On the 15th anniversary of the theatrical release of The Watcher back in September 2015, I posted the back story on the controversy surrounding Keanu and the film here.
Earlier this week, Screen Rant resurrected that controversy when they posted Michael Kennedy’s article, ‘The Watcher: How Keanu Reeves Was Tricked Into Playing the Lead’. It seems odd to bring up this mess out of the blue in the middle of May. So you have to wonder if it was a coincidence or intentional to send a message.
Let’s look at the major points presented.
- Keanu verbally agreed to do a small part in the film to help friend and director Joe Charbanic.
- After agreeing to the small role, Charbanic rewrote the script and turned the small role into the leading character.
- In addition a supposed friend forged Keanu’s name on the contract for the film.
- His legal team warned of a prior case in which an actor broke a verbal agreement that ended up in an extended legal battle and they didn’t believe that he could conclusively prove the forgery in court. For these reasons, Keanu went ahead and did the film.
Now keep these points in the back of your mind while we take a look at a statement Keanu made in a 2017 interview for Men’s Fitness.
Of course, Reeves, who allegedly took in millions for his work on The Matrix movies alone, doesn’t need the dough. “Well, I do,” he insists, declining to elaborate too much. “It’s a long story that I don’t want to share with you.” Though later he offers a clue: “When you’re friends with someone, you want to help them, you sign something that turns into something else, and that comes back to haunt you.” (bolding mine)
Back when this interview came out, I noted the statement and thought it might be related to his production company. Since this interview, however, we have learned a lot of unsavory facts about someone and now I think it is possible this statement could be related to the book publishing company.
From the interview, we know he signed one thing that apparently he was either on board with or at the very least could live with that morphed into something else that he wasn’t down with. When you sign a contract or agreement, the signing parties get a copy and you can have it enforced legally. Signed contracts or agreements don’t just magically morph into something else. As a result, one has to ask if someone (1) illegally added or altered the terms of the agreement after it was signed or (2) produced a second agreement with altered terms and forged his signature on it.
Like I said at the beginning, was the recent article on The Watcher a coincidence or intentional. Joe Charbanic did a bait and switch and it looks like someone in his circle could have done the same thing.