Cyberpunk 2077 concept art shows what Johnny Silverhand looked like before Keanu Reeves

Cyberpunk 2077
(Image credit: CD Projekt Red)

Cyberpunk 2077's Johnny Silverhand oozes cool, but thanks to concept art which has emerged online, we now know what Samurai's lead singer looked like before Keanu Reeves came on board - and it's pretty different.

Images of Cyberpunk 2077 concept art has appeared on the ArtStation profile of Lea Leonowicz, concept artist and coordinator at CD Projekt Red, which shows how Johnny Silverhand was initially intended to look (via GamesRadar).

The original concept art for Silverhand seen the rebellious musician looking clean-shaven and more like a young Keith Richards than the grizzled ex-rocker that we see in the game. Check it out below:

Cyberpunk 2077

(Image credit: Lea Leonowicz/CD Projekt Red)

There are also a few different outfit styles that we see in the first sketches, which we never saw in the final game. Though some of these sketches do show him sporting the iconic Silverhand aviators, bulletproof vest and leather trousers we seen in the final iteration. 

Keanu brings the cool

Cyberpunk 2077

(Image credit: Lea Leonowicz/CD Projekt Red)

While there's no further information given on this concept artwork, it looks like these images were created before Keanu Reeves was cast as Johnny Silverhand in 2018. 

It looks like the general aesthetic of Silverhand remained largely unchanged, but we can definitely see how Keanu Reeves influenced the final character - bringing a much more gruff rock n' roll vibe to Silverhand.

It's interesting to see how the character developed over time, and imagine what could have been if someone else had taken on the role. But we would much rather have Keanu Reeves in our head than Keith Richards...

Vic Hood
Associate Editor, TechRadar Gaming

Vic is TechRadar Gaming's Associate Editor. An award-winning games journalist, Vic brings experience from IGN, Eurogamer and more to the TechRadar table. You may have even heard her on the radio or speaking on a panel. Not only is Vic passionate about games, but she's also an avid mental health advocate who has appeared on both panels and podcasts to discuss mental health awareness. Make sure to follow her on Twitter for more.