Sure, we know him from movies like “Clueless” and the “Ant-Man” franchise, but there’s a softer, sweeter side to him that’s just as captivating. From random acts of kindness to making generous donations to charities, Paul Rudd is the best. So, sit back, relax, and get ready for some heartwarming stories and fun facts about everyone’s favorite Hollywood hero.
He Studied in England
Although Paul Rudd spent most of his childhood in Kansas, both of his parents were from England. As a result, Paul always felt a connection to English culture. While studying theater in college, he was able to fulfill a life-long dream. He spent a semester abroad in England studying classical theater.
During his three months across the pond, he studied Jacobean drama and theater at the British American Drama Academy in Oxford. The drama school is associated with Yale University. So, you know, no big deal. Also, Paul is in good company — some past students include Chadwick Boseman and Paul Giamatti.
He Had Serious Growing Pains
It might be a relief to know that puberty hit Paul Rudd in the same way it hits all of us: hard. In a 2009 interview with "GQ Magazine," Paul admits that he had pretty bad acne as a teenager. This comes as a surprise to many, considering that his skin appears so smooth and ageless these days.
Paul admits that, while he didn’t have the worst acne ever, it was pretty bad. Worse, he refused to pop his zits because he feared doing so would cause scarring. His fear of popping them probably paid off in the long run because his skin is pretty much flawless.
Apatow's Feelings About Their Friendship
Filmmaker Judd Apatow and Paul Rudd are long-time collaborators and real-life friends. Although Judd has been close friends with Paul for many years, one thing bothers him about their relationship. His big problem is that Paul doesn’t seem to age.
It’s common internet knowledge that Paul Rudd is ageless. However, it’s even more apparent to close friends like Judd. In an interview, Judd said the “worst part” of being friends with Paul is that he looks the same as he did 20 years ago. On the other hand, Judd says he looks old enough to be Paul’s dad.
Paul’s Touching SNL Tribute
Paul Rudd had a close relationship with his father, so he was naturally grief-stricken when he passed away from cancer. Shortly after his passing, Paul was invited to host “Saturday Night Live” for the very first time. On November 15, 2008, Paul graced the SNL studio stage.
During his time as a host on the show, he was able to pay a touching tribute to his father. Paul wore his father’s shirt from the Navy to feel close to his memory. At one point, Paul grabbed his shirt with both hands and blew a kiss toward the sky.
Comedy Was Never His Goal
We all know and love Paul Rudd as the adorably endearing goofball in comedies like “Anchorman” and “Parks and Recreation.” However, becoming a comedian was never Paul Rudd’s career goal. He has revealed in interviews that he never intended only to do comedy.
He is trained in classical theater and studied it in college. He fell into comedy by landing early roles in “Clueless” and “Wet Hot American Summer.” He has gotten to play some dramatic roles during his career. However, fans know him for his more light-hearted work, which now includes "Ant-Man" in the Marvel Cinematic Universe.
He’s Still a Hometown Boy
Paul Rudd spent part of his childhood growing up in Kansas City, Missouri. He still holds fond memories of the city and maintains a connection with it all these years later. His mother, Gloria, still lives in the city, but that’s not the only reason Paul returns occasionally.
Paul and fellow Kansas City native Jason Sudeikis host a charity poker game annually to benefit a local children’s hospital. One year Paul, Jason, and actor Rob Riggle were special guests at a Royals baseball game to drum up publicity for the charity event. Paul even got to throw the opening pitch.
His Awkward Moment on “Friends”
Unless you’re a die-hard “Friends” fan, you probably forgot that Paul Rudd had a recurring role on the show. He played Mike Hannigan, Phoebe’s love interest toward the end of the series. In a weird twist of events, the writers included his character in the very last episode.
Paul later said that it felt very awkward to be included in the last episode. Everyone was very emotional during the final filming, and he felt like he was intruding on a personal moment between the “Friends” actors. He even tried making a joke with a sobbing Jennifer Aniston, which fell flat.
Paul’s parents, Gloria and Michael, grew up in England. However, Paul discovered that both of his parents are descended from Ashkenazi Jewish immigrants, originally from Belarus, Russia, and Poland. This detailed information was revealed in a 2017 episode of “Finding Your Roots.” In addition, “Rudd” is not his family’s original surname.
Paul’s paternal grandfather changed the family surname from “Rudnitzky” to “Rudd” out of an unfortunate necessity. At the time, no one wanted to hire Jewish immigrants. As a result, Paul’s grandfather shortened his last name to increase his chances of landing a job to support his family.
"Friends" Put Him on the Map
Paul Rudd played a secondary character during the last two seasons of “Friends,” and it ended up making him way more recognizable. Before he played the role of Phoebe’s boyfriend, Mike, he had experienced some minor success in movies like “Clueless” and “Wet Hot American Summer.” However, he took the “Friends” role because he knew it would give him way more exposure.
What was supposed to be a quick guest spot turned into 18 episodes. This minor role in one of the biggest sitcoms of the time transformed him from “that guy” to an actor that fans immediately recognized on the street.
He’s a Private Guy
Some celebrities love having their business splashed all over social media. Paul Rudd is not one of those celebrities. Paul doesn’t have any social media presence whatsoever. He’s a very low-key, private actor who likes to keep his personal life, well, personal.
He’s been married to his wife, Julie Yaeger, since 2003, and the couple has two children together. Although the two occasionally appear together at public events, they prefer to stay out of the limelight. On top of that, Paul doesn’t share too many details about his kids. This low-key, relatable need for privacy is probably why we all love him so much.
His Kids Keep Him Grounded
Many of us have probably wondered what it would be like to have famous parents. According to Paul Rudd, it’s not that impressive. He’s shared that his two kids, Jack and Darby, don’t care that their dad is a super-famous actor. They’re hardly ever impressed with his work.
When Paul first told Jack that he would be playing Ant-Man in an upcoming Marvel movie, he was quickly called out on it. His teenage son was not impressed and informed Paul that Ant-Man wasn’t even a cool superhero. At least Paul can depend on his kids to keep him humble.
He Worked With Courtney Love
Paul Rudd became a household name later on in his career. However, he was acting long before he hit it big in Judd Apatow’s comedies. One of his lesser-known films is “200 Cigarettes,” which has a surprising ensemble cast. In the film, Paul co-starred alongside big names such as Ben Affleck, Christina Ricci, and Dave Chappelle.
Paul acted alongside Courtney Love in most scenes. The two played best friends and love interests during the film. Even though Paul worked in an ensemble cast, he didn’t get to meet any of the other actors besides Courtney.
A Scary Encounter
We all know and love Paul Rudd’s character in the 90s comedy “Clueless.” However, most people don’t know that Paul had a terrifying encounter while filming in Los Angeles. After eating out with a friend, he was mugged on his way back to his car. The thief came from nowhere and went so far as to hold a weapon to Paul’s head.
Paul later described how he felt eerily calm during the whole encounter. The thief made off with his backpack and was never caught. Thankfully, no one was hurt. However, it must have been extremely weird to show up to work the next day as if everything was fine.
He Crashed His Way Out of LA
Paul Rudd was living in LA while filming “Clueless.” However, he got the sense that the City of Angels wasn’t the place for him. During the shoot, Paul had some unfortunate luck with his cars, which eventually convinced him to move to New York City.
His bad luck started when his first car was ruined in a hit-and-run. As anyone in LA knows, a car is essential for getting around the city. So, he borrowed a friend’s car out of desperation. After being in two more dangerous car accidents, Paul took it as a sign that he should get out of town.
He Loves British Cuisine
Even though Paul grew up in the States, his parents are both originally from England. As a result, Paul was raised on classic British cuisine like Yorkshire pudding. Sunday roasts, tea, and crumpets were mainstays in his family’s kitchen. He also still has a soft spot for British snacks, like Cadbury Fingers and McVitie’s Digestives.
Like any good Englishman, Paul is also very serious about his tea. He’s always been a big tea drinker and won’t settle for less than the best. Forget Lipton Tea. It’s all about some hot PG Tips tea with a splash of milk.
A Surprising Family Reveal
Paul Rudd discovered a surprising fact about his parents when he guest starred on an episode of “Finding Your Roots.” It turns out that his parents, Gloria and Michael, were second cousins. Paul had no idea about this, but he took the news in stride by joking, “Does this make my son also my uncle?”
Although marrying a second cousin may sound shocking, this doesn’t make Paul’s parents first-degree family members. Since his parents were second cousins, that means they share a great-grandparent somewhere in their family tree. It’s still pretty surprising by today’s standards, but not unheard of.
He Keeps His Culture Alive
Although Paul Rudd is not a practicing Jew, he still feels connected to this part of his heritage. In certain interviews, Paul has shared that his upbringing was culturally Jewish, which has influenced his outlook on the world. In addition, he was bar mitzvahed when he turned thirteen.
In a strange turn of events, he had this rite of passage in Ontario, Canada, instead of his hometown of Kansas City. He explained to Stephen Colbert in a 2018 interview that he had a bunch of family members out in Ontario, so it was more cost-effective to go north rather than ask everyone to fly to the States.
He Used to Be a DJ
Every actor has an origin story full of odd jobs they used to work to make ends meet. Before Paul Rudd hit it big in Hollywood, he made his living as a DJ. No, we don’t mean a nightclub DJ who wears sunglasses indoors. It was much more wholesome than that. Paul used to work as a DJ for bat and bar mitzvahs while starting as an actor in LA.
During the early 90s, Paul brought his infectious energy to the dance floor for many awkward teenagers participating in this traditional rite of passage. There’s even some surviving footage floating around on YouTube, revealing a fashionable Paul Rudd helping kids cheat in limbo.
He Was Teased as a Kid
Paul Rudd may be one of the most beloved stars of our time, but that doesn’t mean he was always popular. Growing up Jewish in the United States Bible Belt made him stick out like a sore thumb. To cope and avoid getting beat up by bullies, Paul often resorted to self-deprecating humor.
As an adult, Paul realizes that hiding behind humor is still ingrained in his psyche. While dealing with trauma by making a joke might not be the healthiest approach, it’s what he did to survive in a community where he was one of the only Jewish kids.
Paul’s Not That Nice
Paul Rudd has a reputation as America’s hottest “nice guy.” However, he doesn’t agree with that label. He finds it kind of passive-aggressive. He’s explained in interviews that no one can be completely nice all of the time. He thinks the public perception of his “niceness” stems from the fact that he is very private and not on social media.
In his own words, he’s “probably not as nice as everybody might think.” We respectfully disagree with Paul. The fact that he has to explicitly explain that he’s not nice is just further proof of his kindness. Sorry to say, but we’re not convinced, Paul.
The Best Meet-Cute
Paul Rudd and his wife, Julie Yeager, seem to have a very down-to-earth marriage. The notoriously private couple avoids all the usual Hollywood drama, which fans find very refreshing. The two met back in the 90s when Paul first moved to New York. Julie was the first person he met when he moved to the Big Apple.
The two met through Paul’s publicist shortly before “Clueless” came out in 1995. Paul was running late for an interview. Julie, who worked in the office, offered to drop his bags off at a friend’s apartment. A few days later, he asked her out to lunch. The rest is history.
He Has a Cute Side Business
Paul Rudd and his wife, Julie, have careers in the entertainment industry. However, they are collaborators in another business venture that has nothing to do with Hollywood. The two co-own a candy shop near their home in Rhinebeck, New York, alongside “One Tree Hill” actress Hilarie Burton.
After the original owner passed away, Paul and Julie were inspired to purchase Samuel’s Sweet Shop. The boutique is a staple of the Rhinebeck community, and the famous couple is pretty involved in the day-to-day operations. You can even order a candy sampler pack featuring a marshmallow cake with a picture of Paul Rudd on it.
Paul’s Marriage Became a Movie
Paul Rudd and Julie Yeager have been married for decades, which is a lifetime by Hollywood standards. Paul keeps his family out of the spotlight and always comments on how un-scandalous his personal life is, which is probably why fans find him so relatable.
However, Paul and Julie’s marriage served as silver screen material for some of his movies. Certain scenes in “Knocked Up” were inspired by Paul’s real-life experiences. In addition, the film’s sequel, “This Is 40,” directly drew from the couple’s long-standing relationship. Director Judd Apatow worked with Paul to realistically depict marriage, warts, and all.
His True Thoughts About “Anchorman”
Paul Rudd played the hilariously over-confident character of Brian Fantana in the 2004 hit “Anchorman.” Many fans consider Fantana to be one of his most memorable roles, and Paul agrees. He enjoyed playing the character, and he genuinely loved the script when he first read it.
Paul loved the “Anchorman” script so much that he read it more than once. According to Paul, a captivating script that is worthy of a re-read is extremely rare, especially when it comes to comedies. The only other script he re-read is “Wet Hot American Summer,” where he plays teenage dirtbag Andy Fleckner.
The Most Infamous “Anchorman” Scene
“Anchorman” has some of the most hilarious scenes in recent comedy history. However, there was one particular scene that Paul Rudd and his co-stars struggled to get through, and it annoyed the crew to no end.
The infamous scene shows Steve Carrell’s character, Brick, chowing down on what he thinks is a falafel hot dog with cinnamon and bacon on top. It’s quickly revealed that his “falafel” is an old coffee filter, making the scene as hilarious as it is disgusting. Paul and his co-stars were so grossed out by how real the coffee filter looked that they broke character every time they tried to film.
His Life-Changing Meeting With Stan Lee
Paul Rudd’s latest foray into acting has been the recurring role of Ant-Man in the Marvel Cinematic Universe. Although some Marvel fans thought a feature film about the lesser-known superhero was kind of odd, Paul was all about it. He felt confident taking on the role, thanks largely to creator Stan Lee.
Paul got the chance to meet Stan Lee before he passed away. According to Paul, Stan was ecstatic that they were turning Ant-Man into a feature film superhero. The legendary comic book creator told Paul that the movie would finally depict the hero as he always envisioned.
Being a Marvel superhero isn’t always sunshine and roses. During the filming of “Ant-Man and the Wasp: Quantumania,” Paul Rudd and the rest of the crew had an unfortunate experience while working on a UK-based studio stage. Although a lot of the film was shot using LED screens, the floor of the soundstage had to be covered in dirt for a realistic effect.
During the course of filming one day, everyone on set noticed a bad smell. They ignored it and powered through, but by the second day of filming, the smell had only gotten worse. It turns out that the “dirt” on the floor was actually manure. Paul had been running and rolling around in the stinky mess for hours, and he had no idea.
Paul and Selena: The Odd Couple
Paul Rudd is famously best friends with Hollywood funny guys like Judd Apatow and Will Ferrell. However, many fans are surprised to learn that he’s really good friends with an unlikely celebrity: Selena Gomez. How did two stars with such a big age gap and wildly different fan bases become so close? Well, their friendship started when they worked on “The Fundamentals of Caring” together.
Funnily enough, Paul had no idea how famous Selena was when they first started working together. He was taken aback by her grace and friendliness despite the pressures of fame, and the two formed a close rapport.
A “Dreamy” Guest Star
Paul Rudd is a triple threat. He’s ageless, hilarious, and an absolute cutie pie. This is basically why he was cast as Phoebe’s love interest in “Friends.” Leslie Litt was the casting director for the sitcom. She later admitted that she and the producers had considered casting Paul for quite some time.
When they were hiring for the role of Mike Hannigan, they saw their chance. Although they had a few other actors try out for the part, Leslie had her heart set on hiring Paul. She unashamedly admits that the only note she wrote during his audition was “dreamy.” True that, Leslie.
A Certain Food Weirds Him Out
Paul Rudd was a guest on the online show “Hot Ones” in 2019. Although the show usually consists of celebrity guests eating hot sauce on chicken wings, Paul opted for cauliflower wings instead. This choice spurred the public to speculate whether or not Paul was a vegetarian.
Although Paul is still very much a carnivore, he chose to eat cauliflower wings because he wanted to support vegetarians on the show. Plus, he gets “a little weirded out” by chicken wings. Maybe it’s the tiny bones or the messy nature of the food. Regardless of the reason, Paul held his own in the “Hot Ones” episode.
He Did Hardcore Training for Ant-Man
While Paul Rudd is considered a heartthrob, he’s not known as the burly type. That doesn’t mean he was exempt from hardcore training for the role of Ant-Man. The star had to stick to a strict diet and workout regimen to prepare for “Ant-Man and the Wasp: Quantumania.”
His diet consisted of a lot of protein, including a daily serving of eggs, protein shakes, and a lot of salmon. However, he credits sleep as the most important part of his training routine. He often tried to get eight hours of sleep every night instead of waking up early to work out.
He Didn’t Want to Be Josh
Josh Lucas, Cher’s ex-step-brother in “Clueless,” was one of Paul’s first break-out roles. However, Josh wasn’t the actor’s first choice when he auditioned for the film. Although the producers invited Paul to try out for the part of Josh, he thought the role of Murray was a better fit.
Paul was interested in playing comedic characters, and Josh’s role as the love interest didn’t appeal to him. The producers let him read some of Murray’s lines during his audition, but it seems their hearts were already set. He landed the part of Josh, and actor Donald Faison got the Murray role.
He Has Celebrity Fans
Paul Rudd might be the nicest guy in Hollywood. No other celebrity has ever uttered a negative word about him. In fact, his fellow celebrities are fans of his. Julia Roberts is a self-proclaimed fan of his comedy. The two stars worked together in the Broadway play “Three Days of Rain,” and Julia had nothing but kind things to say.
Julia admires Paul’s subtle sense of humor and unassuming approach to stardom. His low-key demeanor definitely makes him an “unexpected movie star” by today’s standards. If a glowing opinion from Julia Roberts doesn’t cement Paul Rudd as a top actor, we don’t know what does.
He’s Grateful for His Success
It can’t be easy to be an instantly recognizable celebrity. The lack of privacy and intense pressure must be a lot to handle, but Paul Rudd is still very thankful for his success. While he finds fame to be a weird experience, he also acknowledges that it has a lot of perks.
In interviews, he’s hinted at how boring it is when other celebs complain about their fame. He’s never named any names because he’s a gentleman, but he’s definitely not amused by whiny famous people. Overall, he’s grateful for his success because it has given him lots of opportunities to see and do so many different things.
He Cares About Voting
If you need proof that Paul Rudd is the most wholesome celebrity on the planet, look no further than the 2020 election. Paul went out in the pouring rain in Brooklyn, New York, to hand out cookies to voters who were waiting in line.
He didn’t hand out cookies as a publicity stunt. There were no professional camera people following him around. The only reason we know about his kind act is that someone posted about it on Twitter. On top of that, Paul made sure every voter was satisfied with their cookie choice before he moved on to the next person. What a good guy!
He Loves Indian Food
Paul Rudd definitely has great taste in food and friends. This unassuming star has been known to pop into restaurants unannounced and without much fanfare. Once, he showed up to eat at an Indian restaurant in London with a famous friend in tow.
He surprised chef Asma Khan by showing up at her restaurant, Darjeeling Express, with none other than Dan Levy. The two actors ordered thali because, according to Asma, they wanted to try everything on the menu. Asma was lucky enough to snap a photo with the two stars, who looked like they were thoroughly enjoying their meal.
He’s the Coolest Customer
On top of being the nicest actor ever, Paul Rudd is also the coolest customer of all time. Someone on Reddit shared a real-life encounter they had with the actor that truly surprised them. This guy who worked at CVS had a rough shift when Paul unexpectedly popped in to buy something.
The guy’s manager was giving him a hard time. Paul noticed, so he used his star power for good. He asked the manager to take over for the cashier because he needed help bringing his purchase to his car. The “help” became a coffee break with Paul Rudd in the parking lot.
He Commits to the Bit
Seth Rogan proved that Paul truly is nice, even in the middle of pulling a prank. He shared on Twitter one of the most hilarious memories of their nearly 20-year friendship. Seth had scheduled a massage in Vegas. At the end of the session, he realized something was very wrong.
He opened his eyes and was face-to-face with none other than Paul Rudd. It turns out that Paul had tried to prank Seth, but it back-fired. Paul had convinced the masseuse to let him take over because he thought Seth would immediately notice. Well, he didn’t, so Paul committed to the prank and completed the whole massage.
Paul’s Secret Talent
Paul is a man of many talents. On top of acting, writing, and producing, he is also incredibly charming and friendly. But that’s not all he can do. He has a secret talent that not many people can replicate. Aisling Bea, his co-star in “Living With Yourself,” learned about this secret talent during their first meeting.
While filming their Netflix show, Paul needed a snack. According to Aisling, he then casually pulled out an apple and split it in half– with his bare hands. As if he couldn’t get any more perfect. Paul needs to leave some crumbs of talent for the rest of us because it’s not fair.
“Mac and Me”
When Paul Rudd commits to a bit, he’s in it for the long haul. Paul started a bit with Conan O’Brien back in 2004, and it’s the bane of Conan’s existence. Every time Paul is a guest on Conan’s show, he inevitably plays the same cheesy scene from “Mac and Me” in place of any actual promotional content.
Recently, Paul stopped by the “Conan O’Brien Needs a Friend” podcast to promote a new Audible series. After going into great detail about his new project, he plays a promotional clip. As you can probably guess, it was the audio from the “Mac and Me” clip.
He Wanted a “Friends” Spin-Off
In a 2004 interview with Conan O’Brien, Paul spilled the beans and confessed that he wanted his own “Friends” spin-off. Paul, of course, played Phoebe’s boyfriend, Mike Hannigan, during the tail-end of the famous show. Paul pitched a spin-off starring himself called “Friend.” According to Paul, when he pitched it to producers, “they said... they didn’t say anything, actually.”
Now, this was obviously a joke, but we’re sure there are plenty of Paul Rudd fans out there who would have tuned in to watch such a show. He could probably still pull it off today, considering he looks nearly exactly the same as he did two decades ago!
He Literally Doesn’t Age
As we all know, Paul Rudd doesn’t age. Today, he looks literally the same, if not younger, as he did when he was in his twenties. How is this possible? While Paul hasn’t revealed if he has access to the Fountain of Youth, he has given some pointers and advice about how he keeps his youthful appearance.
Paul has said that he maintains a regimen of cardio and weights. In addition, he has credited sleep as one of the most important aspects of staying healthy. Honestly, it sounds like Paul scored a lucky combination of good genes and enjoying things in moderation. If only we could all be so lucky.
He Was a Long-Time Smoker
Considering Paul Rudd’s glowing, ever-youthful skin, many are surprised when they learn that he was a long-time smoker. Smoking is known to negatively affect the skin and cause premature aging, so this fact seems very ironic. At one point, he realized that he needed to quit his addiction to cigarettes because it was negatively affecting his health.
However, he didn’t quit cold turkey. Instead, he enrolled in hypnotherapy to quit smoking. While hypnotherapy might not be everyone’s cup of tea, the method worked out for him. In general, he recommends that smokers who want to quit take it slow instead of looking for a quick fix.
The Sexiest Man Alive
Fans everywhere rejoiced when Paul Rudd was selected as "People Magazine’s" Sexiest Man Alive in 2021. This prestigious title was a no-brainer, considering how adorable and charming the star is on and off the screen. In classic Paul Rudd fashion, he brought humor to the situation and didn’t let it get to his head.
In an interview with Stephen Colbert, Paul revealed that he discovered his new title in a very mundane way. He simply got an email about it. He was in complete shock but said he was “honored to be recognized for something besides my talent and humility.” That’s the spirit.
A “Clueless” Reboot
There have been rumors swirling about a possible “Clueless” reboot. Although there are not that many details, the TV series is supposed to be about Dionne becoming the new popular girl after Cher disappears. Whether or not Paul Rudd is set to come back is up in the air.
Of course, Paul famously played Josh in the original 1995 film. The reboot producers could make their lives easier by just casting him to play the same role. After all, he looks the same as he did way back in the 90s. No one would be able to tell the difference.
He’s Nice to Fans
Some celebrities are notoriously rude in real life. Paul Rudd is not one of those celebrities. Poet Charlotte Wilder discovered this first-hand while on the same flight to Kansas City as the actor. She got up the nerve to say hi, and she didn’t regret it. Paul was super nice and talked to her for a few minutes.
Charlotte later tweeted that even though she was a little nervous and starstruck, he was a total gentleman and was very polite. Approaching a celebrity is always nerve-wracking, but this story is further proof that Paul Rudd is one of the most down-to-earth guys out there.
Ant-Man’s Favorite Comics
Paul Rudd finally became a bonafide superhero in 2015 as Marvel’s Ant-Man. However, his love of comic book characters goes way back to his childhood. Instead of rattling off the usual American comics that many of us grew up with, Paul has a soft spot for some classically British comics.
Growing up with English parents influenced his comic book selection. He grew up loving English and Scottish comics like “Desperate Dan,” “The Bash Street Kids,” and “The Beano” magazines. In addition, he loved “Dennis the Menace.” But don’t get it twisted. The American version of “Dennis the Menace” is completely different from the British version.
Fond Memories of His Dad
Paul has credited his dad as the reason he started loving comedy. He has fond memories of his dad cracking up on the couch while watching Monty Python sketches, which definitely influenced his own sense of humor.
As a kid, many of his goofy antics stemmed from a desire to get more positive attention from his parents. He would dance like a maniac and perform for anyone willing to watch. If you have ever witnessed Paul’s goofy dance moves in a movie, know that they are the same moves he’s been doing since he was four.
He Tried to Write a Sitcom
Not every project can be a smashing success. Back in the early 2000s, Paul Rudd co-wrote a sitcom called “Party Down” that only lasted two seasons. The show followed a group of aspiring actors who work for a catering company in Los Angeles. The show had a solid cast, including Adam Scott of “Parks and Recreation” fame.
Despite the positive reviews and cult-following, “Party Down” was quickly canceled. In a surprising twist of fate for fans of the show, it was renewed for a third season over ten years later. Although Paul wasn’t involved in the writing, he was still an executive producer.
He Doesn’t Like to Be Typecast
Typecasting is a common pitfall that many actors experience. Paul Rudd is no exception. Audiences know him as the lovable, non-threatening “boyfriend” type of character in countless romcoms and comedies. Naturally, acting in the same type of role can get boring for an actor. That’s why Paul jumped at the chance to play a superhero.
When Paul accepted the role of Ant-Man, he knew people would be surprised. He knows he’s not the typical “macho man” type that people associate with superheroes. However, Paul has masterfully played into his lovable nerdiness and made the Ant-Man character all his own.
His Kids Don’t Watch His Movies
Paul and his wife, Julie, have two kids that they mostly keep out of the spotlight. In classic dad fashion, Paul didn’t let his kids see any of his films until they were much older. In fact, his son hadn’t seen any of his movies until 2015, when the first “Ant-Man” premiered.
Paul took his son to the “Ant-Man” movie premiere to witness his Marvel debut. He described feeling both nervous and proud at the same time to have his son finally see one of his movies. It must have been a surreal experience, but we’re sure his kids think he’s the coolest dad ever.
He’s Definitely 6’1”
Even celebrities feel insecure about their appearance from time to time. Believe it or not, Paul Rudd wishes he could change one thing about how he looks. In an interview with Stephen Colbert, Paul jokingly said that he wishes he was 6’2” instead of 6”1”. Here’s the kicker, though. Paul is actually even shorter than that, standing at 5’10.”
See, it's not just your Tinder match. Even famous people exaggerate their height sometimes. Many men feel the need to add a few inches to their real height, and Paul is no exception. Turns out he’s more relatable than we ever imagined.
Paul Rudd, the Action Figure
When a celebrity plays a superhero, they’re bound to get their own action-figure toy. Paul Rudd’s rendition of Ant-Man is no different. However, when the final Marvel action figure was revealed, he was less than amused. Conan O’Brien got Paul’s hot take on how he really felt about being made into an action figure.
For whatever reason, the toy designers gave Ant-Man a smarmy smirk that is absolutely terrifying. They tried to capture Paul’s aloof charm, but they didn’t fully succeed. Paul said he had no input in the making of the toy, which is probably why it looks nothing like him.
Mark Ruffalo Is a Super Fan
You’d think that celebrities are above being starstruck by other actors, right? It turns out they’re not immune to the star power of Paul Rudd, either. Mark Ruffalo jokingly fangirled over Paul on the Comic-Con red carpet one year. Mark was walking by while Paul was being interviewed, and he dramatically mouthed, “Is that Paul Rudd?!”
Paul was so wrapped up in the interview that he didn’t even notice Mark’s fandom moment, making it all the more hilarious. A few years later, Paul returned the favor by fangirling over Mark in the exact same way on another red-carpet premiere.
He’s Against Bullying
During Brody Riddler’s last day of middle school, his classmates refused to sign his yearbook. His mom posted about how Brody’s classmates had been alienating and bullying him all year, which went viral. When Paul Rudd learned about what happened to Brody, whose favorite superhero happens to be Ant-Man, he decided to do something about it.
Paul arranged a personal FaceTime call with Brody and his mom. As if that wasn’t cool enough, he followed the call up with a handwritten note and an autographed Ant-Man helmet. Paul’s sweet note contained words of encouragement for Brody. As if we didn’t already love him enough!
Paul’s Humble Beginnings
Succeeding in Hollywood is no easy feat, and many celebrities have stories of skimping and saving when they were just starting out. When Paul first moved to Los Angeles, he relied on the kindness of friends to get by. He spent some time living in his friend’s apartment while saving up for his own space.
He even confessed to sleeping on towels in the kitchen so he wouldn’t be in his friend’s way. Once he was able to move out, funds were still sparse. He was so broke that he had to furnish his new apartment with an old mattress he found by a dumpster.
He’s a Dad First
Paul may have been voted “Sexiest Man Alive,” but he doesn’t necessarily see himself that way. He has constantly remarked that the biggest part of his identity is being a husband and father. And it’s true. He’s been married to Julie Yeager for years, and they have two kids together.
When he’s not working, he prefers to hang out with his family in New York and do regular dad things. By “dad things,” we mean embarrassing his kids with cheesy jokes and taking them trick-or-treating. His down-to-earth demeanor and love of his family are definitely two reasons people love him.
He Admires Paul Newman
Paul Rudd co-wrote and starred in the movie “Role Models,” which prompted many people to wonder if Paul had a real-life role model that he looked up to. As it turns out, Paul’s role model is another famous Paul. In an interview during the “Role Models” press tour, Paul revealed that his personal hero is legendary actor Paul Newman.
Paul Rudd says he admires Newman because he contributed a lot of positive change to the world before he passed away. Newman was known for his tireless charity work, including creating the Newman’s Own food brand, which donates all profits to charity.
"Clueless" Was His Big Break
Older fans of Paul Rudd most likely first fell in love with him when they saw him play Josh in “Clueless.” This break-out role almost wasn’t his, however. As with any big movie role, a ton of other actors tried out for the part. Some of them are pretty big names today.
Among Paul’s competitors were actors like Ben Affleck and Zach Braff. It’s wild to think how different “Clueless” would be without Paul’s boy-next-door charm. Thankfully, the casting directors passed on Ben and Zach and took a chance on the one and only Paul Rudd.
In the Writer’s Room
As we all know, Paul Rudd is more than just a pretty face. He is a man of many talents, and screenwriting is one of his lesser-known skills. In fact, Avengers fans are usually surprised to learn that Paul co-wrote the first two “Ant-Man” films.
His writing process for both “Ant-Man” and “Ant-Man and the Wasp” involved adding more jokes, quips, and quirks. Co-stars and co-writers have spoken glowingly of Paul’s writing talent. Charmingly, he is not doing it in order to get more screen time for his own characters. Instead, he makes sure everyone gets enough lines and feels included.
He Caught the Screenwriting Bug
By now, you know that although Paul Rudd is an actor first, he also dabbles in producing and screenwriting. He has four screenplay credits under his belt, with 2008’s “Role Models” being the first. Paul enjoyed contributing to the script, calling it an “enriching and fun” experience.
The film, which follows two guys who have to perform community service after various offenses, stars Paul and Sean William Scott. Interestingly, Paul was commissioned to rewrite the original script. Once you know Paul had a hand in writing the movie, you can totally understand how it has a certain goofball charm alongside the bro humor.
He Met His Hero
Paul Rudd has stated in multiple interviews that he admires and looks up to Paul Newman. In addition to being a fan, he was lucky enough to work with the world-renowned actor. In 2000, before Paul Rudd was a household name, he starred alongside Newman in a play.
The play, titled “Ancestral Voices,” was performed at the Westport Country Playhouse in Connecticut. Thankfully, meeting his hero wasn’t disappointing. Newman invited Paul over to his home for lunch one day, which is probably a core memory for him at this point. Newman even made salad dressing from scratch. Can you imagine being a fly on the wall at that lunch?
He’s Picky About His Acting Jobs
A lot of actors fall into the trap of taking on roles that they don’t really care about in exchange for a big paycheck. It’s definitely a way to succeed in Hollywood, but Paul Rudd isn’t interested in that. From the get-go, he has only accepted roles that he finds interesting. This is a huge privilege, but it’s definitely worked out for him.
Although he studied drama and theater in college, Paul is generally attracted to comedic roles. He chooses to work on movies he would be interested in seeing. That way, he knows he’ll be passionate about the job.
His Favorite Sports Teams
Paul Rudd is a Kansas City guy through and through. His hometown holds a special spot in his heart, and his mother reportedly still lives there. In addition to hosting an annual fundraiser, Paul often returns to Kansas City to root for his favorite sports teams.
Paul’s a diehard Chiefs and Royals fan and is known to attend some home games. He’s passed on his team loyalty to his son, who attended the 2020 Super Bowl game with him. Thankfully, their loyalty to the Chiefs paid off because their team won for the first time in 50 years.
He Can Be Dramatic
Most of us know Paul as an all-American funny guy, but he has some dramatic acting chops as well. Paul has starred in some dramas, and indie films during his career, including “The Catcher Was a Spy,” which came out at the 2018 Sundance Film Festival.
The movie stars Paul as Moe Berg, a baseball player turned spy during World War II. The film is based on a true story and also stars Paul Giamatti and Sienna Miller. Although the indie film received mixed reviews, it’s an interesting movie to watch if you want to see Paul Rudd in a more dramatic role.
He Made Marvel Mad
Paul Rudd is a pretty humble guy and doesn’t particularly enjoy talking about himself in interviews. However, his self-effacing approach to interviews backfired on him when he was first cast as Ant-Man. During some promo for the new superhero film, Paul told a story about how his son wasn’t very impressed with his dad’s new job.
Marvel didn’t find the comments to be very funny. Paul actually got in trouble for trying to bring some humor to the fact that Ant-Man was a lesser-known superhero. He meant the joke to be a jab at himself, not the Avengers franchise, but Marvel didn’t see it that way.
A Simple Twist of Fate
Did you know Steve Martin is the reason Paul Rudd and Judd Apatow met and became best friends? Let us explain. Paul Rudd is a lifelong fan of Steve Martin and his humor. While at a dinner party, he talked about how he always loved Steve Martin’s off-beat character name “Gern Blanston.”
Another person at the party immediately recognized that fake name as the inspiration behind Judd Apatow’s e-mail address. They passed along the information to Paul, who immediately knew Judd was a kindred spirit and fellow Steve Martin fan. He cold e-mailed Judd, and the rest is cinematic history.
Some of His Early Roles
“Clueless” may have been Paul’s breakout role in Hollywood, but it wasn’t his first. Like any emerging actor, he took some smaller roles in shows that didn’t really go anywhere. When he first moved to Los Angeles, he got cast in two different shows called “Sisters” and “Wild Oats.”
Although both jobs were short-lived, they ended up paying off. Film director Amy Heckerling saw Paul’s acting work in “Sisters” and marked him for the role of Josh in her upcoming film, “Clueless.” It just goes to show that any exposure is good exposure when it comes to Hollywood.
He Gave DiCaprio Career Advice
Guess what? Leonardo DiCaprio has Paul Rudd to thank for his extremely successful career. We’re exaggerating, of course. However, Paul and Leo did have a heart-to-heart about a tiny little acting gig in this little movie called “Titanic.” Ever heard of it?
Paul and Leo worked together on “Romeo + Juliet,” and on the last day of filming, the two actors went out for a drink. On the way to the bar, Leo told him that he had just been offered a leading role in “Titanic” and he didn’t know what to do. Naturally, Paul was ecstatic for his friend and told him to accept the role. That is pretty great advice, in our opinion.
An Off-Beat Role
Unless you’re a diehard Paul Rudd fan, you probably don’t know about his cameo appearance on the cult comedy show “Tim and Eric Awesome Show, Great Job!” The short sketch, dubbed “Celery Man,” features Paul Rudd as himself interacting with an AI to find the perfect version of himself dancing.
After perusing different versions of Paul Rudd in different outfits and styles, he eventually finds Tayne, who he’s totally into. A 90s music video by the German techno group Das Modul directly inspired the absurdist skit. We have no idea how Tim and Eric got Paul onto their show, but it will forever live on in infamy on the internet.
A Meta Moment
Every celebrity must have that “a-ha” moment when they realize that they have made it. For most people, we guess that this moment is probably when a stranger recognizes them on the street or asks for an autograph. For Paul Rudd, it was much more subtle and wholesome than that.
Paul realized he was a full-blown celebrity and household name while working on a "New York Times" crossword puzzle. One of the answers was his name, and his mind was completely blown. If that’s not the most “dad” way of realizing how famous you are, we don’t know what is.
His Kids Didn’t Know His Real Job
Paul Rudd likes to keep his kids out of the limelight. Because he never took his kids to movie premieres or allowed paparazzi to harass them, they didn’t fully understand what he did for a living. In fact, Paul claims that his son thought he worked at a movie theater until he was about 15 years old.
It all started when Paul took his toddler-aged son to the movies one day. There was a movie poster with Paul’s face on it in the theater, and his son innocently thought it meant that he worked at that specific theater. Paul thought it was cute and hilarious, so he never corrected that assumption.
Fatherhood Changed Him
There’s nothing more attractive than a man who is in touch with his feelings. You can fight with us about it, but we know we’re right. That’s why Paul Rudd admitting that he’s a sensitive guy gives us all the feels.
He shared that becoming a father to two kids has made him more empathetic and sensitive. Also, the death of his own father has made him more emotional. He’ll find himself tearing up while watching emotional shows or movies with his family. So, he’s funny, empathetic, and isn’t afraid of crying? This man can do no wrong.
A Top Secret Costume
New movies in the Marvel Cinematic Universe are a big deal. Not only are they huge money-makers, but each new release has a massive fanbase that eagerly awaits any sneak peeks, leaks, or breaking news. Therefore, when Paul Rudd was filming the first “Ant-Man” movie, he had to keep things under wraps– literally.
While filming on-location in Georgia, Paul had to wear a full-length cloak over his Ant-Man suit. Marvel executives didn’t want any potential leaks of the superhero’s costume, so Paul was required to cloak up between shoots on set. The grueling hours, the heavy suit, and the hot weather probably made for some tiring workdays.
His New Jersey Childhood
Although he spent most of his childhood in Missouri and Kansas, Paul was actually born on the East Coast. He was born in Passaic, New Jersey, and spent his early childhood there until he was around ten years old.
He has fond memories of New Jersey and New York, which may be why he moved back to New York state after a brief stint in Los Angeles. Paul jokes that his grandparents “lived in every ‘Sopranos’ location.” Growing up around such a blend of British and New Jersey accents, it’s surprising that Paul doesn’t seem to have a trace of either in his voice.
His High-Tech Ant-Man Costume
Marvel superhero costumes are no joke. Each outfit is professionally made to fit its designated actor to a tee. Paul’s Ant-Man costume is no different. The full-body suit took months to design and develop, according to costume designer Louise Frogley. Everything was sculpted, laser-cut, 3D-printed, and sewn in a giant Atlanta-based workroom.
Although the costume designers did their best to make Paul’s Ant-Man costume lightweight and breathable, it still got pretty hot while filming under the Georgia sun. To help keep him cool, his costume had a system of tubes that would pump cold water throughout the outfit.
Humor Runs in the Family
Paul Rudd had a very close relationship with his father, Michael, up until his passing. As it turns out, he probably got much of his sense of humor from his dad. After working as Vice President of Trans World Airlines, Michael Rudd became a memorable character in Lenexa, Kansas, where he settled down after retirement.
Michael developed a reputation for writing cantankerous letters to the local newspaper, often complaining about local issues. He would always sign his letters with “The Angry Lenexan,” and it quickly became his nickname. He had a great sense of humor and always signed off his personal letters to Paul with the nickname, too.
He Auditioned for “Titanic”
While filming “Romeo + Juliet” with Leonardo DiCaprio, Paul learned that Leo had gotten the part of Jack in the now-famous James Cameron film. Little did Leo know that Paul had actually tried out for the part, too.
Although Paul swears he was never seriously considered for the part, it appears that he did at least try out. His dad was a diehard "Titanic" fan and had a second career leading historical tours related to the ship’s history. When Paul heard about the casting call, he thought it would be cool to audition in honor of his dad’s historical passion.
Judd Apatow Was Not a “Mac and Me” Fan
Paul Rudd’s infamous “Mac and Me” tradition with Conan O’Brien was born from Paul’s discomfort with promoting himself. He famously hates talking about himself in interviews, so he started playing the random wheelchair scene from “Mac and Me” to downplay how awkward he felt about the whole thing.
It’s a gag that is still running all these years later, much to Conan’s dismay. There was, however, one singular time when Paul actually played a promo clip from one of his movies. While making “This Is 40” with Judd Apatow, the director required Paul to play an actual clip from the movie instead of the gag clip. He did, but that was the only time.