Take it from David Harbour: when you’re in your flop era, theres only one person you should call in to help—that person being Van Wilder/The Green Lantern/the Master of Flops himself, Ryan Reynolds.
Harbour recently told GQ Magazine that after his 2019 starring role in Hellboy found itself woefully flopping in theaters (we’re talking $21 million domestic gross on a $50 million budget), he reached out to Reynolds for advice.
“I know [Reynolds] a little bit,” Harbour says. “I called him and I was like, ‘Hey man, I just need to know something. You know Green Lantern? Huge flop for you. What the fuck is that like, because I think I’m going to hit that right now. Am I gonna be okay? Am I gonna survive this?”
If Reynolds knows anything, it’s that survival from the sootiest of ashes is certainly possible. Although Harbour says Reynolds was “sweet” in his response, he also admits no words could completely erase the sting of failure.
“It was a very difficult experience because I wanted a lot out of it,” Harbour explains. “I really like [Mike Mignola, Hellboy creator], I like that character. And then immediately when it began, even when it was announced, I realized that people did not want that character reinvented. I was very naive and optimistic about what we were going to do.”
Harbour has shared the same sentiment before—during a May 2020 Instagram Live stream, he said he thought the deep fan love for Guillermo Del Toro’s 2004 Hellboy film, which starred Ron Perlman and Selma Blair, made any remake effectively D.O.A.
“Guillermo del Toro and Ron Perlman created this iconic thing that we thought could be reinvented and then [fans] certainly—the loudness of the internet was like, ‘We do not want you to touch this,’” Harbour shared at the time, per Screen Rant. “And then we made a movie that I think is fun and I think had its problems but was a fun movie and then people were just very very against it and that’s people’s right but I learned my lesson in a lot of different ways.”