Laurence Fishburne wasn’t completely feeling The Matrix Resurrections.
The Jasmine Brand reports that Fishburne, who starred in the original Matrix films as Neo’s grandmaster Morpheus, said he did watch the fourth installment of the franchise, but felt it was neither here nor there.
"It wasn't as bad as I thought it would be. And it wasn't as good as I hoped it would be," he said. "But I thought Carrie-Anne [Moss] and Keanu [Reeves] really did their thing. Yeah, that's what I thought."
Fans of the franchise were surprised when Fishburne wasn’t asked to return to the franchise once The Matrix Resurrections was greenlit. Back in 2020, Fishburne told New York Magazine “I have not been invited. Maybe that will make me write another play. I wish them well. I hope it’s great.”
Yahya Abdul-Mateen II played a different iteration of Morpheus in the fourth film, but fans wanted to know why Morpheus had to be recast.
At the time of Abdul-Mateen II being revealed as the newest Morpheus, entertainment writer Richard Newby wrote on Twitter, “Pretty bummed Laurence Fishburne isn’t in the new Matrix. There will probably be an explanation and it seems like Yahya Abdul-Mateen II is playing a new iteration of Morpheus. But Fishburne is my favorite part of that OG series. The fact he wasn’t contacted at all makes me sad.”
Abdul-Mateen talked with Shadow and Act about taking on the iconic character in 2021, saying that his version of Morpheus is going through a path of self-discovery, much like what Abdul-Mateen went through while performing in the film.
“Sometimes in order to get real change you have to really thrust yourself into that change, you have to make a complete 180 or you have to really just jump forward,” he said. “I think that the way that Morpheus reintroduced himself to the world, in that gold suit or just by coming out with the colors and making a bold physical fashion statement, was his way of saying that his is my rebirth.”