Actor of the Week: Paul Rudd
When it comes to modern day comedy, there is one name that stands out for me, and that name is Paul Rudd, making him an obvious choice for our Actor of the Week segment. Rudd has dabbled in so many types of films and TV but his comedic charm always shines through, being the reason he now plays Scott Lang, aka Ant Man, within the MCU. The theme for the movie, Ant Man is having fun but with an emotive pull to it, which is something I think Rudd is brilliant at. A lot of comedy actors struggle to do anything but make you laugh, but with Rudd, he is able to make you feel several different emotions other than just laughter.
The first time I saw Paul Rudd, which may be the same for many people, was as Mike Hannigan in, probably the biggest TV sitcom ever, Friends. Mike was the boyfriend-turned-husband of Phoebe. Straight away I liked Rudd when I saw him in this show as it highlighted his ability to make you laugh but also care about the character. With Paul playing Mike for 2 seasons it was inevitable he would go on to being an acting success. This, however, was not the first major role Rudd had played, with him actually being a main part in the chick-flick classic Clueless, which is one of those films that you watch today and get that “ah yeah” moment when you see him.
I feel I speak for a lot of people when I say that Rudd became an acting favourite after his role in Anchorman, seeing Rudd play ladies’ man, Brian Fantana, a member of the Channel 4 News Team and a close friend to Lead Anchor Ron Burgundy, played by former Actor of the Week, Will Ferrell. Anchorman is a brilliant comedy about male dominance in the 70’s and the rise of women in the workplace, seeing Anchorman Ron being challenged for lead anchor by Christina Applegate's Veronica Corningstone. Rudd is a huge part of this film’s success with his ability of making people laugh in full force. Rudd reprised this role in the sequel to Anchorman.
Paul Rudd went on to become friends with comedy director Judd Apatow, seeing him star in several films of his, such as Knocked Up and This Is 40, but the one film many people will remember him from, and one of Judd Apatow’s best films, is The 40 Year-Old Virgin. The 40 Year-Old Virgin sees Rudd play David, a close friends of lead character and the virgin himself, Andy, played by comedy legend Steve Carell. Andy is, what it says on the tin, a 40 year-old virgin who decides to pump off the pressure of trying to get lucky. With the aid of some of his closest friends, Andy gets there in the end but not without a few speed bumps.
I cannot write this without mentioning his film I Love You, Man, with it being a film me and my family love, constantly quoting “slappa da bass man” to each other on a regular basis. This film goes under the radar when you talk about Rudd films, but it is a comedy I highly recommend.
The one thing you may have noticed within this blog, is that all of the major successful films Rudd has been in, he plays more of a supporting role than a lead, until he managed to land the earlier-mentioned role of Scott Lang, aka Ant Man, within the MCU. Lang is a thief who’s life is turned around by scientist Hank Pimm. Pimm allows Scott to wear a special suit that he has created which allows him to shrink to the size of an Ant. With Scott donning this suit, he takes it as an opportunity to turn his life around and do good in the world, by saving it. Rudd getting the opportunity to be part of the MCU is a huge boost in his career. Rudd plays this character perfectly and is the lure to this movie, as, if it wasn’t for him, I am not sure how well the film would have done. He is an incredibly likeable actor, making anything he is in a success. Rudd went on to playing Lang in the Captain America sequel, Civil War, and is set to play our micro-hero in the 4th Avengers film, inevitably allowing him to be part of one of the most successful films ever.
This summer we are privileged to get another Ant Man movie which I am looking forward to, but to be honest I am always excited about a film that stars Rudd, as 60% of the time, he works, every time!