Laurence Fishburne Explains Why He Won’t Appear in ‘The Matrix 4’

“I wish them well. I hope it’s great,” Fishburne said

Laurence Fishburne will not take another trip down the rabbit hole. The actor told New York Magazine that he “has not been invited” to reprise his iconic role in Lana Wachowski’s “The Matrix” sequel.

“I have not been invited. Maybe that will make me write another play. I wish them well. I hope it’s great,” Fishburne told the publication.

Of his role as Morpheus in the original “The Matrix” trilogy, Fishburne said: “It is probably the role that I’ll be best remembered for, which is great; it’s not the only thing I’ll be remembered for, which is better. What I get with him is I’ve got Darth Vader in this hand, and I’ve got Obi-Wan in that hand. I’ve got Bruce Lee, I’ve got Muhammad Ali shuffled in there, and I’ve got kung fu.”

The plot, and details of the still-untitled sequel have been kept under wraps, but it’s expected to continue from the original trilogy. It’s unclear where it would pick up, but one reason Fishburne’s red pill, blue pill wielding character wouldn’t appear in “The Matrix 4” might be because he dies of gunshot wounds in “The Matrix Online,” a multiplayer online role-playing game that the Wachowskis blessed as a continuation of the films’ storyline. Though popular belief suggests that his death was faked.

Lana Wachowski is directing “The Matrix” sequel from a script she penned with Aleksandar Hemon (“Sense8”) and David Mitchell (“Sense8”). Keanu Reeves, Carrie-Anne Moss and Jada Pinkett-Smith are reprising their roles from the original trilogy, and the film has added big names such as Jonathan Groff, Priyanka Chopra, Yahya Abdul-Mateen II, and Neil Patrick Harris.

In June, as a result of delays from the coronavirus shutdown, Warner Bros. said it was halting the 2021 release of the film, pushing it to spring 2022.

The three previous films in the franchise — “The Matrix” from 1999, “The Matrix Reloaded” and “The Matrix Revolutions,” both from 2003 – have earned more than $1.6 billion at the global box office and were all top-10 domestic hits in their respective years of release.

“It’s the old story in a modern context,” Fishburne said of “The Matrix.” “It’s the One, the Christ, the Buddha, the Godhead, the fully realized being told through the digital age.”