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Video: 32 Facts on Ryan Reynolds/Hollywood Insider YouTube Channel

Ryan Reynolds is superhero royalty nowadays. His name is synonymous with the Merc with a Mouth and it’s hard to imagine any other actor playing Wade Wilson. 2016’s Deadpool was the second highest-grossing R-rated movie of all time after Mel Gibson’s The Passion. We can surmise from that that Deadpool is right after Jesus in terms of a fanbase. He followed it up with Deadpool 2, which was just as big a success as the original. Outside of Deadpool, he has proven he has incredible range as an actor. He has starred in everything from dark indies to sitcoms. Despite Wade Wilson suggesting that Ryan Reynolds is famous because he’s so attractive instead of his “superior acting technique,” he is a pretty incredible actor. He has proven that time and time again in his multiple film and TV roles.

#1- He’s a proud Canook.

Perhaps his storied politeness and gentlemanly conduct on set can be explained by this one. Ryan Reynolds was born in Vancouver, British Columbia. He was the baby of the family having three siblings born before him. His family had a history in Canadian politics before he came along as his grandfather was in the Legislative Assembly of Alberta.

#2- Even as a kid, Ryan Reynolds was an innovator.

Being the genius child that he was, Reynolds found a new way to enhance his breakfast cereal. Of course, a kid’s first complaint about Lucky Charms is that the marshmallow to cereal ratio is too low. So, Reynolds came up with the brilliant idea to take all the marshmallows out of one box of Lucky Charms and transfer them to another. There is a problem with this method being that he was left with a box devoid of marshmallows. Although, surely Reynolds was able to trick one of his siblings into eating this box.

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#3- He was a jock in school.

Not terribly shocking that a guy who would go on to star as a Marvel movie action hero has athletics on his resume. Reynolds played football for nine years before quitting to focus on his acting career. Hey, he had to get those abs from somewhere.

#4- His first starring role was in a soap opera.

Reynolds played Billy Simpson in the soap opera Fifteen when he was a teenager. It’s the usual teen drama centering around the darker parts of teenage life: alcohol abuse, parental divorce, sexual pressure. It was kind of the Canadian De Grassi. The show was heavily criticized for playing into high school stereotypes: leather jackets were to jocks as suspenders were to nerds. Reynolds acted in thirteen episodes.

#5- He starred in a fantasy series.

When you think Ryan Reynolds, fantasy is not the first thing that comes to mind. Maybe fans could see him playing a snarky centaur with abs. But at the tender age of seventeen, Reynolds starred in The Odyssey, a show about a preteen who slips into a coma and dreams he lived in a world with no adults. The show lasted for three seasons, but Reynolds only acted in thirteen episodes in season two.

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#6- He might have taken April Fools Day a bit too seriously

It’s not a far reach to think the guy who plays Deadpool is a bit of a prankster. However, he might have taken it too far in his senior year of high school. Reynolds was expelled for stealing a car to celebrate the occasion that is the first of April.

#7- Ryan Reynolds acted in the TV movie Sabrina the Teenage Witch.

Reynolds started gaining his fan base among millennials early in life. Every 90s kid remembers Sabrina the Teenage Witch. What they might not remember is that Ryan Reynolds played Seth in the made for TV movie which served as a pilot for the massively popular show. Although this feels like it would have been Reynold’s first production state-side, the movie takes place in the US but was filmed in British Columbia. Unfortunately, Reynolds did not continue with the show once production moved to the US.

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#8- Reynolds starred in National Lampoons: Van Wilder.

Beginning his foray into R-rated comedies, Reynolds played the title role in National Lampoons: Van Wilder. In the movie, Reynolds played a seventh-year college senior who is a hot-shot on campus with no intention of graduating. Unfortunately, the film didn’t do well with critics or fans, earning an 18% rating on Rotten Tomatoes.

#9- He was married to Scarlett Johansson

In 2008, the king and queen amongst superhero actors were married, granted, before either took on the role as their respective heroes. The marriage lasted just three years before their divorce in 2011 and Reynolds went on to marry Blake Lively. Johansson explained in an interview with Vanity Fair that she had no hard feelings towards Reynolds. They were young and naïve, not ready to handle the trials of marriage.

#10- Let’s get down to the serious question about Reynolds: what are his dogs like?

Reynolds adopted Baxter, an adorable golden retriever, while he was still married to Johansson in 2008. Reynolds kept Baxter in the divorce and fortunately for Johansson, Reynolds didn’t force her to pay too much puppy support. Reynolds has since adopted mixed-breed Billie who is a sassy little puppy. During the dog’s training Reynolds said he was “spitting acid at Sigourney Weaver and haunting the dreams of priests.” According to Reynolds, Billie has since calmed down and Reynolds can trust him without a leash.

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#11- Just before he hit it big with Deadpool, Reynolds played a lucky charm.

Perhaps a nod to his roots mentioned in fact #2, Reynolds played a leprechaun of sorts in Mississippi Grind. Mississippi Grind is a movie about a guy with a gambling addiction who meets a man who seems to give him endless luck. The film was independently produced and it went largely under the radar of the public despite Reynolds acting alongside fellow superstar Ben Mendelson. Anyone who likes brilliant movies packed with rich social commentary and smart symbolism should check this movie out.

#12- Ryan Reynolds had not heard of Deadpool until a friend suggested he’d be perfect for the role.

Immediately after, Reynolds dropped everything and went to his local comic book store and checked out a huge stack of Deadpool comics. He fell in love with the character and that’s how the snarky actor was introduced to the wisecracking superhero. And a match made in comic book hero heaven was born.

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#13- Deadpool probably wouldn’t have been made if test footage wasn’t leaked to the public.

Let’s face it, the character Deadpool isn’t the most popular in the world of comic book characters. If you have Spider-Man and Superman on one end of the spectrum, Deadpool is probably down there with the Batman villain Condiment Man, who apparently was not just made as a joke for The Lego Batman Movie. Deadpool the movie seemed like a distant dream until one crew member sneakily leaked some test footage. Fans begged the studio to release the full movie and fortunately, their prayers were answered.

#14- Deadpool was made on a budget of just 58 million dollars.

Unsurprisingly given the last fact, the studio didn’t have much faith in the little engine that could be Deadpool. They gave the movie a miniscule budget to work with compared to the budget that was afforded by the same studio to X-Men Origins: Wolverine and The Wolverine beforehand. Deadpool’s budget was so tiny, nearly a third of the movie is spent using the same set, the highway overpass where the Merc with a Mouth annihilates Francis’ goons with only twelve bullets. A movie filled with meta-humor, Deadpool makes fun of its own budget when Deadpool notices he only ever sees Colossus and Negasonic Teenage Warhead at the X-Men mansion and comments, “it’s as if the studio couldn’t afford better X-Men.”

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#15- Dopinder was a tribute to a fallen friend.

Who doesn’t love Dopinder in Deadpool? He is seemingly the most innocent character in the entire movie and is utterly adorable, that is until he kidnaps his romantic rival and maybe kills him. And in Deadpool 2, he is the sweetest person who ever dreamt of being a contract killer. Is dark innocence a thing? Reynolds named Dopinder after a “cool kid” he knew in elementary school. Unfortunately, real-life Dopinder was struck by lightning and killed at a young age.

#16- Negasonic Teenage Warhead might not have made it into the movie.

The sassiest character in the Deadpool Universe, Negasonic is known for not giving a crap about anything as much as she is known for her comically long name. According to producer Rhett Reese, she almost didn’t make it into the movie. The studio was debating having other B-rated X-Men in the movie like Cannonball, but eventually settled on Negasonic and fans are eternally grateful for their decision.

#17- Ryan Reynolds is a sweet dude.

The Canadian inside him was tingling as Reynolds wore the now-iconic Deadpool suit and he decided to do something nice. During the filming of Deadpool, he visited some sick kids who had requested meeting him as their Make-A-Wish wish. Perhaps their parents didn’t know that the upcoming Deadpool movie would be R-rated but, nonetheless, it was pretty sweet of Reynolds.

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#18- He’s also a stud.

The Deadpool costume was originally built with a layer of fake muscle underneath. Unfortunately, this layer had to be removed when it didn’t look right on camera. Fortunately, Reynolds’ already Herculean muscle build was enough to fill in the gap. Sorry ladies, Blake Lively snatched him up before any of us got the chance.

#19- Again with the pranks going too far!

On April Fools Day, Reynolds tweeted out that Deadpool would be rated PG-13. This caused major fan backlash. Would Deadpool be the same without the constant dropping of F-bombs and the borderline puke-worthy violence? Reynolds later had to get back on Twitter and let fans know the original tweet was a joke. Maybe leave the pranking out of it Ryan, it already got you kicked out of school.

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#20- Reynolds respects his writers.

When Fox Studios refused to pay the writers to come on set during filming, Reynolds took matters into his own hands. He paid them out of pocket to ensure that they’d stay on set. It makes sense that Reynolds wanted the writers to be on set to do on the fly joke punch ups and to help make improv moments fit into the rest of the script.

#21- Deadpool was not Reynolds’ first superhero role.

Reynolds not-so-loving tributes to his time as Green Lantern were everywhere in the original Deadpool. In the opening credits, the audience is treated to the image of a Green Lantern trading card just before a lovely crotch shot of Deadpool. Also, it should be noted this is just after we see a People magazine cover featuring Reynolds as the “Sexiest Man Alive” which… sound judgement on People’s part. Also, when Wade is first brought into the Weapons X program, he requests his super suit not be “green or animated,” which is a reference to Green Lantern’s suit being made for the movie with the help of CGI.

#22- T.J. Miller was cast for a very… specific reason.

T.J. Miller’s Weasel is one of the funniest characters in one of the funniest movies in recent memory. Simon Kinberg said he seemed like an actor who could keep up with Reynolds comedically. But more importantly, he said Miller seemed like “a superhero whose power is spilling mustard on his shirt.” Seems a bit mean but no Deadpool fan can say they don’t agree.

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#23- Deadpool 2 got some PC points in.

Deadpool 2 is a movie in the modern ages for modern audiences. Likewise, it has one of the, if not the most diverse casts in any movie of all time. The movie features Domino who is Black, Dopinder who is Indian, Yukio who is Asian and paired with Negasonic. Both characters are lesbian. We’ll also give them credit for Colossus.

#24- Guess the most popular X-Men are still too cool for Deadpool 2.

Despite the original movie making almost a billion dollars, the more famous X-Men couldn’t be bothered to show up on the set of Deadpool 2. While Deadpool is recovering from his suicide attempt and wandering around the X-Mansion (Professor Xavier seems way too proud of the fact he came up with a name as cool as “X-Men”) lamenting about how there are none of the popular X-Men in the mansion, a group of well known X-Men are seen shutting the door to a room in which they’re having a private meeting. But this wasn’t even filmed on the set of Deadpool 2. Instead, footage was sent in from the set of X-Men: Dark Phoenix.

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#25- Wolverine is prisoner #24601.

While planning his heist of DMC prison, Deadpool draws blueprints that look worthy of being displayed on mom’s refrigerator. Let’s just say Deadpool’s artistic abilities won’t be featured in MOMA anytime soon. On the blueprints, we can see that Wolverine is labeled as prisoner #24601. If that number sounds familiar to Broadway nerds, it’s because that is Jean Valjean’s prison ID number in Les Miserables. Hugh Jackman played both Wolverine and Jean Valjean in the 2012 screen adaptation of Les Mis.

#26- Ryan Reynolds’ weird train of thought epiphany during filming made it into Deadpool 2.

All of our brains go on strange and incoherent tangents. However, not all of our trains of thought make it into blockbuster movies. While filming Deadpool 2, it occurred to Reynold’s that the song “Do You Wanna Build a Snowman?” from Frozen sounded a lot like the song “Papa Can You Hear Me?” from Yentl. And what do you know, Deadpool notices this too while mourning over Vanessa.

#27- Ryan Reynolds personally cast the character Peter.

Ah Peter. He’s the chubbiest member of X-Force with the power of a can-do attitude. He threatens Dopinder’s spot as the cutest resident of the Deadpool universe. He was played by actor Rob Delaney in a fat suit, presumably because if you look at his picture without his Peter costume, he might dethrone Ryan as the hottest cast member in X-Force. Reynolds offered him the role after seeing his performance in Catastrophe.

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#28- Sharknado fires back.

While Deadpool faces off against Cable in Deadpool 2, he quips, “which Sharknado are we on?” because Cable is from the future. The makers of the Sharknado franchise saw this and either loved it or hated it because in The Last Sharknado: It’s About Time, Fin says the line, “which Deadpool are we up to?”

#29- Deadpool 2 had the most fourth wall breaking promotional campaign.

The Deadpool 2 team knew they had to do something truly Deadpoolian to promote the movie. They replaced the main characters on the covers of Fight Club, Predator, and The Terminator with Deadpool on the cover of the movies’ Blu-Ray boxes sold at Walmart. It’s a toss of a coin whether people who went to buy said Blu-Ray discs were pissed or tickled.

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#30- Poor kid.

Julian Denison killed it as Rusty. Unfortunately, he was locked out of seeing his own movie. The movie was R-rated and Denison was only 15 at the time of release. Hopefully, his 16th birthday came soon and he was able to see the movie in theaters. He deserved it, his performance was phenomenal.

#31- Want proof Josh Brolin is ripped?

Not that anyone needs it, his biceps are ginormous. Rob Liefield asked to hold his prop gun on set. Brolin warned him to be careful, it was heavy. A bit of an understatement there, Thanos. The gun was a whopping seventy pounds. Brolin was carrying a gun the weight of an average seven-year-old at almost all times on screen while playing Cable.

#32- Reynolds is one of the few actors to play both a DC and Marvel character.

It’s a tale of two cities, one bombed at the box office and one became a box office legend. Reynolds probably wishes to forget his time as Green Lantern while he probably bought a Scrooge McDuck style pool of gold after playing Deadpool. Needless to say, we all hope Green Lantern is a distant memory for the actor and he continues to play Deadpool for years to come.

We, at Hollywood Insider, would like to wish continued success to Ryan Reynolds, we look forward to you making us laugh over and over again through your movies and, of course, your twitter as you critique the famous artful masterpieces made by toddlers.

 

 

 

 

 

 

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By Carrie Fishbane

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  • Carrie Fishbane is obsessed with all things comedy and loves to reflect on the impact of comedy on the world. Having spent thousands of hours studying literature, she also writes about the political impact of entertainment and the power movies and TV have to create social change. Hollywood Insider promotes ethics and substance in entertainment, which is exactly in line with Carrie's perspective. Carrie’s favorite movies include Jojo Rabbit, Deadpool, and Inception and her favorite shows are Rick and Morty, Crazy Ex-Girlfriend, and The Office.

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