With The Matrix turning twenty-two this year, and the imminent release of The Matrix Resurrections coming in December, Warner Bros. has released new footage to celebrate the legacy of the science fiction classic. The studio rounded up both returning and brand-new cast members for a new video — including, of course, Keanu Reeves and Carrie-Anne Moss — to discuss the impact of the original film, not only on themselves, but on society as a whole, from the way we’ve adopted its vernacular to the immense popularity of sequences like “dodge this.”
The Matrix has become not only a popular film, but a pillar of pop culture, and the cast of Resurrections knows it. Moss describes the original as the “opportunity of a lifetime,” and new, younger cast members, including Jessica Henwick, Yahya Abdul-Mateen II, and Eréndira Ibarra, reflect on how much seeing the film changed their lives, how they left the theater changed and reinvigorated after experiencing The Wachowskis’ vision for the first time.
“It’s sort of impossible to articulate how it’s seeped into our minds and culture,” says new star Jonathan Groff. “I can’t even remember not having seen it. I can’t remember my life before the world of The Matrix.”
Henwick notes that nearly every aspect of the film’s ideology “entered pop culture and stayed,” from its filmmaking techniques — like the iconic “Bullet Time” sequence — to its terminology, particularly references to a “glitch in the Matrix.” And of course, no one is more aware of the film’s impact than its original stars, those who still find the film and their characters following them around to this day.
“While we were making the first Matrix,” Reeves says, “I felt like that it’s something beyond yourself. It’s big. You’ll hear the sentence, ‘The Matrix changed my life.’ So I say, ‘Thank you. It changed mine too.’”
The Matrix Resurrections also stars Jada Pinkett Smith, Lambert Wilson, Daniel Bernhardt, Neil Patrick Harris, Priyanka Chopra Jonas, Christina Ricci, Telma Hopkins, Max Riemelt, Toby Onwumere, Brian J. Smith, Andrew Caldwell, and Ellen Hollman. The film, directed by Lana Wachowski and co-written with David Mitchell and Aleksander Hemon, premieres in theaters and on HBO Max on December 22. Check out the full video below: