Jason Merritt/Getty Images
If Ryan Gosling had been alive in the 1600s, it's likely he would have been suspected of witchcraft, because his ability to woo women across the world is downright spooky. But if you ask the blond, blue-eyed Canadian heartthrob himself, there's a very simple reason behind it.
In a recent interview with the U.K. Sun, Gosling explained his appeal to the opposite sex as more than just skin-deep. "If I have any particular appeal to women, maybe it's because I listen more than other guys do and appreciate how they think and feel about things," he said.
While some leading ladies such as Blake Lively, Rachel McAdams, and current squeeze Eva Mendes may be able to confirm Gosling's listening abilities from first-hand experience, that still doesn't explain his cult-like following that has spawned the "Hey Girl" meme and a whole slew of Gosling-themed novelties. No, that probably has more to do with his affinity for tight V-necks and, you know, saving people's lives.
But ever the humble Canuck at heart, Gosling says he doesn't understand the attention from fans, moviegoers, and bloggers the world over.
"I don't even think of myself as particularly good looking and not at all a typical kind of Hollywood leading man sort of actor," Gosling said. "I've been fortunate to play in a few romantic films, which impart a kind of romantic leading man aura to you. I don't think that's my destiny as an actor, and I'm not pursuing those kinds of parts."
And, true enough, although Gosling is famous for his breakout role in the romance "The Notebook" with former flame (and fellow Canadian) McAdams, he has also received high praise from critics for his performances in indie films such as "Lars and the Real Girl," "Blue Valentine," and "Half Nelson."
But now that Gosling's place is cemented in Hollywood history as one of the hottest men of the aughties, it's pretty clear he won't be disappearing from anyone's crush list, no matter what movie roles he takes. The myth of Gosling has already been constructed -- a process he's well aware of, but not too happy with.
"You create this great illusion onscreen, and then the illusion is taken to a different level when actors become mythologised," he said.
The 31-year-old is currently promoting his upcoming '40s-era flick "Gangster Squad" with Emma Stone and Sean Penn, but Gosling says he's looking forward to the day when people don't care about him as much.
"I don't mind the process of promoting my films because you want people to see the work and be able to get good projects financed," he said. "But lately I find I'm starting to get sick of the process and I should start trying to be as boring as I possibly can."
Don't hold your breath, Ryan!