Enjoy yourself. It’s later than you think.”

-—Guy Lombardo

Ryan Reynolds

2021 National Arts Centre Award

Actor, producer, screenwriter, entrepreneur and activist

Ryan Reynolds is one of Canada’s most beloved and widely recognized actors. In a repertoire ranging from TV sitcoms to animated and feature films, he has established himself as a versatile and engaging performer with a charismatic and quirky persona. Most recently, he has earned popular and critical acclaim for his portrayal of the title character in the hugely successful action movies Deadpool and Deadpool 2.
Mr. Reynolds was born in Vancouver in 1976. The youngest of four brothers, he claims he developed his creativity and trademark wit “mostly for survival purposes.” He landed his first TV role at 13, and appeared in several TV movies and the CBC fantasy series “The Odyssey” before graduating from high school.
He has appeared in a wide range of Canadian and Hollywood productions, including the comedies National Lampoon’s Van Wilder and The In-Laws (with Michael Douglas and Albert Brooks), Buried, Safe House, the romantic comedies Definitely, Maybe and The Proposal (with Sandra Bullock), Pokémon: Detective Pikachu, and the action movie X-Men Origins: Wolverine (with Hugh Jackman). In 2018, he founded his own production company, Maximum Effort.
He starred as the self-deprecating, wise-cracking anti-hero in the blockbuster hit Deadpool (2016), based on the Marvel Comics character of the same name. The darkly funny film achieved impressive financial and critical success: it became one of the highest-grossing R-rated films of all time, won several awards, and earned Mr. Reynolds a Golden Globe nomination. He produced the film and its equally popular sequel, Deadpool 2 (2018), for which he also co-wrote the screenplay. A third instalment is currently in development.
A committed environmentalist and activist, he has been involved with a number of charities, including the Michael J. Fox Foundation for Parkinson’s Research, the Make-a-Wish Foundation, the NAACP Legal Defense and Educational Fund, and the Young Center for Immigrant Children’s Rights. In 2020, to help people hard hit by the COVID-19 pandemic, Mr. Reynolds and his wife Blake Lively donated $1 million to Food Banks Canada and Feeding America.
Ryan Reynolds has a star on Canada’s Walk of Fame and the Hollywood Walk of Fame, and has won the Broadcast Film Critics Association Award for Best Actor in a Comedy and two People’s Choice Awards.