Yek Keak
by Yek Keak

Canada has filled the ranks of Hollywood with top stars you probably didn’t even know were Canadian. Star Trek's Captain Kirk (William Shatner), Friends' Chandler (Matthew Perry), Austin Powers (Mike Myers), Baywatch bombshell Pamela Anderson, Keanu Reeves and Michael J. Fox were all born Canadian. It could be the food, weather, big open spaces or the fact that the folks north of the border, seem generally friendlier that makes these people featured below so watchable. 


Ryan Gosling
Age: 36
Born: London, Ontario, Canada

Breakout role: 2004's The Notebook – the heart-breaking romantic drama where Gosling plays the perfect guy, Noah, for the perfect gal, Allie (Rachel McAdams). It makes die-hard romantics cry and swoon at the same time. 

Why you know him:
TV addicts may remember a younger version of Gosling as Young Hercules in the late 1990s or even further back in the Mickey Mouse Club.  But most people these days see Gosling on the streets everywhere. That's because the “Ryan Gosling” look is the rage – brooding with sexy stubble and even sexier air of mystery. From his indie fare – Half Nelson (2006), Lars And The Real Girl (2007) – to the Hollywood stuff – Gangster Squad (2013), La La Land (2016) – this Oscar-nominated star keeps his distance as the quiet enigmatic man but makes every shot meaningful when he’s in front of the cameras. Fans were actually distraught when he broke up with co-star/real squeeze McAdams because they truly looked like the perfect couple. Now a father of two girls with Eva Mendes, he will soon be featured in the upcoming remake of Blade Runner.

Fun fact:
While working on the Mickey Mouse Club, he was housemates with another famous mouseketeer – Justin Timberlake 

Cute quote:
“I can't tell you how many times people go, "Are you Ryan?". Then they take the picture and realise, in that moment, that I'm not Ryan Reynolds.” 
Drive (2011)
Only God Forgives (2013)
Lost River (2014)



Ellen Page
Age: 30
Born: Halifax, Nova Scotia, Canada
Breakout role:  Page played a sassy, independent-minded teenager who had to go through an unwanted nine months of an unplanned pregnancy in 2007's Oscar-winning comedy, Juno.


Why you know her:
Juno was such a perfect vehicle for Page's sardonic, indie sense of anti-establishment that you actually thought she was carrying a baby amid her potty-mouth non-conformity. Starting out first in small Canadian films and TV shows, she gained notice in the reverse-psychology thriller, Hard Candy (2005), playing a teen avenger who captures and tortures a paedophile. That image of a fearless pocket dynamo probably hampered Page's subsequent works – she was truly wasted in X Men: The Last Stand (2006) – until her rejuvenation in 2010's mind-blowing Inception. Next up, she keeps things interesting in a reboot of Flatliners, which is based on a 1990's original Julia Roberts horror thriller about people trying to find out what lies beyond death. 

Fun fact:
Her nickname – “The Tiny Canadian” – was given to her by her roommates when she lived in New York City

Cute quote:
“In Nova Scotia I like to leave my job behind. So when friends say, 'Oh, I'm sorry, I didn't see that one', I don't care.” 
Inception (2010)
To Rome With Love (2012)



Ryan Reynolds
Age: 40
Born: Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada
Breakout role: Stoners will swear on their beer that Reynolds totally belongs to their world when he played the rascally mentor/party organiser, Van Wilder, in 2002's hi-jinks comedy, Van Wilder: Party Liaison.

Why you know him:
This dude is funny, hunky and talkative, and that's not only just with movie fans but with his leading ladies too. The women he has charmed read like a Famous Celebs List – Scarlett Johansson, Alanis Morissette, Rachael Leigh Cook, and his now wife, Blake Lively. But as impressive the list is, Reynolds' own body of work is an eclectic mix that thrills, spills and very often makes you laugh. Seriously, which other actor has fought Wolverine (X-Men Origins: Wolverine, 2009), been buried in a box underground (Buried, 2010) and hammed it up with Harold and Kumar (Harold & Kumar Go to White Castle, 2004)? Recently, Reynolds was in sci-thriller Life, a film so serious people die in it. His co-star Jake Gyllenhaal said the whole time, he couldn't stop laughing whenever Reynolds was on the scene.


Fun fact:
He has been both Green Lantern and Deadpool, aka The Fastest Mouth Alive. But the one superhero Reynolds always wanted to play is the Flash, aka The Fastest Man Alive.

Cute quote:
“I'm not a (ice) hockey fan, which is probably why I had to leave Canada in the first place.” 
Green Lantern (2011)
The Voices (2014)
Woman In Gold (2015)



Rachel McAdams
Age: 38
Born: London, Ontario, Canada
Breakout role: Young audiences today know her as Doctor Strange's girlfriend in the 2016 superhero actioner. But their moms will never forget the time she and Ryan Gosling made them fall in love with wondrous love itself in The Notebook (2004).


Why you know her:
Seriously, who doesn't love Rachel McAdams? She looked stunning even when she played a mean girl ganging up on Lindsay Lohan in 2004's classic teen flick, Mean Girls. Then came The Notebook and, as they say, when something is immortalised, the rest is history. McAdams, armed with great hair, a fantastic smile and a Fine Arts degree, has done funny (The Hot Chick, 2002), scary (Red Eye, 2005), serious (Spotlight, 2015) and superhero-ish (Doctor Strange). Apparently, she was actually born in the same hospital in Ontario as Gosling, everyone's “soul mate” for her.

Fun fact:
If someone asks whether you've seen the film where McAdams plays the love interest of a time traveller, be sure to ask which one – The Time Traveller's Wife (2009), Midnight in Paris (2011) or About Time (2013)? 

Cute quote:
“I wanted to be a secretary; I love paper clips and staplers.” 
Red Eye (2005)
About Time (2013)



Jim Carrey
Age: 55
Born: Newmarket, Ontario, Canada
Breakout roles: Three memorable comedies in 1994 – Ace Ventura: Pet Detective, The Mask, Dumb & Dumber – launched the career of Carrey as the hilarious comic with the rubbery face who could impersonate anyone or anything.


Why you know him:
At his comedic peak, Carrey was the go-to guy for monster-hit comedies, reportedly becoming the first actor to be paid US$20 million a movie. Starting out as a stand-up comic in Toronto, his skills with impressions first landed him a regular sketch spot on television’s In Living Color in the early 1990s. After hitting the big time with his hyper persona, he went on to star in darker comedies with a more sinister edge like The Truman Show (1998); Me, Myself & Irene (2000) and Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind (2004) before going full-blown dark in the psychological thriller, The Number 23 (2007). Audiences didn't really warm up to that change of tone. Personal issues and Carrey's attempts to revive his erstwhile comedic power with flops such as The Incredible Burt Wonderstone (2013) have curtailed the mass appeal he once had.


Fun fact:
Imagine Captain Jack Sparrow as a stand-up comedian. Carrey was apparently considered for the first Pirates of the Caribbean film in 2003 before that iconic role went to Johnny Depp.

Cute quote:
“I have no intention of giving up my Canadian heritage, and all those who loved and supported me.  My upbringing in Canada made me the person I am. I will always be proud to be a Canadian.” 
The Truman Show (1998)
Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind (2004)
Lemony Snicket's A Series of Unfortunate Events (2004)