Ryan Reynolds, 44, is the new star of Hollywood. His talent to combine action, horror and independent dramas has gotten him to the highest ranking of the industry.
He sat with us during a virtual interview for his new movie Free Guy, where he plays a nice guy who strides through the violent and malevolent videogame world with a big smile and the ability to ultimately change this imaginary world. Ryan Reynolds is one of the most popular Canadian-American actors and producers.
He is best known for his acting in action and adventure movies such as the Deadpool series and the Green Lantern. Reynolds is a very talented personality, who can speak several languages as many canadians. He speaks English and French as his official language, but also speaks Italian, Spanish, and Irish.
Q: You are a chameleon playing all sorts of roles?
Ryan Reynolds: From ‘Deadpool’ I’m now a Blue Shirt Guy. Well, my default is pure trash on the inside. So this is slightly new to me. But I like the guy, he is a good guy
Q: Is true that you found inspiration in a little-known classic 1979 American satire?
RR: Yes, I like ‘Being There’ with Peter Sellers. That was my foothold in this world. There is something nice about a character who is innocent. He’s like a 4-year-old adult. It was fun about exploring everything there is to do.
Q: Do you like satires
RR: I love satires, but mostly book satires such as A Conference of Dunces written by John Kennedy Toole or Don Quixote. That is one of my favorites, that is the best buddy story ever written. Don Quixote is a book that I read constantly as you always find a new lesson.
Q: Is it true that you speak Spanish?
RR: Yes, I did shoot a movie in Spain, in the north east of Spain and I truly love it. Also I was one of the few who had the chance to eat in the restaurant Can Roca.
Q: Tell us about that experience in Barcelona?
RR: It was one of the best experiences of my life. (Takes his hand to the mouth and says) Delicious, spectacular. I will never forget having dinner in the kitchen of Can Roca.
Q: Ryan, you seem like a tightrope walker, you combine horror movies with action movies like Deadpool.
RR: I like movies, I like movies. Fame is sometimes difficult to understand because it ends up inventing an image of you that is not representing your reality, but I am not going to demonize it since I understand that it is a consequence of my work.
Q: Do you consider yourself an action hero?
RR: I don't want to be pigeonholed. I don't want to be the type who only plays action movies, or the type who does comedies, I want producers and directors to count on me for any character. Everyone tries to write their own destiny, make the right decisions, an artistic film can provide a great reward, even if no money is made from it. I try to combine commercial films with independent films, I want my career to be long.
Q: How do you feel about being considered a sex symbol by magazines?
RR: It is an illusion created to sell magazines and movies. Silly.
Q: Surely your mother liked seeing you on the cover of a magazine with that title.
RR: That's it. It's something that was made for my mother. I think these things are invented to please mothers. In all the conversations I have with her, she ends up mentioning to me that I am the most handsome on the planet and the worst thing is that she tells everyone who is on the street. I try to convince her that it is silly, but I have not succeeded yet.
Q: Is being fit important in your life?
RR: In this industry you meet a lot of attractive people who have not cultivated any other aspect of their personality because they have no interest. But at the same time, there are people who go to great lengths to understand other areas of their personality. For me it is important to find a balance between physique, intelligence and talent.
Q: Do you always know what your next step in Hollywood is?
RR: I try not to think about the future, I don't want to anticipate events, neither in fame, nor in terms of projects. Thinking that way makes me divide my work into two parts and that unbalances me. When I acted I did it for the illusion of shooting movies, but at the same time I am very grateful because it is a privilege to work doing what one likes. My father was not so lucky, he could not work on what he always wanted and that luck is something that I do not take lightly.
Q: I read an article about you recently titled "Ryan Reynolds: Gentleman or Bad Boy" how would you describe yourself?
RR: Oh wow, definitely a gentleman (laughs).
Q: Does the attention it provokes make you uncomfortable?
RR: At home I forget that I am famous. When I go out and people recognize me, that's when I remember. I try to live in my strange and small world, away from everything. What attracts me to this industry, particularly during the last seven years, is the creativity of the projects. During the filming of a movie many challenges arise, many tribulations that surround your performance. I like being part of a film shoot, I think I have the best job in the world and I don't take it lightly for a second. But after spending time doing what you like, you forget the impact it has, how a film can take your face to any corner of the world. That scares me.
Q: Do you like to improvise when you work?
RR: Yes and no. I usually think before I start filming of seven or eight jokes that I can use every day and I tell them to the director, if they fit and are good I use them. There is a certain premeditation in everything I do, nothing is totally improvised. What I like is writing jokes, scenarios, and adjusting dialogues. And the scriptwriters were with us the entire time during the filming of the movie. All of us who have made this film are a great team.
Q: In Free Guy you worked with the Canadian director Shawn Ley, how was the experience?
RR: Shawn was in my apartment in New York and it went from there. It’s hard to make a new movie that’s not based on a comic book or sequel. It’s very challenging. You get the script to a place where it’s great — and then you have to make it 30% better. That was a challenge Shawn and every single cast member was up for and it continues to be nerve-wracking as it goes out into the world.