KEANU REEVES RAISED IN CANADA
Keanu Charles Reeves is a Canadian actor, born on September 2, 1964. He is now 51 year old (2015).
He was born in Beirut Lebanon where his mother, of English origin, was working. She met there, with the father of Keanu, the geologist Samuel Reeves.
Samuel is an American born in Hawaii, with Chinese blood. Due to the tension raised by the Israeli war , they moved first to Australia then to New York. The couple splet soon and Samuel moved back to Hawaii where Keanu used to spend his vacations, but when Keanu turned his 13, the father disappeared. He had no more contact since then.
Keanu followed his mother , Patricia Bond, who worked as costume designer and moved frequently to various countries. Keanu had several step-fathers and lived in Sydney (Australia), New York City, then Toronto (Ontario, Canada). Keanu and his sisters were mainly raised by their grandparents in Toronto .
A TEENAGER PLAYING HOCKEY AND FASCINATED BY THEATER
At school, Reeves had quite poor results . If he never missed a hockey practice he was quite lazy about classes. Even if he was successful in Sports and nominated Player of the Year at De La Salle College , the other performances were so poor that he was asked to leave Toronto’s High School. He moved to Performing Arts studies.
At home, his mother, was quite successful in her job and started to design stage costumes for celebrities like Dolly Parton, Alice cooper or David Bowie. The small family house turned into a passing point for glam rockers stars. Keanu’s Mom really loved music at that time and when sewing she was always listening music.
Both, home atmosphere and school background pushed him to enter into the world of preforming arts world. He was fascinated by the possibility to become someone else on stage.
A PARTICULAR AND SUCCESSFUL CAREER
COCA-COLA ADS AS A START
The first appearance on screen was for an ads for “Coca Cola” in 1980. The ads was released worldwide. Here is the commercial:
In 1981, the 17 year old teenager enrolled to Etobicoke School of Arts, the Toronto based High School of Performing Arts.
WOLFBOY : AN HOMOEROTIC ROLE AT THEATRE PASSE MURAILLE
In 1984 he played Bernie in “Wolfboy”, an innocent teen who was placed in an insane asylum. The guy next room who believes that he is a werewolf gets seduced him and at then they fall in love, but the end was tragic. The play became a hit in the gay community in Toronto and immediately drew attention to the 19-year-old boy.
To promote the play, the two actors were requested to make a photoshoot (see below). The pictures were a bit provocative, the two boys (Carl Marotte was 24) were almost kissing. According to Carl, Keanu and his mother who was always supportive for the career of his sun, liked the photos. By the way, Reeves was delighted by the unusual and shocking impact of them.
Gossips raised from this experience about the sexuality of the actor. This was still going on even if Keanu declared in an interview that he was not gay. But he added that he has no problem with homosexual role. He confirmed it by playing gay characters later on with his role in the movie “My Private Idaho”.
He recently declared “If I’m asked to play a gay man again, No problem! I”m not buying the bullshit that that will arm my image at all.”
YOUNGBLOOD, A FIRST ROLE BETWEEN 2 STARS
In 1986, Reeves got his first significant role in an American hockey movie Youngblood, directed by Peter Markle. Between the main characters Dean Youngblood played by Rob Lowe and the captain played by Patrick Swayze, Keanu is appearing every once in a while as a hockey goalie with an hilarious French-Canadian accent.
‘Youngblood’ was a star vehicle for Rob Lowe and obviously Keanu Reeves’ part was small. And Reeves reminds how he felt at that time in an interview by declaring:
“I wouldn’t call it a breakthrough, because we all expected more from this movie. Otherwise I wouldn’t have stood on skates again. Pretty ironic. I drive 4,000 miles to change my life and suddenly I’m just the hockey player. Rob Lowe was the star.”