Entertainment & Arts

The Matrix rebooted: Is nothing sacred?

Keanu Reeves in The Matrix Image copyright Getty Images
Image caption Keanu Reeves has said he may be prepared to return to the world of The Matrix

The Matrix could be reborn, as Hollywood continues to mine much-loved films in the hope of creating money-spinning spin-offs.

Warner Bros is "in the early stages of developing a relaunch" of the groundbreaking and mind-bending 1999 movie, according to reports.

The Hollywood Reporter calls it a "reboot" but also says it's "not clear what shape the project will take".

But fans, who have been scarred by two sub-par sequels, are wary of a remake.

The Matrix starred Keanu Reeves as Neo, who has to free humanity from an artificial reality, and Laurence Fishburne as rebel leader Morpheus.

Image copyright Getty Images
Image caption Could Michael B Jordan play a young Morpheus?
  • Housam Najjar was one of numerous fans to tweet things along the lines of: "Apparently the Matrix is getting rebooted... Is nothing sacred?"
  • Comic book creator Robert Liefeld wrote: "Every single frame of The Matrix is perfect. It is a brilliant film without flaws. Don't re-tell Neo's story."
  • Comedian Travon Free wrote: "An original masterpiece called Get Out made $113m on a $4m budget and Warner Bros is rebooting The Matrix. Spend that money on new ideas!"
  • Forbes film critic Scott Mendelson said: "Hollywood has gone from an industry that would make/distribute The Matrix to an industry that will reboot The Matrix..."
  • Another fan named Toby said: "Instead of remaking The Matrix they should expand the in-movie universe like Star Wars."

With its much-imitated style and special effects and themes of technology, identity and surveillance, the film was a box office hit, won four Oscars and has retained its relevance and fanbase in the digital age.

Deadline said the new film was "in the exploratory phase" and that the studio was likely to put together a writers' room "to figure out the best possible way to relaunch the franchise".

Image copyright Getty Images
Image caption Laurence Fishburne, Carrie-Anne Moss and Keanu Reeves have appeared in all three Matrix films

The Hollywood Reporter said the studio could follow the example of the standalone Star Wars movies - Rogue One and the forthcoming Han Solo film - which are offshoots of the main story.

"Perhaps a young Morpheus movie could come out of the exploration, as an example," it suggested, adding the original writers and directors, the Wachowski siblings, were not involved "at this stage".

Reeves recently said he would consider returning to the world of The Matrix - if the Wachowskis were on board. However it's thought that Warner will look for a new director and star.

Reports also say The Avengers writer Zak Penn is in line to work on the script and Creed's Michael B Jordan could star.

In recent years, other high-profile remakes like Ghostbusters, Ben-Hur, Robocop and Total Recall have struggled to live up to the originals.

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