Jada Pinkett Smith had quite a bit to talk about with Howard Stern on his show, which featured on Sirius XM, on Thursday morning. Though most of her talk was about marriage and relationships, she also happened to hit the topic of trying for the lead in The Matrix, years ago. Smith says that she really wanted the part but that she just did not click with Keanu Reeves, who played the lead. Smith said that she knew she lost after doing the screen test with Reeves, as the two just did not have any chemistry.
Chemistry between actors and actresses of a movie, can make or break it. Being able to work well together to play out the scenes, can create stunning moments in a film, which lead that film to win awards and recognition. As The Matrix did go on to win awards, it was probably best left the way that it was. However, since Smith is a great actress, the movie could have won just as many awards, if she had had the lead.
However, Jada Pinkett Smith believes the initial idea, that the movie was probably better off without her in the lead, as she told Stern. This is not a lack of confidence, on Jada’s part, as to her skill. Rather she told Stern that she believed the lead female, Carrie-Anne Moss was the right choice for the lead. As well, Smith was happy with her role, introduced in the second movie, as the rebel pilot Niobe.
The irony of the situation is that the lead role of Neo, which was given to Keanu Reeves, was initially offered to Smith’s husband, Will Smith. Jada Pinkett Smith stated that Moss brought her best to the screen, but that she still wishes that she had gotten the part of Trinity. Perhaps if Will had taken the part of Neo, Jada would have also had the lead. However, as Jada was excited about the movie, Will was not and passed up the opportunity, telling Jada, “I just don’t see it.”
The Wachowski siblings (formerly known as Andy and Larry, until Larry became Lana) were apparently impressed with Jada’s performance, even though she did not click with Reeves. This is how she landed in the role of created character Niobe. Just as it was, the movie did very well, grossing $500 million, and becoming a title in movie history.
The Matrix won a variety of awards including four Oscars, three MTV awards, two Saturn awards, a Blockbuster entertainment awards, and even some Golden Trailers. However, The Matrix Reloaded and The Matrix Revolutions, both of which Smith starred in also did very well. In fact, at the box office The Matrix Reloaded made almost more than the other two movies did combined, at the box office. But the two following movies did not win nearly as many awards as the original movie did, mostly only winning BMI film music awards, awards for visual effects, and one Teen Choice Award for Reloaded.
Though Jada Pinkett Smith and Keanu Reeves just did not seem to click, as far as working the two lead roles of a movie together, it still turned out pretty well for the actress who did later get to play a part in the sequel movies. Smith has seemed to have a lot of good chemistry with actors and actresses, in other movies she has played, including her lead in the TV series Hawthorne. With a long history of movies, Smith has been building her acting career for many years, and continues to impress on the big screen. Though she did not get the lead on The Matrix, she has gained the lead in many other films, where she impressed many with her superior acting skills. It is almost certain that if she had gotten the lead as Trinity, she would have done very well with it. Too bad Jada Pinkett Smith and Keanu Reeves just do not click.
Opinion by Crystal Boulware
IMDB: The Matrix
IMDB: Jada Pinkett Smith
Yahoo News: Jada Pinkett Smith Lost ‘Matrix’ Lead Because She ‘Didn’t Click’ With Keanu Reeves