“Can you believe Gerard Butler doesn’t know what Free Guy is?” Reynolds jokingly wrote on Instagram, accompanying a tweet with a headline featuring Butler’s commentary on Sept. 21. In the photo, Reynolds also circled his own tweet, which happened to land underneath the article on his time line.
Referencing his and wife Blake Lively‘s recent promise to match donations to American Civil Liberties Union and the NAACP Legal Defense Fund, he continued, “Also, can you believe that the challenges to democracy have never been greater, and that Blake and I will match your contributions to the @aclu_nationwide and @naacp_ldf? *Order of these questions optimized for the Internet, NOT importance.”
The subject of Reynolds’ work came up in Butler’s interview with UNILAD earlier this month when Butler’s 2009 movie, Gamer, was compared to Reynolds’ latest game-centered flick, Free Guy.
In Gamer, Butler plays a death row prisoner who ends up participating in an online game in which competitors can control human beings as players. Free Guy stars Reynolds as a bank teller who realizes he’s a non-player in an open-world video game. © Provided by E! News Getty Images
In August, film critic Chris Evangelista even joked on Twitter about the “original Free Guy” by sharing a Gamer poster.
“I actually don’t know what Free Guy is,” Butler admitted, as his co-star Alexis Louder (who appears alongside him in his latest film, Copshop) explained to him that it’s Reynolds’ latest. “Oh s–t, is it?,” Butler continued. “I don’t watch Ryan Reynolds’ movies.”
As far as his own experience playing the role of a character living a game world, Butler said he felt his role was a bit ahead of its time in 2009.
“I was hoping it was of the time, that people would get it. I thought it was genius,” he told the outlet of the sci-fi movie. “It could have been executed slightly differently, but I really loved the commentary it was making on where the world was going, especially in gaming and sort of losing ourselves into that world, and technology and man bonding with machine.”
“But, I didn’t feel people really did get it at the time,” he continued. “It didn’t do amazing business. It has become a bit of a cult classic.”