas, recently spoke at Berlin’s International Literature Festival about the Matrix franchise, saying that both she and sister Lilly considered the franchise all wrapped up and concluded just how they wanted. They had accomplished what they wanted with the film, and Wachowski compared the masterpiece of a franchise to a composition of music, saying:

Yeah, it was concluded in my eyes as well and Lily’s eyes. We wrote it as a very elegant structure which was dialectical in nature. And it was resonant with ideas of birth, life, death. And it was thesis, antithesis, synthesis and these things which we wanted the story to be in a triptych for a reason. Many stories are just long and they split them up. The Matrix was designed from the beginning like a piece of music or a philosophical argument. It had a really beautiful elegance to it and we loved it and we thought that was it. It was done.

Even though the Wachowskis were happy to leave their art alone and let their final result stand, apparently Warner Brothers had other plans. In the same appearance, Lana Wachowski explained that the production company practically begged the filmmakers for a 4th film for years, even bribing them with huge sums of money. However it was not the money that yielded the sisters, but tragedy and loss. Here’s what the writer/director said on why she finally came around for The Matrix Resurrections:

Every year Warner Bros. would ask us to make another one and every year they would drive truckloads of money up to our house and said, ‘You could have this.’ and we said, ‘No, no, no, we’re not interested. Not interested. Not interested.’ It never was interesting to me as an idea of trying to continue it. Then something really hard happened in which both my parents got ill. My dad first got ill and my wife and I went home to take care of them. We were really close to them. Also a good friend also died in this short period. It was just this constant grief: my dad died, then this friend died, then my mom died. I didn’t know how to process this kind of grief.

Losing one loved one is hard, and the Wachowskis lost 3 in a short period of time. Apparently the loss of both parents caused Lana Wachowski to look to two other beloved people in her life, Neo and Trinity from The Matrix franchise, and the need to resurrect them surfaced. Finally, the Sense8 director says she found comfort in the characters in such a tragic time:

My brain has always reached into my imagination and one night I was just crying and I couldn’t sleep and suddenly my brain just exploded this whole story. I couldn’t have my mom and dad and I couldn’t talk to my mom and yet suddenly I had Neo and Trinity, arguably the two most important characters in my life. And it was immediately comforting

The past year and half has been filled with loss for a lot of people, which makes the resurrection of two beloved characters mean even more to both the creators and diehard Matrix fans. The Matrix 4 brings back both Keanu Reeves and Carrie-Anne Moss, and, with its fitting new title, is set to release in just a few months on December 22nd - the perfect Christmas present for the sci-fi community.

Carlie Hoke
Content Writer

Constantly thinking about books, coffee, and the existential dread I feel from Bo Burnham’s Inside.  While writing I’m also raising a chaotic toddler, who may or may not have picked up personality traits from watching one too many episodes of Trailer Park Boys.