American actor Keanu Reeves made a surprise appearance in a Ukrainian textbook.

A 10th grade history textbook used the famous 1932 photo “Lunch Atop a Skyscraper” to illustrate a chapter on the U.S. in the interwar period. But the book mistakenly used a photoshopped version of the photo that added Reeves as the 12th worker lunching on a crossbeam some 260 meters above the ground.

The image combines the “Sad Keanu” meme craze, which started when a paparazzi photo of Reeves eating a sandwich on a park bench went viral in 2010, with memes that provide “evidence” that the actor is immortal by photoshopping him into various photos.

The textbook was published in 2018 and was in circulation for two years before someone spotted an odd figure in the famous photo.

Spot the difference (hint, it’s easy).

The author of the textbook and the publishing house couldn’t agree on whether it was a mistake or an Easter egg.


Iryna Krasutska, head of the Orion publishing house that printed the book, told the Kyiv Post on Feb. 5 that the image was a mistake made during the designing of the book.

However, Ihor Shchupak, a history professor who authored the textbook, claimed that the photoshopped image was put in the book intentionally. He said he wanted to check how carefully students read textbooks.

“When the designer who worked with me on the book’s illustrations showed me that photo with Keanu Reeves, I didn’t notice that small detail at first,” he wrote on Facebook after the photoshopped photo was noticed and widely reported in Ukraine. “But when I understood the meme, I decided to keep it.”

He said that he tried to make his textbooks more interactive and appealing for modern children who “don’t read much but prefer pictures.”

Some commentators weren’t convinced by the explanation and argued it was inappropriate to use fake images in a textbook for schoolchildren.

Others joked that it proves Reeves is immortal – a long-running joke based on Reeves allegedly unchanging looks. A website called “Keanu Is Immortal” collects “evidence” – historical photos and paintings that show people who look like the actor.

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