Xbox E3 2019: Microsoft Went To Extreme Lengths To Keep Keanu Reeves A Secret At Its Press Conference

Amazingly, it didn't leak.


The appearance of Keanu Reeves at the Microsoft Xbox E3 2019 briefing where he announced the release date for Cyberpunk 2077 was unquestionably one of the memorable events of the entire show (at least so far). Now, it's revealed that Microsoft went to great lengths to ensure that the popular actor's appearance was kept a secret.

Xbox boss Phil Spencer explained to Variety that Microsoft used a stand-in for Reeves during rehearsals. Not only that, but Reeves was referred to with a codename. The report goes on to say that Reeves didn't set foot inside the Microsoft Theatre until the morning of his appearance.

Please use a html5 video capable browser to watch videos.
This video has an invalid file format.
Sorry, but you can't access this content!
Please enter your date of birth to view this video

By clicking 'enter', you agree to GameSpot's
Terms of Use and Privacy Policy

Now Playing: How Cyberpunk 2077 Got Keanu Onboard | E3 2019

Also in the interview, Spencer acknowledged that he wasn't sure how it would all go down. He said he's seen some celebrity endorsements fall flat over years. But after seeing a brief from developer CD Projekt Red--which had the idea for Reeves' appearance--Microsoft was convinced that it was going to be "very authentic," Spencer said.

CD Projekt Red spoke to GameSpot at E3 this week regarding how they got Reeves involved. They approached him about a year ago for the role, and the studio said the part he plays--Johnny Silverhand--would only work with Reeves. "It was always him or no one else for the role," CD Projekt Red's Miles Tost explained, adding that he was happy the news didn't leak.

Check out the video embedded above to learn more about how CD Projekt Red brought Keanu Reeves on board for Cyberpunk 2077. You can also read the GameSpot story linked below to learn more about the role Reeves plays in Cyberpunk 2077.

After years of development, Cyberpunk 2077 is finally releasing on April 16, 2020 across PlayStation 4, Xbox One, and PC.

More E3 news:

Watch live streams, videos, and more from GameSpot’s summer event. Check it out

Got a news tip or want to contact us directly? Email

Join the conversation
There are 4 comments about this story