Ryan Gosling Says Burt Reynolds Befriended Him to Meet His ‘Beautiful Mom’


Ryan Gosling stopped by Jimmy Kimmel Live! on Wednesday night to promote his upcoming action-comedy The Fall Guy, which hits cinemas tomorrow. During the sit-down, the Barbie star revealed that Reynolds tried to befriend him on the set of his film debut to gain access to the young actor’s “attractive mother.”

Gosling made his film debut at age 13 alongside Reynolds in the horror comedy Frankenstein and Me (1996). The film was released just a year before Reynolds reinvigorated his career, and earned an Oscar nomination, with his role in Boogie Nights.

Speaking to Kimmel, Gosling reflected on the singular experience of working with the legendary star, who made an unshakeable impression on him. “It’s complicated,” the Oscar winner replied when asked if he carved out a friendship with Reynolds.

“I thought he took a shine to me,” Gosling continued. “I thought he thought there was something special about me. And then I realized that I have a really beautiful mom.”

Gosling was crushed by the realization. “It was like I was getting secondary shine. The real shine was from my mom,” the actor protested. He then told Kimmel his major regret of that time: “I wish I had found out sooner,” he said flatly. “Now we know why he was being friendly.”

But Gosling’s mother reacted quite differently than her son. “My god, she loved it!” Gosling said of Reynolds’ attention. “Are you kidding me?”

“You could’ve been Ryan Reynolds, if that turned out,” Kimmel joked to applause.

Gosling’s time on set with Reynolds was influential in other ways. He shared with Kimmel the cryptic piece of advice the legendary Smokey and the Bandit star shared with him that he’s carried around for almost 30 years.

“Let me tell you something kid,” Gosling recalled Reynolds telling him. “Don’t spend your life stepping over diamonds to live with a cubic zirconia.

“I was like, ‘I’m 13. I don’t know what any of those things are. I don’t know what any of that is. Stop looking at my mom. I’m right here,” the actor said, pointing to his eyes.

Gosling plays a stuntman in The Fall Guy, in theaters tomorrow. It’s a winking tribute to Reynolds, who began his career as a stuntman before becoming one of the most famous film stars of all time.

You can watch Gosling’s Jimmy Kimmel Live! appearance below.

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