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The world has seen various sides of Ryan Gosling since he first rose to A-list actor status, such as romantic Ryan Gosling in The Notebook and La La Land, action star Ryan Gosling in Drive and Blade Runner 2049, and even comedian Ryan Gosling in The Nice Guys and Crazy Stupid Love. These are only a few of the personas the two-time Academy Award nominee has brought to the big screen thus far, but I have a feeling that upcoming Ryan Gosling movies like Wolfman will show us a new side of him in due time. For a sneak peak of these forthcoming personas, the following is everything a Gosling fan should look forward to seeing on the big screen, starting with the first of the Canadian Hollywood heartthrob’s newest sides: Ryan Gosling, “the spy.”
The Gray Man (TBA)
For a while, it seemed like Ryan Gosling’s role in 2011’s Drive as the mysterious “Driver,” who has one of the most badass crimefighting costumes in cinematic history, would be the closest he may ever come to playing a superhero. Thus, it seems especially fortunate that his next project is directed by two filmmakers who helped redefine superhero movies forever: Anthony and Joe Russo.
Gosling leads the Gray Man cast as Court Gentry, a former CIA operative who now works as an assassin in Europe and must save the lives of his unwitting daughters while being trailed by Chris Evans as a character who will likely be more like Ransom Drysdale in Knives Out than Captain America. Speaking of Knives Out, the Netflix exclusive thriller (the platform’s most expensive original film on record at $200 million) reunites Ana de Armas with Evans and Gosling (the latter of which played “lovers” in Blade Runner 2049) and is currently filming with no set release date.
It is hard to imagine Ryan Gosling as a villain - a role he has actually played on a few occasions (namely Murder By Numbers and The Believer), but not in a long time. Furthermore, his last real dip in the horror genre was an episode of Goosebumps from his childhood. It appears both streaks may end when he stars in the next of Blumhouse’s Universal monster movies remakes in the title role.
Following his brilliant reinvention of The Invisible Man, director Leigh Whannell is now setting his sights on the story of The Wolf Man, in which a bite curses an average human being to become a vicious creature under a full moon. There is no telling what vision the original Saw movies’ writer has in mind for Wolfman, which is still in pre-production at the moment. Yet, after 2020’s The Invisible Man decided to make Elisabeth Moss’ victimized character the star, I would not be surprised if Ryan Gosling’s take on the iconic half-man, half-wolf character is not one to be sympathized with this time.
The Actor (TBA)
One side of Ryan Gosling we have seen multiple times is the film noir hero, both in the modernized sense with the aforementioned Drive and The Place Beyond the Pines in 2012 and also in the old school sense with director Ruben Fleischer’s Gangster Squad from the following year. Well, needless to say, the guy is good at playing these sorts of roles and he is welcome to return to them whenever he pleases as far as I am concerned, which is why I am excited to see The Actor.
From NEON, the studio that distributed Bong Joon-ho’s Parasite, this forthcoming mystery thriller follows a man who wakes up in 1950s Ohio with no memory of who he is, sending him a journey to rediscover who he truly is. The period piece will be the first live action directorial effort in years from Duke Johnson, who co-helmed the Oscar-nominated Anomalisa with Charlie Kaufman in 2015. In addition to the lead role, Ryan Gosling has also signed on to produce The Actor, which is now in pre-production.
Project Hail Mary (TBA)
Another side of Ryan Gosling that emerged fairly recently is the spaceman, after portraying Neil Armstrong, in La La Land director Damien Chazelle’s stunning biopic, First Man, in 2018. Well, it appears the actor must not be ready to make a full return to Earth so soon as he has yet another adventure beyond the stars coming up.
In what sounds like a nice consolation from leaving Solo: A Star Wars Story on less than stellar terms years earlier, Phil Lord and Christopher Miller are directing a new sci-fi epic called Project Hail Mary, which follows an astronaut who becomes the sole survivor of a devastating accident in outer space, making him the last hope for humanity as a cataclysmic threat emerges. The screenplay, based on the novel by Andy Weir, is being penned by Drew Goddard, who also adapted Weir’s novel The Martian into the 2015 Best Picture nominee remembered today as one of the best space movies in recent memory. With Ryan Gosling producing and starring, we may have another winner here, Houston.
Untitled David Leitch Project (TBA)
A film considered to be one of the best action movies in recent memory is 2014’s John Wick, which turned former stunt performers Chad Stahelski and David Leitch into two of the most sought-after action directors of their generation. The pair have since gone on to helm separate projects, with Leitch going off to do box office hits like Deadpool 2 and Fast and Furious Presents: Hobbs & Shaw, and his next project as director seems like it's going to be very close to his heart.
According to an article by Deadline in September 2020, Ryan Gosling has been cast to play a movie stuntman in an upcoming directorial effort from David Leitch. There are currently no other updates to report on regarding this action film which is also currently untitled, other than it being penned by Hotel Artemis director Drew Pearce for Universal Pictures. Ironically, though, this will be the second time Gosling has played a Hollywood stunt performer after Drive.
The Underwater Welder (TBA)
I mentioned earlier how Ryan Gosling has never starred in a superhero movie yet and projected the unlikelihood of it ever happening at this point in his career. However, I never did say anything about him having low chances of doing a comic book movie someday, at least, and it seems that I would have been wrong if I did because he has reportedly in the stages of developing one for a few years now.
The film in question is The Underwater Welder, which is inspired by cartoonist Jeff Lemire’s bestselling graphic novel from 2012 about a man who encounters a supernatural presence of eerie familiarity to him while performing his titular dangerous profession. The adaptation would mark Ryan Gosling’s next big foray into horror following his role in Wolfman, if he chooses the act in this particular movie, that is. The most recent reports of the project, which date back to when he first became involved in 2017, cite Gosling as one of the producers with his starring potential uncertain at the moment.
Untitled Busby Berkeley Project (TBA)
The Underwater Welder is not the only potential film on the horizon that Ryan Gosling is helping produce, yet it is uncertain whether or not he intends to act as well. In fact, according to The Hollywood Reporter, the actor was considering it to potentially be his second directorial effort after writing and helming the 2014 fantasy drama Lost River in 2014.
The movie in question is a biopic about Busby Berkeley, a prolific legend of cinema’s golden age known for directing and choreographing some of the most iconic musicals of all time, such as 42nd Street or Girl Crazy, starring The Wizard of Oz’s Judy Garland and Mickey Rooney. Ryan Gosling has been attached to the project since 2014 when he was announced as a co-producer on the film with Drive producer Marc Platt. Few updates have emerged since then, but I would not be surprised if the La La Land star was itching to return to the musical at some point and this would be a perfect vehicle through which to do so.
By now, most audiences are very familiar with the Ryan Gosling as the man of action, the charming romantic lead, or even the utterly unrecognizable loser who is a far cry from the “Hey Girl” memes (see Half Nelson and Lars and the Real Girl to see what I am talking about). However, what makes the Canadian Golden Globe winner one of Hollywood’s most versatile and timeless talents, if you ask me, is that he is always looking reinvent himself and rarely fails in the process. I am most definitely looking forward to becoming acquainted with Ryan Gosling the super spy, Ryan Gosling the creature of the night, and Ryan Gosling the spaceman (again), but is there a side of Ryan Gosling you are most interested in meeting in the near future?
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Jason has been writing since he was able to pick up a washable marker, with which he wrote his debut illustrated children's story, later transitioning to a short-lived comic book series and (very) amateur filmmaking before finally settling on pursuing a career in writing about movies in lieu of making them. Look for his name in just about any article related to Batman.
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