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Imitation is the sincerest form of flattery.
Although Ryan Reynolds‘ brief cameo in Hobbs & Shaw was a complete surprise to audiences at first, now that the Fast & Furious spinoff film has been out for over a week, the cat’s out of the bag.
In the film, Reynolds plays Locke, a CIA agent who used to work with Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson’s character, Hobbs. Proving just how much of an impression their time together had on him, during the film, Locke shows Hobbs that he got a tattoo on his chest that matches one of Hobbs’ own.
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However, fans of both actors know that in real life, while Johnson’s chest tattoo is very real, Reynolds’ is not.
Poking fun at the matching body art, Reynolds, 42, posted a side-by-side shot of the two actors pulling back their shirts to expose the designs.
“I can only imagine how upset I was to discover this,” he wrote.
In response, Johnson, 47, assured Reynolds that he looked “cool and sexy.”
“You pull your shirt back to reveal our ink and it looks cool & sexy. I pull my shirt back and it looks like an indicator that I eat women and children,” he quipped.
Commenting on their close bond, Reynolds went on to share a photo of half of a “best friend” necklace on his Instagram story, tagging Johnson.
Sharing a slightly different version of the photo on his own account, Johnson thanked Reynolds for agreeing to make a small appearance in the film.
“A #HobbsAndShaw delight when audiences go ape s— with laughs & joy when @vancityreynolds comes on screen as Hobbs’ surprise partner ‘Agent Locke’ of the CIA – who’s known for stabbing bad guys in the chest with a brick,” Johnson wrote.
“I’ve known this brilliant SOB for years and we jumped at the opportunity to mash up our tequila and gin chemistry to deliver some magic for the audience,” he continued. “Thanks RR for helping make our lil’ spin-off movie, the #1 movie in the world. Fans love it, so we’ve done our job, brother.”
In a recent interview, director David Leitch revealed that Reynolds’ role changed significantly once the actor came on board.
“I reached out to Ryan: ‘Dude, I have this exposition scene with the CIA agent. He’s sending Hobbs and Shaw on the journey. It’s a lot of boring exposition. How would you like to come in and play it?’ And he’s like, ‘I would love to! It’d be so fun,’ ” Leitch, who also directed Reynolds in Deadpool 2, told Vulture.
From there, Leitch shared that Reynolds “really re-crafted” his character.
“I sent him the pages. Doing what Ryan does best, he really re-crafted them into something special that had a ton of jokes and pop culture references and this weird dynamic of this character who’s kind of quasi-obsessed with Hobbs — that’s all from Ryan’s mind,” Leitch explained. “So without approaching Ryan, we never would have had this gold. He created a character that I was hoping would live in this world that’s a little bit more fun-forward than the other Fast franchise.”