Ryan Reynolds and his “merc with a mouth” have returned to the big screen in Deadpool 2, and the film is killing it. The sequel scored more than $300 million worldwide on its opening weekend, enough to end the Avengers: Infinity War three-week reign as box-office king. Fans love Reynolds, and not just for his winning smile and perfect hair, but because he’s proving he’s a superhero both onscreen and off.
In February, he teamed up with the Make-A-Wish Foundation to bring some superhero smiles to kids with critical illnesses. The 41-year-old shared some sweet pictures on Instagram with the caption: “These foundations make dreams come true for a lot of super-brave kids.”
One of the best parts of playing the Big Red Jackass is welcoming @makeawishamerica and @childrenswishfoundation onto set. Deadpool kicked Cancer in the taint, but these kids do it for real every day. These foundations make dreams come true for a lot of of super-brave kids. They also make dreams come true for parents, who just wanna see their kid smile. HUGE thanks to our Prop Master, Dan Sissons, for making sure every kid left with his/her own sword. (Bamboo versions. Not stabby-stabby versions.) ⚔️
A post shared by Ryan Reynolds (@vancityreynolds) on Feb 19, 2018 at 6:46am PST
And it’s not the first time the Deadpool star has reached out and given back. In 2016, he wrote a heartwarming Facebook tribute to a 13-year-old boy, (and Deadpool superfan) who had died of cancer. “Connor was a great friend, a great son, and a light to the people lucky enough to know him,” Reynolds wrote. “I’m grateful I got to orbit Connor’s world for a brief time. Grateful for the pages and pages of hilarious texts between us.”
For three straight years, my friend, Connor McGrath drop-kicked cancer… Not sure how… Maybe the cancer cheated……
Thanks to those on social media who put me in touch with this amazing kid. So glad I got to meet you, Daniel. Rest In Peace. https://t.co/nEBM5dOSci
— Ryan Reynolds (@VancityReynolds) March 9, 2018
The father of two and husband of actress Blake Lively also revealed that he saved his nephew’s life. As he shared on social media: “Years ago, I took a CPR course thru the Red Cross. I ended up saving my nephew’s life because I knew what to do! True story!”
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A post shared by Ryan Reynolds (@vancityreynolds) on Sep 9, 2017 at 7:59am PDT
And just like any true superhero, Reynolds has an arch nemesis of his own: anxiety. The mega celeb has been bravely open about his longtime mental health battle, inspiring and supporting fans in the process — just as he’s done when it comes to being a rising role model for gender parity and work-life balance. Asked in a recent Build interview how he juggles it all, he happily responded: “That’s so nice when you ask a dude this. For me, it’s really about prioritizing. I never want to be on my deathbed, and look back and just go, ‘Oh, I missed out.’ I love being with my kids.”
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