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The Surprising Action Movie Halle Berry Regrets Passing On

The last chapter of "John Wick" sees Keanu Reeves' calm and cold-blooded killer team up with a character that's packing just as much firepower as our hero, along with two loyal furry friends at her side. "John Wick: Chapter 3 – Parabellum" gives us Halle Berry's introduction to the franchise as Sofia, a woman from John's past who is indebted to the hero, sparking a great bit of chemistry between the on-screen stars. It also showcases Berry's incredible knack for action, which the Oscar-winning actress looks to have focused on for her successful new Netflix film, "Bruised."

No stranger to taking a tumble under action-packed circumstances over the years, there was one particular role that Berry was close to taking but unfortunately decided to turn down. Interestingly, had she accepted the gig, it would've seen her and Reeves on-screen together a lot sooner, in a film that sent the latter's career shooting into the stratosphere long before he stopped bullets in "The Matrix" or donned Wick's iconic suit. 

Halle Berry almost picked up Speed

In an interview with Entertainment Tonight in 2019, Halle Berry revealed that she turned down a role opposite Keanu Reeves in the 1994 classic, "Speed," which ultimately went to Sandra Bullock. Attending the chat with Reeves, Berry opened up about what she deemed a dumb move, saying, "I don't know if you know this, but I was offered 'Speed' before Sandra Bullock. I stupidly said no. But in my defense, when I read the script the bus didn't leave the parking lot." 

While it begs the question of if the film would've really earned the title of "Speed" given Berry's original pitch (would "Laps" be more sufficient?), she was understandably confused when she finally saw the film. "I was like no, no, no, no. Then I see the movie and I'm like, arrrrghh," Berry recalled. "They were offering me the parking lot version." Interestingly, the innocent civilian caught in the chaos is a character Berry would later get to try in a similar film to "Speed." 

In 1996, she starred in "Executive Decision" opposite Kurt Russell and Steven Seagal as a flight attendant named Jean caught in a hostage takeover. Much like Bullock's "Speed" character, Jean helps Russell's hero win back the aircraft from the terrorists who take it over, even helping land the plane in the final act. While not as beloved as Reeves' action movie, it was one of Berry's earliest on-screen dices with death before teaming up with Reeves for "John Wick" over 20 years later.