Clint Eastwood

The ‘Matrix’ character inspired by Clint Eastwood

There’s a pretty wide stylistic gap between the kind of dusty jackets Clint Eastwood wore in the Sergio Leone Dollars trilogy and the sleek black flared leather coats donned by Keanu Reeves and Carrie-Anne Moss in the Matrix universe. Yet, even still, Eastwood became an unlikely source of inspiration for one particular character in the world of dystopian imprisonment and high-flying action.

Specifically, it was Eastwood’s antihero roles that would go on to inspire the cast and crew of The Matrix, with his iconic characters in such movies as Dirty HarryFor a Few Dollars More and The Good, the Bad and the Ugly being complex individuals who toed the line between good and evil. Inside one of most of his iconic characters, there was a shadowed insanity that could be switched on or off at will.

It was Carrie-Anne Moss, who plays the character of Trinity, who would see the inspiration in Eastwood’s performances, using his brooding intensity for her own role.

“I’ve never been interested in action movies,” Moss admitted in an interview with Esquire. “Definitely not interested in sci-fi. So when we were on location, I decided to watch Clint Eastwood. I hadn’t seen his movies since I was a kid and went with my dad and my brother”. The actor then extracted several parts of Eastwood’s performance that she loved and combined it with her own vision for Trinity.

Continuing, she added: “But I remembered how still he was. Still but full of strength. I knew I needed to tap into that because I’m not a very still person. And I knew the brothers really wanted that quiet intensity for Trinity. It’s about her eyes, her voice, the way she moves. Or doesn’t move. And I watched Clint and thought, ‘Okay, Trinity can be still and still very powerful.’”

After four movies, an animated anthology film and a couple of video games, Trinity remains one of the most enduring characters in the Matrix universe. A computer programmer and hacker who helps lead the rebellion against the machines, Trinity forms a close relationship with Neo and becomes one of the franchise’s most important characters alongside Laurence Fishburne’s Morpheus.

One thing fans of The Matrix would undoubtedly love to see in the franchise is a character directly inspired by Eastwood’s ‘man with no name’, roaming the desolate lands of Earth trying to help any isolated survivors.

Take a look at Trinity in action in The Matrix below.

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