Actor Ryan Reynolds is married to his Green Lantern co-star, Blake Lively. They have two daughters and serious social media game, frequently sending cheeky messages across Instagram to the delight of their millions of followers and fans. In fact, social media played a large role in the biggest success of Ryan’s career: last year’s Deadpool set international records at the box office and earned him critical praise, professional influence and a star on Hollywood’s Walk of Fame. The movie was stalled in development for over a decade until Reynolds championed it, got it made and then promoted it tirelessly across every social platform. He is widely credited for its success. A sequel is in preproduction. Ryan Reynolds was born and raised in Vancouver. He began acting at the age of 15 in teen-centric made-for-TV movies and sitcoms. In 2002, he had his first starring role in the college comedy Van Wilder. Since then, he has appeared in all genres of film, including romantic comedies, dramas, superhero action and thriller movies. He is this year’s Harvard Hasty Pudding Theatrical Man of the Year and serves on the board of the Michael J. Fox Foundation for Parkinson’s Research.
Eugene Levy currently stars in the hit Canadian television show, Schitt's Creek, that he created with his son Daniel Levy. Schitt's Creek also features Canadian actress Catherine O'Hara, with whom the senior Levy has worked many times over the course of his nearly fifty-year career. He began his career with the Second City Theatre and then SCTV, making his mark with oddball characters and impressions. Levy has appeared in 58 movies, including Armed and Dangerous, A Mighty Wind and Goon. He stole scenes in all eight American Pie movies as unorthodox patriarch Noah Levenstein. In 2008, Eugene Levy was awarded the Governor General’s Performing Arts Award, Canada’s highest honour in the arts. He won two Emmy Awards for his work on SCTV, numerous Canadian Comedy Awards, and a Grammy, in 2004, for a song he co-wrote for the movie A Mighty Wind. Levy is a Member of the Order of Canada and received a star on the Walk of Fame in 2006.
Actress Mary Pickford was born Gladys Louise Smith in 1892. In 1919, she co-founded the United Artists film studio with her frequent director D.W. Griffith and actors Charlie Chaplin and Douglas Fairbanks, whom she married in 1920. At the peak of her career, Pickford was the most famous woman in the world and the highest-paid actress in history. She was one of the founders of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts in 1927. Throughout North America, historical sites, theatres, schools and other esteemed locations have been named for her legacy. She won an Oscar for Coquette and received the Academy’s lifetime achievement award in 1976. She was awarded stars on both the Hollywood and Canadian Walks of Fame. From an early age, Pickford appeared in theatre productions, touring with troupes along with her mother and younger siblings. She adopted her stage name in New York at the behest of her first important Broadway director. In 1909, Mary screen-tested with a director who saw a lot of potential. So much, in fact, that she appeared in 51 films for his studio. Throughout her career, she would appear in more than 200 films, write at least six and produce nearly 50. Mary Pickford died in 1979. She was a true trailblazer for women, both in Hollywood and in business.
Ellen Page is a vocal and influential spokesperson for the LGBTQ movement in North America. In 2014, more than six years after she broke out in the Oscar-nominated movie Juno, Page publicly came out as gay at an event for the Human Rights Campaign (HRC). That year, she was named one of the “40 Under 40” by The Advocate magazine. Vote for Ellen Page as your favourite Canadian actor. The documentary series Gaycation debuted last year. It features Ellen travelling to LGBTQ communities all over the world, in countries like India and Ukraine. In April, the show aired a special episode to study how the new American president will impact LGBTQ rights in the U.S. Ellen Page was born in Halifax in 1987. When she was 10, she began acting in Canadian television shows, such as Pit Pony and Trailer Park Boys. In 2006, Page landed a role in X-Men: The Last Stand, the third in the X-Men franchise. She would appear in the role again in 2014. However, it was her lead role in Juno that established Ellen Page as a household name. She was nominated for every major acting award, including an Oscar, and won an Independent Spirit Award, among others. Since then, she’s appeared in many hit movies like Whip It, To Rome with Love and Christopher Nolan’s Inception.
Comedian John Candy was born in Newmarket, in 1950. He began acting in his early twenties, taking small roles in both film and television. In 1976, he became a member of Second City in Toronto, which turned into Second City Television (SCTV), airing on NBC. He became famous for both his character work and his impersonations. Film roles in movies like The Blues Brothers (with fellow Canadian funny man Dan Aykroyd), Stripes and Splash built his profile as a comedic actor. In 1987, Candy starred alongside Steve Martin in the John Hughes hit Planes, Trains and Automobiles. After that came two more comedy classics—The Great Outdoors and Uncle Buck—as well as some more dramatic turns in movies like Only the Lonely and JFK. John Candy was part-owner of Toronto’s Grey Cup-winning CFL football team, the Argonauts, along with Wayne Gretzky. He died in 1994 of a heart attack while filming the movie Wagons East. It was released posthumously.
Donald Sutherland’s first entertainment gig was as a disc jockey for a local radio station in his hometown of Bridgewater, Nova Scotia when he was just 14. After graduating high school, he studied drama and engineering at the University of Toronto, before doubling down and heading to Britain to pursue acting. There he worked in television before landing a role in the movie The Dirty Dozen in 1967. Some of the most well-known movies he has starred in include Ordinary People, Klute, A Dry White Season and, more recently, the Hunger Games franchise. He has appeared on Broadway twice and in more than 130 television shows and feature films. Donald Sutherland has five children from two of his three marriages. His son Kiefer Sutherland is a famous actor in his own right. The two have acted together just once, in the 2016 western Forsaken. The senior Sutherland has received stars on both the Hollywood and Canadian Walks of Fame, and was made an Officer of the Order of Canada in 1978.
William Shatner is most famous for his role as James T. Kirk, Captain of the Starship Enterprise in the original Star Trek series from 1966 to 1969, in an animated series of the same name, and in seven major motion pictures and seven video games. He has created or co-authored four science-fiction series of novels. He remains a top draw at Comic Con events around the world. William Shatner was born in Montreal in 1931. He studied commerce at McGill University, which is how he entered show business—as the business manager of a theatre, at first. He went on to train as a Shakespearean stage actor in Ottawa before becoming a staple at the renowned Stratford Shakespeare Festival. He was an understudy for Christopher Plummer in Henry V in 1956, taking the stage one night to positive reviews. Shatner’s first major film role was co-starring with Yul Brynner in The Brothers Karamazov in 1958. He went on to appear in many movies, television shows and stage productions before being cast as the iconic Captain Kirk. Later career highlights include starring roles on hit shows like Boston Legal, TJ Hooker and The Practice, and movies such as Miss Congeniality and DodgeBall. He is beloved by dedicated fans and has won multiple Emmy Awards and Golden Globes, as well as the prestigious Governor General's Performing Arts Award in 2011.