Actress Ruby Rose is “so proud” of the minor head injury she received while fighting Keanu Reeves on the set of the new John Wick sequel.
Keanu reprises his role as a retired assassin in John Wick: Chapter 2, in which he is joined by new castmembers including Ruby, rapper/actor Common, and his The Matrix co-star Laurence Fishburne.
The Orange Is the New Black star shows off her fighting skills in the film, but the choreography for one onscreen battle with Keanu didn’t quite go to plan, and left Ruby nursing a bruised cheekbone.
“I got a little nick, which I was so proud of,” she smiled to E! News. “I got an elbow in the head by Keanu, which I will love forever.”
Explaining the scene in more detail to U.S. breakfast show Today, Ruby said, “In that scene, Keanu has to throw me over his shoulders… so when he threw me, I guess his elbow was out a little bit or my head was in the wrong place, and it was like a tiny nick.”
The minor injury required an ice pack to prevent swelling, but Ruby reveals she tried to play down the incident whenever Keanu passed her by onset.
“Anytime he came round, I had to put it (the ice pack) in another place…,” she confessed. “He was like, ‘Is that for your face?’, ‘No, it’s just my elbow, it’s fine.’ (Then it was), ‘Just my ankle, my lower back, definitely not my face!’ “
Ruby wasn’t the only castmate left battered and bruised from the action sequences – Common, who portrays one of the actress’ sidekicks, also needed a little rest after going up against Keanu’s killer character.
“I remember specifically (with) Keanu, I kept doing forearm block and forearm block in the same place and I was bruised up,” he told E!. “But I didn’t want to let him know.”
And the fight scenes weren’t easy on Keanu, either, who left the set each night “exhausted” and sore – but he insists the finished product makes all the onset beatings worth it.
“For me, it’s not just the action,” he said. “It’s the story. It’s the character. And I love doing it. So as long as I can do it, I will do it.”