Keanu Reeves’ tremendous generosity is well documented, but the action movie star isn’t against taking a financial hit for his own benefit. While working on the 1997 thriller movie The Devil’s Advocate – about a lawyer (Reeves) who ends up working for the Devil – Reeves took a considerable pay cut to secure his co-star Al Pacino.
According to accounts from the time (via ABC News), the production team wanted Pacino to play John Milton, aka Satan, in the film but couldn’t find the money in their budget. Not wanting the film to suffer (and wishing to star opposite one of the greatest living actors), Reeves offered to give up millions of dollars so they could pay Pacino.
While Devil’s Advocate opened to mostly milquetoast reviews, critics agreed that Pacino brought something unique to the role of Milton. No one does bombast quite like Pacino. Whether he’s playing humanity’s greatest spiritual enemy or selling dunkaccino’s, he always gives it his all. In fact, Yahoo Movies named Devil’s Advocate Pacino’s most underrated performance.
The Devil’s Advocate isn’t the only time Reeves offered to pay for a co-star out of his own pocket. The John Wick star reportedly took a 90% pay cut so he could work with Gene Hackman on the 2000 drama movie The Replacements.
Reeves is still a generous soul, buying the John Wick stunt team ludicrously expensive watches and donating unspecified sums to various charities.
If you love Al Pacino, check out our list of the best movies; it’s an offer you can’t refuse.