The Matrix Resurrections Writer Says It's Not A Sequel

"What is the Matrix?" It's the question that drove Neo (Keanu Reeves) twenty years ago, and it's the big meaning-of-life question that drives us all. But a better question for 2021 might be, "What is 'The Matrix Resurrections?'"

The upcoming sequel, the fourth live-action film in "The Matrix" series, is only about a month away, but aside from a tantalizing first trailer, it's been shrouded in secrecy. Is it a reboot? A sequel? What is "The Matrix Resurrections?"

One thing it's not is a film co-directed and co-written by the Wachowskis, like the first three "Matrix" films were. Earlier this year Lilly Wachowski explained that she didn't return to work on the sequel because, between coming out as a trans woman in 2016 and losing both her parents in the space of five weeks, "the idea of going backwards" to a movie made before that upheaval in her life was "expressly unappealing." In her place, director Lana Wachowski has brought in David Mitchell and Aleksandar Hemon as co-writers. Mitchell is the author of "Cloud Atlas," which the Wachowskis adapted into a film that still remains a personal favorite of Tom Hanks, who starred in it.

A new interview with Mitchell in the Greek newspaper To Vima sheds some further light on what "The Matrix Resurrections" is not. And according to him, it's not a sequel. There may also be a deeper reason why we see Neo sitting down in a therapist's office, since the film's genesis came about as a means of coping with loss.

The Matrix Resurrections Is 'Something Autonomous'

Showbiz CheatSheet has an English translation of Mitchell's interview via a Redditor. In it, he says that he has already seen "The Matrix Resurrections." He elaborated:

"I saw the film in Berlin in September. It's really good. I cannot tell you what this film is about, but I could explain what it is not. It's certainly not yet one more sequel, but something autonomous that contains however the three "Matrix" [movies] that preceded [it] in a really ingenious way. It's a very beautiful and weird creation. It also achieves a couple of things that we do not see in action films, meaning it subverts the rules of blockbusters."

This sounds more like a reboot, yet "The Matrix Resurrections" has an older Reeves and Carrie-Anne Moss playing the same characters (or different versions of them), and Mitchell's suggestion that the film "subverts the rules of blockbusters" positions it as something that doesn't fit neatly into the usual categorizations.

Mitchell also confirmed what earlier reports seemed to indicate: that the development of "The Matrix Resurrections" was tied to death of the Wachowskis' parents. He explained that he came to be involved in the project because, "Their parents died a few years ago in a short period of time of a few months from each other and Lana in her grief had an idea for a new Matrix."

"The Matrix Resurrections" is in theaters and on HBO Max on December 22, 2021.