Ryan Gosling is a certified movie star. The London, Ontario native has gone on from humble beginnings to become one of Hollywood's most bankable leading men. Unlike other movie stars, though, Gosling is careful about the projects he chooses, and typically only takes projects that really offer a good part.
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This was not always the case, though. Like any other actor who has to start out at the bottom, Gosling has appeared in some films that have been all but forgotten. Even still, he displayed a knack for performing in these movies, and they speak to many of his later roles as well. these are ten Ryan Gosling roles that everyone has forgotten.
10 Richard Haywood (Murder By Numbers)
Before Ryan Gosling was a megastar who could really just pick and choose the projects that he wanted to appear in, he was just a regular, working actor like anyone else. That means that for the first part of Gosling's career, he was showing up in schlocky thrillers like Murder By Numbers.
The film starred Gosling and Michael Pitt as a pair of high schoolers who plan end execute what they believe to be the perfect crime. Hot on their tails is a Detective played by Sandra Bullock, who might just be the only one who can get to the bottom of this meticulously planned murder. Needless to say, the movie was fairly forgettable.
9 Alan Bosley (Remember the Titans)
Remember the Titans is one of those movies that stays good in your memory as long as you never go back and watch it again with anything resembling a critical eye. though Denzel Washington turns in a good performance (as usual) the film is burdened by corny period signifiers and a "can't we all just get along?" narrative about racism that has not aged well.
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Among all the pandering and speechifying about high school football are some other great performances from actors like Donald Faison, Wood Harris, Ethan Suplee, and a young Ryan Gosling. Remember the Titans didn't seem to know the talent it had on its hands, because Gosling was almost criminally underutilized.
8 Henry Letham (Stay)
Even in his early career, Ryan Gosling was making an effort to take on challenging roles in movies that were not entirely straightforward. One of those projects was Stay, a psychological thriller co-starring Ewan MacGregor and Naomi Watts. Unfortunately, the film was a critical and box office failure.
Gosling played a man named Henry Letham, who survives a car accident on the Brooklyn Bridge. He is then treated by a psychiatrist (played by MacGregor) who begins to unravel the mysterious circumstances of Henry's life. The entire thing ends with a groan-inducing twist.
7 Stephen Meyers (The Ides of March)
Hot on the tail of proving his antihero bona fides in Drive, Ryan Gosling followed up with a performance in the political thriller The Ides of March. Based on the play Farragut North, the film stars Gosling as Stephen Meyers, press secretary for a Democratic primary candidate (played by George Clooney).
The film is a great example of how to adapt a play into a motion picture and received a nomination for Best Adapted Screenplay at the 84th Academy Awards. Gosling delivers a fantastic performance as a man who slowly becomes more corrupt the more he is exposed to the darker side of politics.
6 Danny Balint (The Believer)
Ryan Gosling's role in The Believer might be one of his most controversial. Based on a true story which was first reported in the New York Times, The Believer is about a young, Jewish man who becomes involved with a group of neo-Nazis after giving up on his faith and becoming disillusioned with its teachings.
Gosling gives a great performance, one that came right on the heels of his family-friendly turn in Remember the Titans. The Believer gave Gosling his first serious role, and showed the world that he had a lot of talent. The film is incredibly dark, and it most likely helped to influence the roles gosling would take later on.
5 Lars Lindstrom (Lars and the Real Girl)
Over his career, Gosling has proved that he can play roles that are dark or more lighthearted, and Lars Lindstrom from Lars and the Real Girl falls firmly into the latter category. In the film, Gosling plays a lonely man who orders a lifelike Sex Doll off of the internet and begins a platonic relationship with it.
Gosling does an admirable job at portraying someone whose situation is more empathetic than pitiable. Sure, Lars is lonely and socially awkward, but really all he needs is something to show him that he can interact with people and that he doesn't have to be alone. Though the film was not a financial success, it was a hit with critics and also picked up an Academy Award nomination for Best Original Screenplay.
4 Willy Beachum (Fracture)
Over the course of his acting career, Ryan Gosling has had opportunities to appear in films with some of the best actors out there, including Sir Anthony Hopkins, with whom he starred in Fracture, a legal thriller about a man who tries to kill his wife, confesses, but still pleads not guilty and somehow beats the charges.
Gosling plays Willy Beachum, the young prosecutor who takes the case. The film is imperfect, but does portray a sense of hubris on both the parts of Hopkins and Gosling, who both feel that they are smarter than the other, and that they can beat one another in a game of wits.
3 Sean Hanlon (Breaker High)
Now it's time for the deep dive into Gosling's past. Every actor has to start somewhere, and as a young, Canadian actor, Gosling got his first regular role on the TV show, Breaker High. The series followed the lives of teenage students who attended high school on a cruise ship that sailed the world.
Yeah, it was an absolutely ridiculous premise, and watching it now, it's hard to get past the garish set design and painfully 90s fashion sense. Gosling played Sean Hanlon, an ambitious goofball who just couldn't seem to stay out of trouble. His best friend and roommate on the show was played by none other than Tyler Labine.
2 Hercules (Young Hercules)
Did you know that Ryan Gosling grew up to be Kevin Sorbo? At least, that's what happened in the world of Young Hercules. The series was a prequel to the Sam Raimi-produced show about the ancient Greek hero and was aimed at a younger audience than its companion series.
Ryan Gosling played the titular strongman. Looking back at it now, the show is pretty bad, but it was Gosling's second regular role on a TV series, and he got to work on it in New Zealand. It was also the last successful TV project he did before his breakthrough film performance in Remember The Titans.
1 Greg Banks (Goosebumps)
Look at that baby face! All the way back in 1996, Ryan Gosling starred in an episode of Goosebumps which was based on the popular series of kids' horror books by R.L. Stine. Gosling appeared in the episode "Say Cheese and Die," where he played Greg Banks, a kid who finds a camera whose pictures portray grim outcomes of the future (usually involving death, or at the very least, a serious injury).
If you watch any of these old episodes of Goosebumps, you will notice one thing almost immediately: they are not very good. The actors, particularly, are very bad. However, Gosling stands out among the crowd. The script he's working with might not be great, but it was obvious even back then that he had enough talent to make it.