Ryan Rodney Reynolds, popularly known as Ryan Reynolds, is a Canadian actor. He first rose to prominence through his portrayal of Michael Bergen in the ABC sitcom Two Guys and a Girl (1998-2001), Reynolds made his mark in Hollywood in the early 2000’s through films like National Lampoon's Van Wilder (2002), Blade: Trinity (2004), Definitely, Maybe
(2008), The Proposal
(2009) and Buried (2010). In 2016, Reynolds portrayed the titular character in the Marvel superhero film Deadpool
, which opened to near-universal critical acclaim and went on to become the highest-grossing X-Men film of all time. For his performance in the film, Reynolds was nominated for a Golden Globes Award for Best Performance by an Actor in a Musical or Comedy that year.
Reynolds was born in Vancouver, Canada to James Chester Reynolds and Tammy Reynolds. His father was a food wholesaler, while his mother worked in a retail store. The youngest of their four children, Reynolds attended the Kitsilano Secondary School and subsequently joined the Kwantlen Polytechnic University in Vancouver. However, he soon dropped out in a bid to pursue a career in acting.
Between 2002 and 2007, Reynolds was in a relationship with Canadian singer Alanis Morissette
. Shortly afterwards, he started dating actress Scarlett Johansson
, and they got married in 2008. The marriage was short-lived, and the couple filed for a divorce in 2010.
Reynolds started dating his Green Lantern co-star Blake Lively
in 2011, and they got married in 2012. The couple have two children together.
Reynolds made his film debut at the age of 17, with the Canadian film Ordinary Magic (1993). Throughout the initial phase of his career, the actor appeared in several films that turned out to be critically panned box office duds. His starring role in the television sitcom Two Guys and a Girl changed the course of Reynolds’ career, and in 2002, he tasted mainstream success for the first time with the romantic comedy National Lampoon's Van Wilder. Subsequently, Reynolds appeared in the heist film Foolproof (2003), the superhero film Blade: Trinity (2004) and the horror thriller The Amityville Horror (2005), - all of which enjoyed moderate success at the box office.
In 2006, Reynolds starred alongside Ben Affleck
, Andy Garcia
and Jason Bateman
in the action thriller Smokin’ Aces’ which did well at the box office despite the mixed critical reception. The 2008 romantic-comedy drama Definitely, Maybe
had the actor essaying the role of a man caught between an impending divorce and an 11-year old daughter who is determined to find out about her dad’s past relationships. The film was well-received by the critics and the audience alike, and currently holds a 71% approval rating on the review aggregator website Rotten Tomatoes.
Reynolds was cast as Wade Wilson/Deadpool in X-Men Origins: Wolverine
in 2009 - a role he had been interested in playing for a long time. While the actor received praise for his portrayal, the film received criticism for the characterisation of Deadpool, which strayed from the original comic book version. The film was a box office success despite the mixed reviews. Reynolds then starred alongside Sandra Bullock
in the romantic comedy The Proposal
(2009), which went on to become one of the biggest hits of his career. The movie grossed over $300 million at the box office, and emerged as the highest grossing romantic comedy of 2009. In the same year, he was cast alongside Jeff Daniels
in the comedy-drama Paper Man, which told the story of a failed novelist’s unlikely friendship with a teenager.
The thriller film Buried (2010) had the actor playing a civilian truck driver in Iraq who finds himself buried alive in a wooden coffin following a terrorist attack. The film was met with positive reviews upon its release, and Reynolds’ performance received praise from all quarters. He was also nominated for a Saturn Award and won a Fangoria Chainsaw Award for his role in Buried. In 2011, Reynolds was cast in the titular role in the superhero film Green Lantern
. Despite the hype, the film was met with lukewarm critical and commercial reception, which led to the cancellation of any plans for a sequel. The fantasy comedy The Change-Up,
which came out in the same year, also didn’t turn out to be a favourite with the critics despite enjoying moderate box office success.
The 2012 spy-action thriller Safe House
saw Reynolds playing a CIA agent on the run from mercenaries along with the fugitive (played by Denzel Washington
) in his charge. The film was met with mixed to positive reviews and raked over $200 million at the box office. This was followed by the fantasy action-comedy R.I.P.D.
(2013), which failed to impress despite featuring a star-studded cast that included Jeff Bridges
and Kevin Bacon
. Subsequently, the actor appeared in the black comedy The Voices
(2014), the road movie Mississippi Grind (2015) and the historical drama The Woman in Gold
(2015) - all of which garnered positive reviews and reaffirmed Reynolds’ versatility as an actor.
In 2016, Reynolds returned to the superhero genre with Deadpool
. While the actor’s portrayal of the “Merc with a Mouth” earned him a Golden Globes nomination for Best Actor in a Musical or Comedy, the film smashed numerous box office records and received much critical acclaim, redefining the genre in the process. Deadpool went on to gross over $780 million at the box office, and won two Critics’ Choice Movie Awards and two People’s Choice Awards, including one (for Favourite Movie Actor) for Reynolds. In 2017, Reynolds appeared alongside Jake Gyllenhaal
and Rebecca Ferguson
in the sci-fi horror film Life, which opened to positive reviews. The action-comedy The Hitman’s Bodyguard and the sequel to Deadpool are some of the actor’s projects in 2017.
Reynolds made his television debut with a main role in the Canadian teen-drama Hillside (known as Fifteen in the United States) (1991-’93). Throughout the early 90’s he continued to appear in several television films and shows like The Odyssey, The Marshal and The X-Files. The actor’s breakout role came in 1998, when he starred alongside Traylor Howard and Richard Ruccolo in the sitcom Two Guys and a Girl.
Since his rise to stardom, Reynolds has hosted an episode in the 35th season of Saturday Night Live and in series 18 of the popular British show Top Gear.