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Kojima passed on a Keanu recommendation because he wanted Mads instead


At the Master Storyteller panel at San Diego Comic-Con 2019, Hideo Kojima revealed Keanu Reeves – who’s now starring in Cyberpunk 2077 – was originally recommended to him for Death Stranding, but the director insisted he wanted Mads Mikkelsen instead.

Kojima was also joined by film director, Nicolas Winding Refn, who plays the Death Stranding character, Heartman. They discussed their different approaches to storytelling, and Kojima opened up on why he prefers to work in games rather than movies, and says that regardless of whether his work gets critical acclaim or criticism “you think about it ten years later”.

“There’s no reason to create something that’s already there,” he said (thanks Kakai Chik via wccftech). “I want to create something that gives more inspiration to the world. Like Hollywood movies where some don’t live with you, people just digest and consume. What I do is make something that’s difficult to chow down when you digest my work.

“What happens when I release my game or when Nicolas releases a movie, we get criticism or praise. But you think about it ten years later, same as Bladerunner or 2001: Space Odyssey.”

When asked how development was going, Kojima replied with a simple “I’m still creating it”, but did note that “the easiest thing for [him] to do” when he’d parted company with Konami and established Kojima Productions as a standalone studio “would have been to make a game where everyone is on an island and shoots each other”.