Chinese streamers remove Keanu Reeves movies over his support for Tibet

Keanu Reeves
(Image credit: Sam Santos/Getty Images for Warner Bros. Pictures Canada)

Keanu Reeves' movies have reportedly vanished from Chinese streaming platforms over the actor's support for Tibet.

Streaming platforms in China have removed "the vast majority" of Reeves' films, including The Matrix and Bill & Ted's Excellent Adventure, apparently in response to his involvement with a pro-Tibet benefit concert, the Los Angeles Times reports.

In January, Reeves faced backlash in China after it was announced that he would headline a benefit held by Tibet House, a nonprofit founded by supporters of the Dalai Lama that Chinese authorities have labeled "a separatist organization advocating for Tibetan independence," according to The Hollywood Reporter.

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As of this week, not only have most of Reeves' films been removed from Chinese streaming services, but search results for his name were also wiped, according to the Los Angeles Times. A rare Reeves film that wasn't removed was Toy Story 4, which features the actor in a voice role, though his name reportedly was excluded from the credits.

Reeves' latest film, The Matrix Resurrections, opened in China in January, even though many recent Hollywood films have not received theatrical releases there, but it bombed with a $7.5 million debut. Reeves has had plenty of fans in China, though, and in 2013, he made his directorial debut with a U.S.-China co-production, Man of Tai Chi.

Separately, reports in November revealed an episode of The Simpsons referencing Tiananmen Square wasn't available in China, and in February, episodes of Friends were censored to remove a gay storyline. John Cena received backlash there for referring to Taiwan as a country. He quickly apologized, saying he "made a mistake" and that "I love and respect China and Chinese people," but he drew criticism in the United States for "groveling to China."

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Brendan Morrow

Brendan is a staff writer at The Week. A graduate of Hofstra University with a degree in journalism, he also writes about horror films for Bloody Disgusting and has previously contributed to The Cheat Sheet, Heavy, WhatCulture, and more. He lives in New York City surrounded by Star Wars posters.