No, there are no Ken-tentious feelings between Barbie co-stars Ryan Gosling and Simu Liu.
Liu cleared the air Thursday about a possible Barbie beef after a video surfaced with seemingly awkward red carpet interaction between the two actors.
Here’s everything you need to know about a rumored battle of the Kens that turned out to be much ado about nothing.
In a video posted to social media Wednesday, Gosling and Liu are seen posing for photos at a June press event in Toronto, Canada. Liu had his hand around Gosling’s waist when Gosling looked down and muttered something inaudible. Then the actors pulled apart.
“You don’t what – oh, it’s too tender?” Liu says. “Fair enough.”
The actors then continued posing, arms to themselves.
Several social media users instantly assumed the worse. “Oh I’d literally never show my face again,” one wrote. “He was so mad after like you can see it in his face,” another interpreted of Liu. “Is it me or has Ryan gosling come off very arrogant for this entire press tour?” one asked.
Others pointed out the actors were probably just playing off their rivalry in the movie. “I think it’s their characters playing like they hate each other cause they are in competition with each other in the movie,” a person wrote. “It ain’t that deep.”
The brouhaha over Gosling’s alleged snub got so loud that Liu addressed it Thursday in an Instagram story with a photo of the pair smiling on the carpet.
“I’d beach off with this Kenadian again in a heartbeat,” the Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings actor wrote of his fellow Ontario, Canada native (Gosling is from London, while the Chinese-born Liu was raised in Mississauga). “He is the best human in every way, especially when he jokes around with us on the carpet and on set, infecting all of us with his kenergy.”
He added, “Now let’s get back to the issues that matter, like supporting our striking actors and writers fighting for fair wages!”
Liu’s comments align with everything complimentary he’s said about Gosling on the press tour.
“Ryan was the best inspiration, because he was the most disciplined,” he told Men’s Health about working out with his co-star. “I could not beat Ryan to the gym. He was always there earlier than me and he always stayed later. It just speaks to the discipline that this guy has, and I think it really pays off in the movie. He’s got a couple scenes where you get to see a bit of that Ken body, and it’s pretty shredded.”
Liu gushed about his overall Barbie experience in an interview with Yahoo Entertainment.
“Just stepping onto that set was absolute magic,” he said. “It was as fun to make as it is to watch, maybe more so. ‘Cause we really truly got to live it, you know? I’m so sad that moviegoing audiences will only experience it for like an hour and 45 minutes at a time. But truly, we were like, ‘Is it legal to have this much fun at work?’ Honestly, it was the best film [experience].”
What you need to know
Gosling is famously deadpan, especially doing press events.
He’s been especially goofy and droll through Barbie’s long promotional campaign — seemingly having more fun than he’s ever had on a press tour as he’s cracked wise alongside co-star Margot Robbie and eagerly introduced the notion of “Ken-ergy” into the pop culture zeitgeist.
“Up until this point, I only knew Ken from afar. I didn’t know Ken from within,” Gosling said during the Warner Bros. panel at CinemaCon in Las Vegas. “I doubted my Ken-ergy. I didn’t see it. … I was living my life and the next thing I knew, I was bleaching my hair and shaving my legs and rollerblading on Venice Beach.”
As for what Ken-ergy is? Gosling offers no easy answers.
However, there is an easy answer for what transpired between he and Liu at the press event. That was merely Gosling being Gosling… or Ken being Ken.