Q: Did Keanu Reeves say that President Donald Trump is a role model?
A: No. That’s a made-up quote that has been attributed to at least two other actors.
Keanu Reeves doesn’t say much publicly about politics. He has long had a reputation for being private.
So, the actor definitely didn’t say: “For Me, Trump Is The Symbol Of A Successful Man And A Role Model For Every Young American, Something That Our Nation Was Looking For Years. I Don’t Think That America Will Again Have A Leader Like Him.” That’s from a headline on more than a dozen dubious websites that have published a story claiming that he did.
The story has been shared more than 3,000 times on Facebook, and users of the social media site have flagged it as potentially false. It is.
We found no record of Reeves making any public statement about President Donald Trump, and the rest of the story is a barely modified version of a profile of Reeves that ran in the Telegraph, a British newspaper, while he was promoting his 2014 movie, “John Wick.” The article looks back at Reeves’ career, and says nothing about Trump or politics.
Many of the sites that ran the story with the made-up quote also included a video of a 2014 interview with Reeves on Uruguayan television in which he talks about that same film and his travel preferences. Reeves doesn’t mention Trump in the segment, which aired before Trump was a candidate for president.
False quotes like this one can take on a life of their own, too, as illustrated by yet another dubious website that inserted the quote attributed to Reeves into a story about Trump earlier this month.
Editor’s note: FactCheck.org is one of several organizations working with Facebook to help identify and label false stories flagged by readers on the social media network.
Heath, Chris. “The Quiet Man: The Riddle of Keanu Reeves.” Rolling Stone. 31 Aug 2000.
“Actor Keanu Reeves: ‘For Me Trump Is The Symbol Of A Successful Man And A Role Model For Every Young American, Something That Our Nation Was Looking For Years.I Don’t Think That America Will Again Have A Leader Like Him,’ Do You Support Him?” PoliceNews.info. 6 Mar 2018.
Collin, Robbie. “Keanu Reeves: ‘I felt like I was fighting for my life.'” The Telegraph. 9 Apr 2015.
Canal 7 Punta del Este. Keanu Reeves interview. Youtube. 5 Feb 2014.
Kiely, Eugene, and Robertson, Lori. “How to Spot Fake News.” FactCheck.org. 18 Nov 2016.
Clayton, Jim. “Trump Keeps Improving America While Critics Keep Attacking Him.” Conservativedailynews.com. 1 Mar 2018.