Ryan Gosling, 43, publicly shared his love for his girlfriend Eva Mendes, 49, during the Santa Barbara International Film Festival on Saturday. The actor accepted the Kirk Douglas Award for Excellence in Film during the ceremony and called the actress the “girl of” his “dreams,” in a video of the memorable moment. As the 16th recipient of the honor, he also lovingly mentioned their two daughters, Esmeralda Amada and Amada Lee, as he reflected on what the acting life has brought him.
“Most importantly, I got to meet the girl of my dreams, Eva Mendes, and have two dream children,” he said during the speech. “I dreamed of one day making movies, and now, movies have made my life a dream.”
📼 I Kirk Douglas Award _ Ryan Gosling Acceptance Speech ✨ pic.twitter.com/3awwJ1jJth
Ryan also joked about Barbie director Greta Gerwig giving him the role of the doll Ken in the popular film. “I, for one, have been so lucky. I’ve gotten to go to the moon, be a motorcycle bank robber, a getaway driver, waltz through the stars, be an elementary school teacher — albeit a crack-addicted one — become a replicant from the future, a gangster from the past, a lovelorn stunt man, and most recently, thanks to Greta, a 70-year-old crotchless doll,” he said before laughter erupted from the audience.
The thankful star went on to give shout outs to some of his biggest inspirations in the industry, including Cecil B. DeMille, Garry Marshall, and Stanley Kubrick, as well as actors Charlton Heston, Yul Brenner, Goldie Hawn, Kurt Russell and Kirk Douglas. He concluded by thanking those who have supported him throughout his acting career.
Ryan’s honor comes after he and Eva started a private life together way back in 2011. The two were friends before turning their bond into a romantic one and went on to welcome their first child, Esmeralda, in September 2014, and their second, Amada, in May 2016. In May 2023, Ryan also talked about Eva and how she changed the course of his life in an unexpected yet positive way, in an interview for GQ.
“I was looking for her, you know?” he said, adding he wasn’t fully aware at the time. “But it all makes sense now.”
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