'Growing Up With Gosling' new addition to the Ryan oeuvre
Ryan Gosling completists have so much material to keep them busy. There are the award-nominated performances, the bare-armed tabloid photos, the feminist Internet memes, the breathless news reports of street corner heroics.
But for diehards who still cannot get enough Goslingalia, there is yet another option -- provided by his fictional best friend, Luke Barnett, star and co-writer of the short film "Growing Up With Gosling."
"Basically, Ryan's tried to put me in everything he's ever done," Barnett says in the short, which inserts the unknown actor into key clips from the Gosling canon including "The Notebook," "Crazy, Stupid, Love" and "Lars and the Real Girl." "We did plays together in grade school and it was never like, 'Ryan Gosling the star and also his friend Luke.' I played Romeo. Ryan played Mercutio, which is a great part, but c'mon -- the play is called 'Romeo and Juliet.'"
"Growing Up With Gosling" -- which plays off the conceit that Barnett was dropped from all of Gosling's films at the last minute in favor of casting female stars like Rachel McAdams and Emma Stone -- originally appeared on FunnyOrDie in February, and is now beginning to play film festivals, including the L.A. Comedy Fest, which opens April 20.
Barnett, 29, did not actually grow up with Gosling in Toronto but in Washington, D.C. His most recent work includes the independent film "Sedona" and the role of "everybody else" in the L.A. stage production of "Saved By the Bell." Barnett's co-star in the film, Carly Craig, appears in the new "Three Stooges" movie, and his director, Zak Stoltz, primarily works in visual effects.
Barnett said he selected Gosling as his muse because the actor is so widely admired.
"Girls love him. Guys want to be him," Barnett said. "He's a person we do really think is great."
Gosling, who has been shooting the crime drama "Only God Forgives" in Thailand with his "Drive" director, Nicolas Winding Refn, is not affiliated with "Growing Up With Gosling." "Ryan is not in on this, that we know of," Barnett said.
But Barnett's status as Gosling's make-believe best friend is getting him noticed by the ladies, he said.
"And hey, when they can’t get me, they might get Ryan Gosling," Barnett said.
Photo: Ryan Gosling, left, and Luke Barnett in "Growing Up With Gosling." Credit: Courtesy of Luke Barnett