Filming for 'The Matrix' sequel to bring helicopters, stunt drivers, pyrotechnics to downtown SF

Photo: The Matrix/Facebook 
By Alisa Scerrato - Published on January 23, 2020.

Next month, the much-anticipated fourth installment in "The Matrix" series will begin filming in and around San Francisco’s Financial District.

While the film is being produced by Warner Bros. under the moniker "Project Ice Cream,” several sources confirmed that it is indeed the fourth "Matrix" film. Filming in the FiDi will begin on Feb. 9, and will last for approximately three weeks.

It will also be very noticeable: according to the San Francisco Film Commission, the production will involve precision driving and crash stunts, simulated gunfire, helicopters flying less than 500 feet from the ground, pyrotechnics and smoke. Unmanned aerial cameras will fly around to capture it all.

Photo: Courtesy of SF Film Commission

But don't expect any noisy days at the office — production will largely occur overnight, between 10 p.m. and 7 a.m., and will center on Wednesdays through Sundays, to minimize weekday disruption. Any helicopter action will wrap up by midnight. 

The production will bring street closures in a wide swath of the FiDi, from Drumm to Grant streets heading east-west and from Market Street as far north as Clay Street. Market Street itself won't be affected, and to minimize disruption to traffic, street closures will end at 5 a.m. 

A major scene will be filmed along Sansome Street on Thursday, February 27 and Friday, February 28. During this time, the ramp will be closed and access to and from the garage will be via the Battery Street ramp.

Image/Anonymous Tipster

While there isn't much information about the new "Matrix," we do know that Keanu Reeves and Carrie-Anne Moss will be reprising their original roles as Neo and Trinity, last seen in 2003's "The Matrix Revolutions." Neil Patrick Harris and Yahya Abdul-Mateen II (of HBO's "Watchmen") will co-star. The film is set to be released in May 2021. 

Lana Wachowski, co-director of the original films, is sole director of the new installment. (Her sister and longtime co-director, Lilly, will not be involved.) The Wachowskis are no strangers to San Francisco, having filmed large swaths of their Netflix series "Sense8" here.

Reeves also recently appeared in another SF-set film: Netflix's "Always Be My Maybe," in which he played himself, rivaling Randall Park's Marcus for the affections of Ali Wong's Sasha. While some of the film was shot in Vancouver, Reeves' scenes were shot over four days in SF, according to Indiewire.

Keanu Reeves' scene in "Always Be My Maybe." | Video: Netflix

Reeves may have already been doing some additional "Matrix" filming in the Bay Area: earlier this month, he was spotted eating an ice cream cone outside of a Baskin-Robbins in Alameda, which was captured on video by a fan. (It's possible that the "Project Ice Cream" moniker may be a nod to the incident.)

If you're looking to be part of the "Matrix" action (and are willing to stay up all night), the production is casting background actors in SF. Producers are seeking both men and women, age 18 and older.

For questions or any other information about the filming, contact Adobe Pictures at (415) 322-3352 or [email protected]. You can also phone the SF Film Commission at (415) 554-6241.

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