He was Phoebe’s lobster, but not Juliet’s. He is Paul Rudd and if you grew up in the ‘90s you most certainly fell in love with him at one point or another. If not, well, he joined the Marvel Cinematic Universe in 2015, introducing him to a legion of new fans.
As the star of your Sunday night movie, Ant-Man and the Wasp, we thought we’d take a scroll down his filmography and highlight his top five roles.
In this contemporary update of Jane Austen’s Emma, Rudd plays flannel-shirted Josh to Alicia Silverstone’s Alaïa-wearing Cher. In what was only his second feature film, Rudd perfectly pulled off the role of the sweet, charming, tree-planting, Shakespeare-reading former stepbrother.
Romeo and Juliet (1996)
In another contemporary update – this time a gun-toting version of Shakespeare’s Romeo and Juliet – Rudd plays wealthy, Time-cover posing Paris whom the Capulets are desperate to marry their daughter to. There’s just one problem: their daughter, Juliet, is far more captivated by the balcony-climbing Romeo Montague. Rudd brings just the right amount of ingratiating sweetness to the character – making you roll your eyes while still feeling kinda sorry for him too. Hey! At least he gets out the story alive.
Friends (2002 – 2004)
There’s no denying Rudd does sweet and charming well. But despite often being steered towards these kinds of characters, Rudd does an excellent job of distinguishing each and every one. He brought his charm to the tail-end of Friends as Mike, who meets and eventually marries Phoebe over the course of the last two seasons.
Anchorman: The Legend of Ron Burgundy (2004 – 2013)
There was the Rat Pack, the Brat Pack, the Brit Pack, and the Frat Pack. Rudd joined the latter in their heyday in the early noughties, as Brian Fantana in Anchorman. Dropping the charm that made his other characters so endearing, Rudd showed another side of his comedic coin as the smarmy, panther-cologne wearing Fantana.
Ant-Man (2015 – whenever the MCU ends)
A couple years later Rudd joined another group altogether when he entered the MCU as Scott Lang AKA Ant-Man. His first outing was followed by an appearance in Captain America: Civil War, as well as an Ant-Man sequel – and we’ll see him back in the role this year in Avengers: Endgame.
Feature image: Paul Rudd in Ant-Man and the Wasp (2018).