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Laurence Fishburne Speech: Keanu Reeves

Learn English with Laurence Fishburne. A heartfelt speech was delivered by Legendary actor Laurence Fishburne, best known for his role as Morpheus in the 1999 science fiction film The Matrix, praising Keanu Reeves career and achievements at hand and footprint ceremony on May 14, 2019, at the TCL Chinese Theater in Los Angeles, California, USA. Laurence John Fishburne III is an American actor, playwright, producer, screenwriter, and film director. He has been critically hailed for his forceful, militant, and authoritative characters in his films. In this speech, he also quotes: “You have touched our hearts, and you have soothed our soul, like your name, the cool breeze, come down from the mountain. You have done this with your talent and your passion and your presence throughout the years. I wish you good health, happiness, success in all your future endeavors. May all your dreams come true my brother; I love you.” Watch with big English.

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Laurence Fishburne Quote:

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“Never confuse the truth with the opinion of the masses.” Laurence Fishburne

Laurence Fishburne – FULL TRANSCRIPT:

“Hello. Hello. So, nice to be here with you all today. Hi guys. I got some words here. It’s really, really lovely to be here with you all. This is, this is a real honor and a real treat for me. So, we’re here to celebrate the artistry and the work of Mr. Keanu Reeves.

When I heard that he was getting this honor, I was really excited. I was like, oh my God, this is great. I called him up and I was like, is that happening? He was like, yeah, it’s happening. I was like, so are you excited? And he was like, yeah, I’m excited. I’m excited, but I’m more nervous.

Which I kind of get, because I’m kind of nervous. I got to talk about Keanu like he’s not here. And he’s not really into that kind of thing. But like most of the people that are here, those of you that know Keanu a little bit, know that he’s a really private guy. You know, after being in the public eye for so many years, he has somehow managed to maintain more than a little bit of mystery, which is very cool.

So, I was trying to think about what I could say about him here and now that would make sense and why it’s fitting and proper for him to be getting the Ceremony of Summit. I mean, if you got to have your hands and feet in cement, this is the way to do it.

So, first of all, I could start by saying, you know, I don’t know, 20 some odd years ago he was named as one of the 50 most beautiful people in the world. Okay, I could tell you that, you know, the UK Empire Movie magazine named him as one of the greatest movie stars of all time. But really what I’d like to start with is one of his finest qualities, which is his humility.

He has worked tirelessly for like decades and he’s enjoyed great success. He’s had great failures. He’s had great tragedy. He’s had great triumph. And in all of that, he has never lost sight of the fact of something that he said to me. You once said to me Keanu, that you know that this could all go away tomorrow. And this is one of the reasons why I tell people whenever they ask me what you’re like, I always tell people that Keanu is one of the smartest and most intelligent men that I have ever met.

He is a deeply sensitive and thoughtful person, and he is also a courageous and passionate artist. So, my first encounter with Keanu was not unlike probably many of you. I first encountered him in a film called ‘River’s Edge’ back in the 80s. And when I watched that movie, yeah, we can clap for that. We can clap for that.

I was watching that movie and I thought, who the f*ck is this kid? Like he was so natural. So unaffected. He was so real. He was so authentic and he was open and vulnerable, so open and vulnerable that you really couldn’t take your eyes off him. And he was also kind of unpredictable and unconventional, so much so that you thought that under the right circumstances, he might be a little dangerous.

So, some people call that talent. Some people call that relationship with the camera. Some people call that star quality. Some people just call IT, whatever it is. Keanu has it. You can’t buy it. You can’t fake it. You can’t manufacture it. You either have it or you don’t.

There’s a movie that kind of explains what I’m talking about. There’s this movie called ‘A River Runs Through It.’ That was directed by Robert Redford, I think. And it’s about these two brothers. One’s good. One’s bad. It’s Brad Pitt and Chraig Schaeffer. And Craig Schaeffer’s character is explaining what it’s like to be to watch his brother, who’s played by Brad.

And basically, he says, his brother is one of those people who’s kind of like a bright burning star and all of us kind of get to watch them as they kind of burn their way across the cosmos and dazzle us with their brilliance. And I know Keanu wouldn’t probably agree with me about that, but I think for myself and for many people, you are one of those beings.

When Keanu’s on the screen, it’s like he’s inviting you into his interior world, but at the same time, he’s keeping you at a distance. He’s kind of doing this. Come on up, come on now. Stay away. No, no, come, come, come, come closer. No, no, stay over there. No, really, really. I want to show you. No, no, no, no, no. Stay over there. It’s really, really effective.

He almost dares you to come along with him as he explores the depths of these characters in the human condition. And it’s really remarkable. His work is both subtle and nuanced, and earnest. He doesn’t try to impress us. He simply tries to reveal the hidden truth that lie within all of us. And he has been on a very long, slow and brilliant burn for some 40 odd years now.

He has given us some wonderful, interesting, funny, thoughtful, and moving performances in films like Point Break, the Bill and Ted movies, Bill and Ted’s three is coming dudes. I Love You to Death, My Own Private Idaho, which is one of my favorite performances of yours Keanu. Much Ado About Nothing, A Walk in The Clouds, another one of my favorite performances.

Something’s Got to Give, Johnny Mnemonic, The Last Time I Committed Suicide, and Little Buddha, which I have to say your work in that film is beyond category, bro. The Gift, Feeling Minnesota, Speed, Thumbsucker, Scanner Darkly, Henry’s Crime, Man of Tai Chi. Yes. He would come into my house and explain to me what they were going to make. For like 10 years, you told me those stories. It was fantastic. And you got it done.

And then of course, there’s the Matrix trilogy. Yeah. The first movie to deliver on what comic books promised. That’s right, ladies and gentlemen. Without the Matrix films, the Marvel Cinematic Universe would not be what it is today. It’s hard to believe that it was 20 years ago that The Matrix was released.

And in that time Keanu, you have grown deeper. You ride a little bit lower in the saddle. You’ve matured. But unlike many of us, you appear not to have aged. Perhaps the rumors about you being immortal are true. Yes, the dragon guards his secrets closely. And then just when no one was looking, you and these two come up with this killer cinematic fight fest called John Wick.

And you have given us one of the most satisfying bad-ass motherf*ckers on screen in generations. So, I’m going to close by telling you that I was coming through an airport a couple of weeks ago. I saw the GQ magazine that Keanu was on the cover of, and I picked it up hoping that I would learn something that I didn’t know about him. Because I wanted to be prepared because I knew I was going to speak. And I read the interview several times. I was hoping I would find something that I could add to my remarks here today.

I found nothing, not a goddam thing. However, it did make one thing very clear to me. And it’s like, you know, there’s only one Bogey. There’s only one Brando. There’s only one Denzel. There’s only one Marrow. There’s only one Share, right. There ain’t but one Keanu Reeves. Ain’t but one of them. God already put the best Keanu stuff he had into this one. And he ain’t making no more of that.

There are maybe 300 or so people who have had their hand prints and their footprints enshrine here. And now Keanu my brother, you joined this group of talented and extraordinary people. People like Tom Mix from the early days and Bob Hope and Betty Davis and Doris Day who left us yesterday, God rest her soul. People like Sandy Bullock and Denzo and Al Pachino, Kenneth Brenna, Francis, Morgan Freeman, and the late Anthony Quinn, all of whom you worked with and were your friends, are your friends.

All of these people have enriched our lives with their artistry. And you have done this as well. And you have done it with joy and with grace and courage. And on behalf of everyone gathered here and those who love you, I say, thank you.

Thank you, Sir. You may or may not know it, but you have helped us to free our minds. You have touched our hearts, and you have soothed our soul, like your name, the cool breeze, come down from the mountain. You have done this with your talent and your passion and your presence throughout the years. I wish you good health, happiness, success in all your future endeavors. May all your dreams come true my brother; I love you.”[/read]

Laurence Fishburne