He is one of the highest-paid actors in Hollywood but he never finished school. He went through a traumatic time, but has moved on from it.
The Matrix actor Keanu Reeves is known for his kindness, generosity, and good looks. He has been through a lot of hardship in life and he learned to handle adversity from a young age. He is one of the actors who never got to finish high school but it never stopped him from being successful. In fact, he is one of the highest-paid actors in Hollywood.
The Speed actor was born to his British mother, Patricia, who was a casino showgirl, in Beirut. She married his Chinese-Hawaiian father, Samuel Nowlin Reeves, with whom he doesn't have a good relationship because the father had abandoned the family a few years later, according to Daily Mail. His mother traveled the world with him and his two sisters, eventually settling down in Toronto. Growing up, he and his sisters had a few stepfathers, one of whom even helped kickstart his career when he was just 20.
"I stayed with my stepfather in his guest bedroom; he was a writer and director. Then I made some friends and moved into an apartment. I’ve had a vagabond life," said he.
By the age of 20, Reeves had been out of his home for three years already and out of school for four years as he was kicked out.
"It was difficult. I went to four different high schools in five years. I was OK academically, good at English and creative writing. I was on the chess team," he said. However, he was bad at maths and science. He excelled at basketball, baseball and as an ice-hockey goalie. His acting talent shone through at a young age and he got a place at a prestigious performing-arts school. Instead of that experience shaping his life positively, it became a traumatic one.
"It was a very small school and I guess I didn’t fit in. I had conflicts and run-ins with the staff. The principal and I didn’t see eye to eye. I was one of those "Why?" kids – I asked too many questions about everything. I couldn’t stop even if it got me into trouble. I wanted my autonomy, and if you wanted to impose something on me, then you and I would have a problem," he said.
Instead of trying to understand the young man, the institution chose to expel him instead. "It’s a terrible letter to receive, saying you can’t come back to school next year. Getting asked to leave was very upsetting," Reeves said.
It became the driving force that led to his success and stardom. At the age of 17, he started taking night-school drama class in Toronto "just because it seemed like the thing to do," he told a news outlet, whoaisnotme. "I worked at some Stanislavsky stuff and I was playing around with sense memory. I started crashing auditions and then I got some jobs and joined the community theater. Then I got an agent," he said.
He worked in Canada for a while before deciding to move to Los Angeles. He just had his "dumpy 1969 Volvo", which he drove to L.A. with only $3,000. Once he got there, he "proceeded to go into the darkness -- the darkness that is L.A."
The actor has made a name for himself globally but not before he had his fair share of duds. Today, he earns enough that he can just give away a $100 million to his film crew. In the end, he had the last laugh for getting expelled. "I did. Ironic, isn’t it?"