Constantine Director Explains Why Keanu Didn’t Have A British Accent Or Blonde Hair

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It’s hard to imagine a world where the casting of Keanu Reeves would be met with criticism. But back in 2005 when Constantine came out, fans of the DC/Vertigo comic were less than pleased with two aspects of Reeves’ performance. The first was that he wasn’t going to be British and the second was that he would not be wearing the signature brown coat from the comics.

Folks seemed to get over it quickly, however. Despite a mixed critical reception, Constantine went on to make more than $230 million off of a $100 million budget. Not spectacular, but respectable considering the pic was rated R, the landscape of comic book movies at the time and a February release. The film obviously became a cult classic in the years since as well and Reeves, director Francis Lawrence and producer Akiva Goldsman came together for a reunion panel at Comic-Con@Home last weekend to reflect on it.

When talking about the look of the character, Lawrence remembers not even discussing whether they should stick to the comics, saying:

“We never talked about it,” he said. “I remember in costumes too the one other sort of big change for the Constantine characters was the coat. And we did try the Constantine coat and ended up with the black one…We wanted to do what was right for what we were doing.”

News flash: what works in a comic doesn’t necessarily work in a movie. They’re two different mediums. That’s always my answer whenever someone complains about adaptations from comics or books.

Besides, how distracting would it have been to see Reeves with blonde hair and an accent? He may be a pro at doing his own stunts, but accents are not his thing (see: Dracula). The choices the filmmakers ended up making were the right ones, too, as Constantine is a very stylish movie, with Reeves’ look resembling a mix between Mad Men and film noir.

But tell us, do you think they made the right decisions with the flick? As always, let us know down below.

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