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Keanu Reeves Talks About Playing Doctor in "Something's Gotta Give"

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Something's Gotta Give Photo of Keanu Reeves

Keanu Reeves in "Something's Gotta Give."

Columbia Pictures
Keanu Reeves falls hard for a more mature woman in the romantic comedy “Something’s Gotta Give,” starring Jack Nicholson and Diane Keaton. Reeves plays a doctor who helps Nicholson’s character recover while at the same time falling for the woman who’s reluctantly acting as Nicholson’s nurse (Keaton).

KEANU REEVES ('Julian'):

Is it fun making movies that don’t use blue screens?
If you're speaking about going from “The Matrix” to this film, “Something's Gotta Give,” I would speak about it going from kind of a formalism of “The Matrix” to the naturalism of this piece. For me, trying to do different kinds of roles, it was a wonderful opportunity, really, just to do something different. And of course to work with Jack Nicholson and Diane Keaton, and work with a wonderful, beautiful script directed by Nancy Meyers, it was really for me a dream come true.

Did Nancy Meyers come to you with this project?
I was looking for a job - you laugh, but it's true - and I read the script. It was a beautiful script and then I went in to meet on it, and I auditioned for the role.

You still audition?
Yeah, sure.

Would you say that intimacy is the real issue of this film and that it's a universal theme for men and women?
Yes, I would say that. Some people speak of this film as being age-oriented, but I would say that it's ageless-oriented, personally. I think that it's about taking a risk, opening up and somehow it seems so terrifying to open oneself up to another. I think that we see these two beautiful, brave people in this film, Diane Keaton and Jack Nicholson, just kind of open up to each other. We get to enjoy it and see it on screen.

Your character intuitively knows the emotions of this woman. Do you think people have that in real life?
I played a character that I feel had a lot of life experience. Playing a doctor, I think that he's had an objective point of view of people. I think that that informed who he was, and he's a sensitive guy. I think that if you pay attention to someone that you love, you're going to ‘get’ them.

He has a line [in which] he says, “Isn't it great that I'm not intimidated by your brilliance?” No, it's “How great is it for you that I'm not intimidated by your brilliance?” He gets her, and in that line, he's saying, “I recognize that this must be hard for you, that other people might be intimidated by your brilliance and I see that it's isolating for you.” And he's like, “Baby, you ain't alone because I love how brilliant you are.” So, I think that he is telling her that he gets her.

Do you think age plays a role in relationships?
I think that you're naive if you think that it doesn't, but I think that it doesn't matter at the same time. It's like one of those kinds of interpersonal things. I think that if you're are connecting with someone, it's like, “Don't you know that I'm…” And they're like, “Yeah.”

Are you a hopeless romantic?
I don't know. Am I a hopeless romantic? It's fun to be hopelessly in love. It's dangerous, but it's fun.

Can you talk about Diane Keaton? She said she was scared about your love scene and that you helped her.
She's great. I mean, it's nerve-wracking. Kissing someone is pretty intimate, actually very intimate, and your heart always kind of skips a beat before you do that. But with my character, it was okay. My character kind of takes her and asks her. He kind of puts his hand on her and says, “Do you want to kiss because it's going to be alright?”

What did you think of how Jack and Diane worked and behaved?
Behaved? “How are you behaving today, Jack?” “'Well, Keanu, however I want.” [Laughter] That was a good lesson to learn. They're both professionally and personally gracious and wonderful people and unique in terms of speaking of differences, I think that I'll speak about what's the same. There's not beating [around the bush]. It's just cutting to the chase. They're consummate professionals, incredibly awesome at what they do and any moment that I got to share with them, I felt lucky to be there because they were just great people and really talented artists.

What about the fallout from “The Matrix” now that it's over?
Fallout? Where's the shelter?

Are you glad it's over? Ewan McGregor was talking about he's glad he did “Star Wars,” but also glad that the eight years of work have come to an end.
How many years? Eight years? Good God, maybe he and I can go to the hotel bar and reminisce about being in trilogies. “Oh my God, can you believe?” “I know, it's mad, isn't it? We're so lucky it's mad.”

Do you think that it was a dangerous thing to go and do a trilogy?
Not at all. I think that they're wonderful films and I'll speak about them until I croak. I loved them. I had a great experience.

PAGE 2: Selecting Roles, More on "The Matrix," and Reeves' Upcoming Movie, "Constantine"

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