It’s been fourteen years since The Matrix trilogy last left moviegoing fans with a groundbreaking, epic cyberpunk sci-fi action saga that broke the mold in more ways than several. Earning more than $1.6 billion dollars globally between all three films and rounded out with a series of spin-off shortfilms, cut scenes and animated properties, the franchise has been long rumored for a remake or a continuation in some capacity.
Even fake trailers over the years had people convinced, but now we have reporting from THR that details the specifics of recent efforts to reboot the franchise at Warner Bros. with the studio possibly eyeing actor Michael B. Jordan for a role. The report also cites that Zak Penn, who bares story and screenwriting credits on many a Marvel comic book film as well as films like Behind Enemy Lines and Steven Spielberg’s Ready Player One adaptation, is being circled to pen a treatment.
The first film, starring Keanu Reeves, Lawrence Fishburne, Carrie Anne-Moss and Hugo Weaving, launched major cult fandom with then-brothers Larry and Andy Wachowski who helmed The Matrix, taking their inspiration from various sci-fi, manga and anime, and even Asian film elements. Reeves played Thomas Anderson, a computer programmer whose growing suspicions of the “reality” around him bring him in the throes of the elusive Morpheus (Fishburne), who awakens him to a grim, dystopian world overrun by machines where humans are stored in pods and used as power sources.
Taking on the new identity, “Neo” and ultimately falling in love with the beautiful and self-sufficient Trinity (Moss) during his tumultuous journey of self-discovery, his release into the real world becomes a catalyst for the sprawling war between man and machine in both realities, seuging him into a death and subsequent rebirth that not only allows him the necessary abilities to battle the guardians known as “agents” within the virtual world that imprison mankind in its virtual stasis, but also to see past the façade of both worlds in order to possibly be the savior that man and machine kind needs to instill peace between both sides.
Each of the principal cast members accrued some of their own injuries in the course of training and filming the first film, and not for nothing either. With the trilogy in full effect, The Matrix, would also become a pivotal starting point for something of a new era of martial arts cinema amid the Hong Kong crossover from the late 1990’s, foreseeing action legend Yuen Woo-ping’s progression in Hollywood movies like Kill Bill Vol. 1 & 2, The Forbidden Kingdom and Danny The Dog (a.k.a. Unleashed). In turn, it would later build the necessary relationships between Reeves, Yuen team member Tiger Chen, and stuntman Chad Stahelski in the years that followed with the establishment of 87eleven Action Design in Inglewood, California, now home to a raft of major film credits including the Reeves V. Chen kung fu drama, Man Of Tai Chi and Reeves’s recent career resurgence in the forthcoming John Wick trilogy.
Reeves himself has not been confirmed for involvement in the new reboot, nor the Wachowskis’, now known as Lana and Andy who’ve moved on to direct fantasy epics, Cloud Atlas and Jupiter Ascending. Producer Joel Silver himself is currently not poised for involvement as the details and specifics of Warner Bros.’s interest leaves little else to confirm except that the news otherwise exists, and with the hopes that the studio can use potentially unexplored areas of the initial trilogy to dig deeper and expand the way Disney has with Star Wars and the Marvel films.
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