Fortnite has an official John Wick skin, but before it arrived, Keanu Reeves seemed to be in the game in the form of a Season 3 battle pass skin called the Reaper. The Reaper wasn’t officially Reeves or his action movie character, but it looked a lot like him. During today’s E3 Coliseum, Epic creative director Donald Mustard said the resemblance wasn’t intentional.
Mustard took the stage today with Geoff Keighley and Chad Stahelski, the director of the movie John Wick Chapter 3: Parabellum. The panel, titled “Storytelling Across Screens,” was in part about Epic bringing John Wick to Fortnite through an official skin and a John Wick-themed limited-time mode, Wick’s Bounty. Stahelski said the Epic team approached him after John Wick 2, looking for a collaboration. Mustard followed up to say that the Reaper’s resemblance to Keanu Reeves was not only unintentional, but took Reeves by surprise.
I happened to end up in a spot where Keanu and I were together, talking about some stuff, and we were like “What if, what if this kinda made sense?” And [Keanu] was into it, especially because we have this character in Fortnite called The Reaper which kinda—it wasn’t intentional! For me, we were just trying to, like, let’s just make this super awesome The Man In Black. But [Keanu] was starting to have all these kids come up to him, all these teenagers on the street, and they weren’t doing the normal “Oh you’re Neo, oh you’re Wick.” They were doing, “Fortnite guy! Fortnite guy!” [Keanu]’s like “What is this Fortnite thing?” And then of course he’s like, “That doesn’t look like me, that’s not me,” and he’s like, “We gotta do it right.” So I think that’s when we [gestures to Stahelski] met...It just felt inevitable and made a lot of sense that we would do something together.
I’ll be honest: I don’t know if I buy it, but I do want to know more about why Keanu Reeves and Donald Mustard were hanging out. You can watch the explanation (and the rest of the panel) in the video below.