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Keanu Reeves Had Nothing But Praise For John Wick Co-Star Rina Sawayama

"John Wick: Chapter 4" has officially hit theaters and as hard as it might be to believe, the franchise still feels as fresh as it did when the original took the action movie world by storm almost a decade ago. As fans who've already seen the epic new film would surely attest, the set pieces and locales in "John Wick: Chapter 4" are as big, bold, and opulent as anything that has come before. But perhaps the biggest part of keeping the franchise fresh is infusing the action with new characters. The latest chapter has done this with aplomb thanks, in no small part, to the likes of Akira, who is played by pop-star Rina Sawayama. 

Not only does her character give Wick a run for his money, but Keanu Reeves himself has declared Sawayama's debut worth celebrating, with the star telling Entertainment Weekly, "I think she's amazing in the film." Playing the ass-kicking daughter of Osaka's Continental boss Shimazu Koji (Hiroyuki Sanada), Sawayama was able to make great use of her skills as a performer in her big-screen debut, and they did not go unnoticed by Reeves. 

Sawamaya had equally kind things to say about her John Wick co-star

Keanu Reeves went on to tell Entertainment Weekly he was impressed with the way Rina Sawayama threw herself into training for the film, specifically noting her experience as a dancer brought unexpected grace to Akira's fighting style. "She has a dance background," Reeves said, adding, "so she was really great with moving through space, and it was really great to see how she excelled, and also brought her character a flavor [to] how she fought." Reeves has, of course, spoken fondly of "John Wick" co-stars in the past. But his praise here no doubt means a little more for Sawayama as she's not just making her screen debut, but doing so on such an epic stage. And if you've seen her work in "John Wick: Chapter 4," you know the praise is well-earned.

To the surprise of exactly no one, Sawayama had equally glowing things to say of Hollywood good guy Reeves during her recent appearance on "Good Morning America." When the topic of her beloved co-star came up, she took the opportunity to gush. "He was so sweet ... just looking after me behind the scenes," Sawayama said, "He's not a very showy person." More importantly, the pop star-turned-actor said Reeves is refreshingly down to earth, noting, "He can turn off the celebrity ... I didn't feel intimidated at all." And that's perhaps the kindest thing one can say about a star of Keanu Reeves' stature.