“It would cost like half a billion dollars”: Keanu Reeves Almost Saved Us from Disastrous Netflix Cowboy Bebop Adaptation by Playing Spike Himself in Unmade Movie

Keanu Reeves Almost Saved Us from Disastrous Netflix Cowboy Bebop Adaptation by Playing Spike Himself in Unmade Movie
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Back in 2008, Keanu Reeves could have become the savior of humanity if a live-action Cowboy Bebop series would have been made. The Netflix-released series was quite the disaster as fans went to appreciate the classic 1998 anime more but things could have been different.


In a report, it was stated that in 2008, Keanu Reeves was attached to a live-action Cowboy Bebop series as the lead character Spike Spiegel. The project never made it to the air since they did not have enough money but if they had, Cowboy Bebop could have saved humanity from the 2021 Netflix disaster.

John Cho as Spike Speigel in Netflix's Cowboy Bebop (2021).
John Cho as Spike Speigel in Netflix’s Cowboy Bebop (2021).

When Keanu Reeves Was Cast As Spike In Cowboy Bebop

After he found fame by starring as Neo in The Matrix franchise, Keanu Reeves was asked to portray the role of Spike Speigel in the live-action remake of Cowboy Bebop. The original anime was released in 1998. Cowboy Bebop traveled to America in 2001 where it gained traction and paved the way for anime in America.

Keanu Reeves
Keanu Reeves

Also read: John Wick Fans Found This Keanu Reeves Moment Painful to Watch After He Looked Visibly Upset With Interviewer’s Confession

Well, the John Wick actor Keanu Reeves was once attached to the role of Spike Speigel back in 2008. The movie was going to be a live-action remake of the classic 1998 anime and as per the reports, the movie was going to be quite awesome to watch.

After much deliberation and negotiations, it was finally confirmed in 2013 that the live-action film had fallen through. Keanu Reeves took to his Reddit account to talk about the details and as per the actor’s words, it seems that he deeply regretted the loss of what could have been a great film.


“‘Cowboy Bebop’ does not look like it is going to happen with me in it. The script that was written was great and amazing, but it would cost like half a billion dollars to make it, and while I wished and hoped I would have done that project, we are working on trying to get ‘Bill & Ted 3.’ There’s a script and we are trying to put it together.”

Eventually, the project came to a halt and it was years later when Netflix decided to remake the classic anime series into a live-action one. Netflix’s Cowboy Bebop was hailed as a miserable and failed adaptation of the classic anime.

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When Keanu Reeves’ Action Scenes Inspired Cowboy Bebop Director

Cowboy Bebop

Related: Keanu Reeves Had a Crush on Sandra Bullock But His Intense Scene With Another ‘Speed’ Co-star Became the Highlight of His Life


The San Diego Comic-Con 2023 recently announced that a new sci-fi anime series is in the works created by Shinichirō Watanabe alongside studio Mappa. Watanabe is the director known for directing the original 1998 anime Cowboy Bebop and what’s more interesting is that the upcoming anime will have a connection to Keanu Reeves’ John Wick franchise.

The anime series titled Lazarus will have action scenes designed by none other than the director of the John Wick franchise Chad Stahelski. With an interesting story pertaining to Lazarus and studio Mappa behind the animation, the upcoming anime is surely something fans will look forward to. There has been no release date announced yet.

The live-action Cowboy Bebop is available to stream on Netflix in the U.S.


Source: Slash Film


Written by Visarg Acharya

Articles Published: 2185

Visarg Acharya, Associate Content Writer, has been heavily involved in movies, series, and history. Having an experience of 2 years in the field of content writing, Visarg is a seasoned writer. Having a degree in Physics, Visarg Acharya has published a dissertation alongside a plethora of poems and short stories along the way.