Lana Wachowski’s The Matrix Resurrections is coming and the cast is firmly in place – barring any late surprises – and there are plenty of familiar faces ready to take another red pill. Keanu Reeves is, of course, back, despite his character’s fate at the end of The Matrix: Revolutions – and it wouldn’t be a Matrix movie without him, frankly – but he’s not the only one.
While 1999’s original The Matrix was a game-changing piece of cinema from the Wachowskis, the two sequels that followed are generally considered to be vastly inferior, but this hasn’t prevented constant calls for a fourth installment over the years. That wish finally became a reality in 2019, with an official announcement confirming The Matrix 4 was on its way with Lana Wachowski directing. Although story details are predictably scarce leading up to release, it appears that The Matrix Resurrections will merge together the old and new, with high-profile modern stars and cast members from the original trilogy both included in the lineup.
There are rumors that The Matrix 4 could be a passing of the torch, triggering a brand new trilogy, but others have suggested a time-travel story could be the order of the day, with younger versions of iconic characters appearing. Here are all the returning figures in The Matrix Resurrections.
Keanu Reeves as Neo
In The Matrix Revolutions, Neo manages to defeat Agent Smith by allowing himself to be taken over while connected to the Source, effectively frying Smith at the cost of Neo’s own life. Despite giving himself up to save the real world from Smith and the formidable machine army, the Oracle strongly hints that Neo might one day return, and this prediction will come to pass in The Matrix: Resurrections, in which original star, Keanu Reeves, will reprise his role. In the Matrix Resurrections trailer, Neo seems to have forgotten who he is, presumably back inside a version of the titular Matrix, living under his Thomas Anderson persona. The stage looks set for at least the first act of the sequel to be about Neo recovering his lost identity.
Carrie-Anne Moss as Trinity
Accompanying Reeves on his trip back into the Matrix is Carrie-Anne Moss, who played Neo’s lover, Trinity. Just like her partner, Trinity also died in The Matrix Revolutions, although her death was widely panned as one of the worst moments in the trilogy. Not only are the visuals somewhat suspect, but Trinity dies literally as soon as she’s served her purpose in ferrying Neo to his destination, impaled during the landing. The Matrix 4 can redeem Trinity, but it’s less clear how she’ll get back to her old self. Like Neo, she seems to be inside the Matrix again as well, not remembering either him or her Trinity identity.
Yahya Abdul-Mateen II as Morpheus
Yahya Abdul-Mateen II, who recently starred as protagonist Anthony McCoy in Candyman, has been rumored to be playing a younger version of Laurence Fishburne’s Morpheus since the actor was first cast. Sure enough, The Matrix Resurrections trailer confirmed that theory to be true. It’s still unclear why exactly this change has occurred, as Fishburne reportedly wasn’t asked back, making it likely that there’s a specific storyline reason Morpheus needed to be recast, possibly something to do with time travel.
Lambert Wilson as The Merovingian
Wilson had a supporting role in the two Matrix sequels as The Merovingian. Apparently one of the oldest programs in the Matrix, the Merovingian acted as a data highway in the digital world and led a gang of Exiles – programs that should’ve been deleted from the Matrix but had now fallen into doing the Merovingian’s bidding. It’s suggested that the Merovingian once had a larger influence over the Matrix, but became blinded by power and opulence. His fate is uncertain at the end of the trilogy, but Wilson returns in The Matrix 4, perhaps this time in a less villainous capacity. He’s yet to be seen in currently released footage.
Jada Pinkett-Smith as Niobe
Several reports have indicated some more surprising comebacks could be imminent in The Matrix 4, one of which is Jada Pinkett-Smith as Niobe. The captain of the Logos and the on-off lover of Morpheus, Niobe was a key member of the human resistance and remained alive at the end of the original trilogy, so her return would make sense.
Daniel Bernhardt as Agent Johnson
While not quite as famous as Agent Smith, Agent Johnson was another computerized villain in The Matrix trilogy, specifically The Matrix Reloaded. Actor and stuntman Daniel Bernhardt will reprise the role in The Matrix Resurrections, but it’s unclear why or what he’ll be doing, and he hasn’t appeared yet in any footage. Johnson was a recurring thorn in the side of Neo, Trinity, and Morpheus in Reloaded, including during the thrilling freeway chase.
? as Agent Smith
Interesting and candid comments from Hugo Weaving recently revealed that he was initially lined up to appear in The Matrix 4, but dropped out when filming dates were shifted. This confirms Agent Smith was included in Wachowski’s initial story for The Matrix 4, and another actor could feasibly play the character in Weaving’s absence. Several fan theories are already suggesting Agent Smith has been recast, possibly by Jonathan Groff, who appears opposite Neo in the trailer.
- The Matrix Resurrections (2021)Release date: Dec 22, 2021
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