How Ryan Gosling Reciprocated Praise For His Star-Struck Barbie Co-Star Ncuti Gatwa

Ryan Gosling, one of Hollywood's favorite Ryans, starred as one of the top Kens in 2023's "Barbie." In fact, his Ken becomes the ringleader for all the other Kens in Barbieland, including one played by Rwandan-Scottish actor Ncuti Gatwa. Best known for Netflix's "Sex Education," Gatwa admitted he swooned a bit upon locking eyes with the dreamy Gosling. In an Elle UK interview, the "Doctor Who" star was open about the nerves he felt surrounding his role in Greta Gerwig's movie and about being starstruck by Gosling in particular. 

Gatwa told the outlet that he was very quiet "for the first month" of filming, revealing, "There was a time when I was talking to Greta and I turned around and Ryan Gosling was looking at me, and his eyes were so blue that I just [...] fell over. I just drowned in his eyes." The actor also talked about how enjoyable the "Barbie" experience was on and off set. The feeling might be somewhat mutual, due to Gosling's love of one of Gatwa's big projects. 

He notably kept his casting news as the titular Doctor in "Doctor Who" a secret from his "Barbie" castmates until it was announced to the world. During a chat with British Vogue, Gatwa recounted his co-star's huge reaction to it: "I remember Ryan Gosling bounding up to my trailer like, 'Doctor Who' is the coolest show in the world, man! I'm the biggest fan.'" Gatwa laughed and added, "And I was like, 'What the hell?' This show has incredible reach."

Gatwa's 'knees still get weak' around Gosling

Ncuti Gatwa acknowledged in his British Vogue interview that it was hard not telling people about being The Doctor before the news went public. However, Gatwa let the casting news slip to a few strangers when he was "a little tipsy in Soho House." Following the reveal that Gatwa was the new Doctor, Ryan Gosling publicly shared his love for both "Doctor Who" and his "Barbie" co-star. 

In an appearance on BBC's "The One Show," the interviewers mentioned how Gatwa had secured the protagonist role in "Doctor Who." Gosling gushed, "Ncuti, I am such a big fan of Ncuti's. He's the coolest. And him playing Doctor Who is the most exciting thing that's happening right now. So I'm here for it." Even after the Oscar nominee shared his excitement for Gatwa's new gig, he still couldn't get used to being around Gosling.

He said as much during the U.K. premiere of "Barbie." The "HeyUGuys" YouTube channel uploaded an interview with Gatwa from the event, in which Gatwa was asked if "it ever [gets] normal" being around Gosling. "No," Gatwa replied, shaking his head emphatically. "Absolutely not. My knees still get weak." He then laughed and added, "Absolutely!"

Gosling wore fan-made Doctor Who merch featuring Gatwa

The "La La Land" star wasn't overstating his "Doctor Who" love either, as evidenced by a fashion choice that had Whovians ("Doctor Who" superfans, for the uninitiated) buzzing. Ryan Gosling proudly wore Ncuti Gatwa's visage on an unofficial "Doctor Who" T-shirt, designed by fan Matthew Purchase, who sells it on Redbubble and donates the proceeds to charity. 

Gatwa shared a snapshot on his Instagram Story of Gosling in the shirt and captioned it, "Dolls supporting Doctors. Yass King. As if I couldn't love him anymore," (via Teen Vogue). Russell T. Davies, a former "Doctor Who" showrunner who returned to the program in 2022, also shared a few shots of Gosling in the tee on social media — but in one of his Instagram posts, Davies (jokingly) threatened legal action against Gosling for the "Illegal merch."

It's possible that Gosling and Gatwa could work together again too. According to a source who spoke to The Sun, Gosling reportedly has been cast in a guest appearance in "Doctor Who." Even if this turns out to be purely speculation, the actors are clearly big fans of each other, and everyone can agree that Gatwa and Gosling are always "Kenough."