Keanu Reeves has plenty of experience playing high-octane characters with all of the requisite skills to kick ass across multiple mediums. But for all the iconic characters he’s played who’ve exacted maximum damage to his enemies, the actor has never actually donned a true superhero costume. That could be changing sooner than later with recent rumors that Keanu Reeves is in serious talks to join the Marvel Cinematic Universe as Ghost Rider.
This isn’t the first time we’ve heard that Keanu Reeves could become the flaming-skulled, motorcycle-riding Johnny Blaze / Ghost Rider. The rumors started popping up a few months ago when Marvel was in full casting mode on some of its newer projects. At the time Reeves appeared also in the running to play Moon Knight, but we know that role went to Oscar Isaac. That it’s creeping back into the rumor cycle now likely means the two sides are getting close to a deal that could land him full in the Marvel Cinematic Universe.
Originally, Ghost Rider appeared headed for Marvel’s Phase 4, but that ship has likely sailed considering they haven’t cast the role yet and the timeline for actual production on the movie is anything but set. It’s looking more and more likely that the movie will be part of Phase 5. That rumor has it possibly not even being the Johnny Blaze character, but rather Frank Castle’s turn as the Cosmic Ghost Rider. Whether Keanu Reeves would be considered for that role or if they’d turn it back over to Jon Bernthal is unclear. Reeves would help fit an alternate timeline version and actually has the look and feel of the character already.
Whether or not he signs on as Ghost Rider, Keanu Reeves has his dance card completely full for the time being. He’s got a bunch of high-profile, highly-anticipated franchise additions coming down the pike. He’s set to reprise his role as Neo in the upcoming Matrix 4. It will have been almost 18 years since that franchise presumably wrapped up, but he’ll be back in the computer program once again, this time with maybe even more powers. That will hit screens at the end of 2021.
Additionally, Keanu Reeves is also gearing up for John Wick Chapter 4 and Chapter 5. The former is headed to theaters in May of 2022 with the latter simply announced. That Reeves is the headliner in two of the biggest hit franchises is remarkable. But the dude could definitely add a third blockbuster action movie to his belt without skipping a beat.
And it would be a much-needed shot in the arm for the Ghost Rider character whose two previous movie runs with Nic Cage in the role were financially “meh” and critical disasters. 2007’s Ghost Rider was a schlocky mess barely doubling up its production costs with $230 million at the box office and bombing with critics at 28% on the Tomatometer. The sequel, Spirit of Vengeance was somehow even worse at $132 million and 18%. That was the end of the line for the character. Bringing on Keanu Reeves would almost instantaneously reinvigorate the brand and make it easier to forget the sins of the past.
These Keanu Reeves-as-Ghost Rider rumors have just been around too long to not think there’s at least something in the works. The casting would be perfect and the Marvel Cinematic Universe has grown to be such a star-studded behemoth that so many A-listers are joining the ranks. Here’s to hoping Reeves is next.