The cast and crew of The Matrix 4 held a wrap party in Berlin, disguised as a film shoot to get around German COVID-19 laws, reports say.
The film, currently set for an April 2022 release, wrapped up filming at the Babelsberg studios just outside Berlin this week.
German newspaper Bild reports (via the Guardian) that producers Lana and Lilly Wachowski organised a party at the studios on Wednesday (November 11), disguised as a film shoot codenamed ‘Icecream Teamevent’.
The report says approximately 200 people attended the party, including star Keanu Reeves, with guests invited as “film extras”. Coronavirus rules in Berlin currently allow for 50-capacity events, with any events exceeding this having “to be registered in advance along with the submission of a ‘hygiene concept’ that has to be approved by authorities.” The report says that an authorised film shoot for The Matrix 4 would be allowed to take place under these rules.
Babelsberg Studios spokesperson Bianca Markarewicz said that producers for the film told the studios that they were shooting extra footage for a “celebration scene” which they largely filmed earlier this summer.
“The hygiene regulations were complied with,” she added. “The production team consciously put this shoot with its many participants, right at the end of the filming.”
However, an attendee at the party told Bild that the event seemed more like a party, with nobody actually filming the events.
“No directorial instructions were given, there was no clapperboard, and no one was filming,” the attendee said. “The mood was exuberant. Everyone was given a corona PCR test in advance. Everyone needed to come wearing a mask, but many people didn’t wear them as the party wore on.”
A spokesperson for the city of Berlin also told the Guardian that “no event was announced to us,” adding: “There were ongoing discussions between the health authority and the studios on the topic of infection protection during filming.”
In a recent interview, The Matrix 4 star Jessica Henwick said she believes the new film will “change the industry”.
“Lana is doing some really interesting things on a technical level in the same way that you know, she created a style back then,” Henwick said. “I think she’s going to change the industry again with this film. There’s some camera rigs that I’ve never seen before that we’re using. That’s probably all I can say for that.”
The new teaser comes after Keanu Reeves described the film as an “inspiring love story”.
The Matrix 4 is currently set for release in April 2022, having faced delays in production during the coronavirus crisis. Prior to the shutdown, Reeves was spotted filming as Neo in San Francisco’s Chinatown.
Get all the details on everything we know so far about The Matrix 4 here.