The stunt experience Keanu Reeves picked up shooting The Matrix proved to be a negative factor when making the sequels - because he had to take on ever tougher tasks.

Reeves, who reprises his role as NEO in The Matrix Reloaded, admits it was a mistake for him to speak out about the stunts he was able to take on, because fight choreographer Yuen Wo Ping and director brothers ANDY and Larry Wachowski decided to work him even harder.

He says, "Because of the experience of the first one, I had some body memory. I could pick up choreography quicker and I knew where I was with the wire work. But once I said, 'Okay, I know how to do this,' Wo Ping would go, 'Well how about this?' and the brothers were like, 'And how about this?' and so on. It was backflips and cartwheels."

The end result left Reeves spending many evenings in ice baths.

He adds, "You're basically tearing micro muscle tissue every day. So you get inflammation. And I'm 38 years old. I'm not 22 and bouncing around."

12/05/2003 17:25