Tall, dark and handsome is the obvious description when it comes to Keanu. Whether he’s running through bullets and performing impossible moves, cameoing as himself in weird rom-coms, or playing a relatable geek, Keanu just exudes this cool guy energy that’s hard to look away from.
His career in acting spans 3 decades - the highlights include The Matrix, Point Break and, more recently, John Wick - but it’s not just his on-screen hits that gave him a major popularity boost in 2019. In the midst of hundreds of #MeToo scandals about once untouchable on-screen favourites, Keanu appeared to be one of the only good guys left - as he said himself, “[being a good guy] is a nice thing to be known for,” especially in Hollywood.
Interviews with other actors who’ve worked with him are weirdly positive too. For one of his latest roles in ‘Always Be My Maybe’, in which he played an exaggerated version of himself (the exact wording was “a hyped-up, slightly aggro horndog whose stratospheric level of celebrity is exactly the point”), his co-stars and director were struck with how down-to-earth and excited he was to be part of it. The director, Nahnatchka Khan, said he’ll always remember Keanu ordering “a Corona and mixed nuts” until his dying day.
Just a quick browse of R/KeanuBeingAwesome shows you why this man has gained a giant online following: donating to children’s hospitals; taking time to talk and take pictures with his fans; recognisable, energetic acting in every role he’s taken on; and acts of kindness like helping a stranger find their way are all celebrated by his fans. The subreddit has 342k members, and it’s full of artwork dedicated to both Keanu and the roles he’s played.
Now normally, a man of his appearance (read: gorgeous) would have a mainly female fanbase, but it seems men fangirl over him too. His role in the Matrix introduced a geekiness to his previously cool-guy-stoner persona, and in many interviews Keanu has admitted to being pretty awesome off-screen too: He told Esquire his “preferred mode of transportation” was the motorcycle he rides everyday, and shrugged off the numerous resulting injuries.