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Paul Rudd: 8 stories that prove we don’t deserve the real Ant-Man

As Ant-Man and the Wasp: Quantumania hits Disney+, we celebrate Paul Rudd with the moments that show he really is a low-key superhero.

Paul Rudd

Paul Rudd is a low-key superhero. Image: Action Press/Shutterstock

Paul Rudd was already a huge star and one of the most beloved actors in Hollywood before he took on the role of Ant-Man. He had some of the greatest comedies of our era – Anchorman, Friends, Parks and Recreation – under his belt and had somehow managed to avoid the ageing process throughout his decades in front of the camera. But when Marvel comes calling, you enter a whole new league. As Ant-Man and the Wasp: Quantumania hits Disney+, we look back at some of Paul Rudd’s most wholesome moments, all of which mark him out as an everyday superhero.

The time his daughter dressed as The Wasp… but he had other ideas

Imagine your dad is the actual Ant-Man. You’d totally think The Wasp was a slam dunk for your Halloween outfit, wouldn’t you? I mean, you can have the real Ant-Man as your sidekick! Poor Darby, Paul Rudd’s daughter. Back in 2019, she donned her adorable mini Wasp outfit, and headed out for some trick or treating… only to be joined by her dad dressed as comedy music legend Weird Al Yankovic. It may not have been the Avengers meet-up you’d be expecting, but it sure made for some hilarious and very sweet photos. A father-daughter moment for the ages.

When he saved his friend’s sweet shop

When Rudd’s friend Ira Gutner died, it looked certain that his sweet shop – an integral part of the community in Rhinebeck, New York for more than 25 years – would close. Not on Rudd’s watch. He and fellow actor Jeffery Dean Morgan and their spouses, Hilarie Burton and Julie Rudd, decided to buy the shop and rescue it from closure. It’s not just an investment opportunity, Rudd and Morgan are very involved in the shop, with Rudd even helping out by manning the till sometimes.

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That time Paul Rudd did his bit for democracy

Clearly a fan of the power of a sweet treat, Rudd was spotted handing out blueberry-and-cream cookies to early voters in Brooklyn as they queued to do their civic duty in the 2020 US elections. “I want to say thank you for coming out and voting and doing your part,” Rudd told stunned members of the public.

He FaceTimed a little boy who was being bullied

12-year-old Brody Cooper was having a hard time in school. Only two teachers and two fellow students wrote in his school yearbook, and his distraught mum Cassandra took to Facebook to appeal to parents to teach their kids kindness. But then Paul Rudd stepped in to make sure Brody didn’t feel alone, calling him to chat about dinosaurs and fencing. Cassandra shared an adorable clip from the call, in which Rudd said Brody seemed like “my kind of guy”. “You truly made Brody so happy,” wrote Cassandra.

When Paul Rudd accidentally became a masseur

In Friends, Rudd famously played Mike Hannigan, the love interest of Phoebe, who made a living as a masseuse. We don’t know if he got any tips during filming, but we do know that Rudd once gave his pal Seth Rogan a massage. “Once I was in the spa in a hotel in Vegas getting a massage. When I finished I turned over and to my shock Paul Rudd was massaging me,” Rogan tweeted. “He saw me go in and convinced the masseuse to let him take over, thinking I’d notice immediately. I didn’t, and Paul did the entire rest of it.”

The time he harnessed the power of Britney Spears to keep a kid happy

When US TV host Stephen Colbert interviewed Rudd in 2014, he told a story about the first time they met. “I was on the set of some TV show,” said Colbert. “My daughter was there, at age six, and she was bored, and you sang Oops!… I Did It Again with her, over and over again, to keep her entertained. And my wife said – and I agree with her – that that might make you the nicest person on the planet.” Superhuman patience, and a caring heart? What can’t this man do?

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Looking at Paul Rudd is ‘like staring at the sun’

When they were filming The Shrink Next Door, Kathryn Hahn says she was surprised to find Rudd was still as youthful looking as when they first worked together on Anchorman almost two decades earlier. “He glows,” she told The Big Issue. “It’s like staring at the sun.” 

He charmed Aisling Bea with his very weird talent

Aisling Bea and Rudd appeared together in Living With Yourself (perhaps the greatest TV series for Paul Rudd fans, since it features TWO Paul Rudds) but Bea says when they first met, Rudd revealed a secret talent. He can split an apple in half with his bare hands. If that isn’t proof of wholesome superhuman powers, we don’t know what is.

Ant-Man and the Wasp: Quantumania – starring Paul Rudd! – is out now.

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