Keanu Reeves’ acting career could have taken a turn on several instances. When it comes to The Matrix, he wasn’t the first actor considered. The same held true for John Wick as Harrison Ford and Clint Eastwood were initially considered for the roles.
There are other roles Keanu Reeves might regret turning down. Among his dream roles, included playing Batman. He got that wish, but it was in a voice-over role for DC’s League of Super-Pets.
In the following, we’ll take a closer look at Keanu’s desire to play Batman, and whether or not he turned down Batman Forever, with Val Kilmer taking on the role of Batman instead. We’ll also reveal Keanu’s thoughts on Robert Pattinson’s casting as the new Batman.
Keanu Reeves Got To Voice Batman In DC’s League Of Super-Pets
Keanu Reeves got his wish of starring as Batman, however, it was done through voice over work in the film, DC’s League of Super-Pets. The actor had a blast in the role, and admits it would still be a dream to play Batman and actually wear the suit.
“I love Batman as a character and I love him in the comic books, in the films, so to get the opportunity to voice — to play — Batman was awesome. … It’s always been a dream.”
The film’s director Jared Stern was also complimentary of Keanu Reeves and his different take on the voice of Batman.
“So we thought our Batman is haunted. You know, he’s a, he’s just sort of a little bit lost in this kind of crazy eyes. And he’s still Batman. He still kicks butt, but he’s still an awesome superhero. But he’s just, he’s seen some stuff in his life. And most importantly, for our movie, he’s a guy that could really use a pet.”
“And so Keanu [Reeves] fits so perfectly for that his voice just was so right for this guy that’s a little bit off. A little bit haunted by his past. But deep down a good guy who could use a dog.”
Keanu thrived in what he deemed as his dream role. However, did he really turn down the opportunity years prior?
Keanu Reeves Was Among Those Considered For The Role Of Batman In Batman Forever
Under Joel Schumacher’s guidance, Batman Forever received mixed reviews at the best. The film turned a decent profit but wasn’t the greatest Batman film in terms of reviews. Val Kilmer himself admitted that his expectations of the film were shattered, as he accepted the role without even reading the script.
Kilmer revealed that although it was his dream job, the suit hurt his experience. “Whatever boyhood excitement I had was crushed by the reality of the Batsuit,” the mercurial actor says in the doc. “Yes, every boy wants to be Batman. They actually want to be him…not necessarily play him in a movie.”
Kilmer would go on to state that because of the suit, he struggled to hear his peers. His acting also suffered throughout the film.
“I think it made no difference what I was doing. I tried to be like an actor on a soap opera. When I would turn to Nicole…I couldn’t count how many times I put my hands on my hips.”
The film could have looked completely different. According to Movie Web, both Keanu Reeves and Ethan Hawke were considered for the roles, but turned it down.
“Before Val Kilmer became the billionaire crime-fighter, Reeves, along with Moon Knight’s Ethan Hawke, were both offered the role but passed up on the option,” Movie Web writes.
It would have been interesting to see Keanu rock the suit. His career exploded only a few years later thanks to The Matrix, but who knows what would’ve happened had he accepted the role.
Keanu Reeves Would Love To Portray Batman But Praised Robert Pattinson And The New Direction
Keanu Reeves is very hands-on when it comes to the roles that he takes on. Screenwriter Derek Kolstad praised the actor for how involved he was with John Wick at the start. Kolstad recalled seeing a massive stack of scripts in Keanu’s office, showing the actor truly reads everything.
He is by no means tempted by big offers. He turned down $12 million for Speed 2 because of the script and as it turned out, he was completely right.
“It wasn’t against any of the artists that were involved in the project, but at that time — I’m sure we’ve all had this kind of feeling sometimes when things just don’t feel right, and that was how I was feeling,” Reeves said.
One project Keanu would still love to play in is Batman, however, the actor had nothing but praise for Robert Pattinson and his future with the role.
“Pattinson’s got Batman right now, and he’s doing awesome. Maybe down the road. Maybe when they need an older Batman.”