Keanu Reeves’s Film Contract Bans AI and Deepfake Technology

Keanue Reeves

Keane Reeves has weighed in on artificial intelligence (AI) and deepfakes making it clear that he is not a fan of the technology, describing it as “scary.”

In an interview with Wired on Tuesday, Reeves revealed that he has a clause in every one of his film contracts that bans studios from digitally editing his performances.

The actor explains that he has been using the contract clause for years and it prevents his acting from being digitally manipulated without his explicit permission.

“Yeah, digitally. I don’t mind if someone takes a blink out during an edit,” Reeves tells Wired.

“But early on, in the early 2000s, or it might have been the 90s, I had a performance changed. They added a tear to my face, and I was just like, ‘Huh?!’ It was like, I don’t even have to be here.”


For Reeves, another company being able to control an actor’s likeness using deepfake technology makes him fearful.

“What’s frustrating about that is you lose your agency. When you give a performance in a film, you know you’re going to be edited, but you’re participating in that,” the actor says.

“If you go into deepfake land, it has none of your points of view. That’s scary. It’s going to be interesting to see how humans deal with these technologies.”

Reeves points out that society is already consuming AI-generated art and that will have implications for humans in the future.

“People are growing up with these tools: We’re listening to music already that’s made by AI in the style of Nirvana, there’s NFT digital art,” Reeves says. “It’s cool, like, Look what the cute machines can make!”

“But there’s a corporatocracy behind it that’s looking to control those things. Culturally, socially, we’re gonna be confronted by the value of real, or the non-value. And then what’s going to be pushed on us? What’s going to be presented to us?”

The Rise of Deepfakes in Hollywood

Reeves is not the first actor to publically criticize deepfake technology.

In January, Robert Pattinson called out the “terrifying” deepfake of himself on social media — which has over one million followers.

Pattinson says that the strikingly realistic deepfake of him — which posts videos as @unreal_robert on TikTok — is so convincing that it has led him to question the future of his career.

Nonetheless, the entertainment industry has been increasingly turning to AI software. Last year, filmmakers used deep fake technology to visually dub the action-thriller Fall when they were asked to remove the profanities from the film but did not have the budget to reshoot scenes.

Image credits: Header photo licensed via Depositphotos.