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15 things you didn't know about Paul Rudd

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paul rudd
Paul Rudd. Rodin Eckenroth/Getty Images

Paul Rudd's parents are British.

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Paul Rudd poses with his mother in 2010. Matthew Peyton/Getty Images

Paul Rudd was born on April 6, 1969, in Passaic, New Jersey. However, his mother was originally from Surbiton, England, and his father was from Edgware.

Rudd's father, Michael Rudd, worked as a tour guide and served as the vice president of Trans World Airlines, according to the Irish Post. His father died of cancer in 2008.

His mother, Gloria Irene Granville, was a sales manager at the television station KCMO-TV in Kansas City, Missouri, before becoming vice president of a speaker series, the Chat Series, in Kansas City, according to Fox 4.

As a result, he was brought up eating British roast dinners, and he's a big fan of tea.

McVitie's Digestive biscuits with a teapot and cups.
McVitie's Digestive biscuits. John Keeble/Getty Images

"Growing up with tea and crumpets and Sunday roasts and Yorkshire pudding and all of that, it's all my favorite stuff and it's all very comforting to me because it's — I've just always grown up with that," Rudd told First We Feast's Sean Evans on a 2019 episode of "Hot Ones."

He also shared that he loves British snacks, such as McVitie's Chocolate Digestives and Cadbury Fingers.

He's also a big tea drinker.

"Tea has always been a big thing in my life," he told The Guardian in 2015. "And I'm not talking about Liptons with lemon or iced tea, or any of that nonsense. Has to be hot PG Tips with milk. So growing up [in the States], it was a constant struggle …"

Rudd recently learned his parents are second cousins.

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Paul Rudd, his sister Mandi Rudd, and his mother in 1998. Ron Galella, Ltd./Ron Galella Collection/Getty Images

On a 2019 episode of "Finding Your Roots," which invites celebrities to learn more about their genealogy, Rudd was told by host Henry Louis Gates Jr. that his parents are actually related.

Despite not expecting to receive such groundbreaking news, Rudd had a sense of humor about the findings.

"Does this make my son also my uncle?" Rudd asked Gates Jr., according to NJ.com.

Paul Rudd's parents are also Jewish.

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Paul Rudd. Rodin Eckenroth/Getty Images

"I was always in new schools and had British parents, which was not the norm, and I think there was also … I'm not particularly religious, but I was born Jewish and I always felt like the outsider because I wasn't Christian or Catholic," he told The Guardian in 2015.

He said he learned early on that he would be accepted at school if he joked about himself.

Rudd was on Forbes' highest-paid actors list in 2019 after earning $41 million, but he wasn't always confident in himself.

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Paul Rudd attends the "Ant-Man And The Wasp" premiere in Tokyo on August 21, 2018. Koki Nagahama/Getty Images

"I think all kids are strange in their own way," he told Elle in 2018. "And I embraced eccentricity at an early age. I didn't feel cool."

Rudd explained that he "had really rough skin" and that he "dressed like the height of '80s fashion — but the bad version of it."

"When 'Pretty in Pink' came out, so many kids in high school saw it and said, 'You remind me so much of this guy Duckie.' I was so psyched about that," he said.

According to Forbes, Rudd was the ninth-highest earning actor of the year between 2018 and 2019.

He grew up loving comic books ... but not the ones you might expect.

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Paul Rudd attends the Los Angeles Global Premiere for Marvel Studios' "Ant-Man And The Wasp" in 2018. Jesse Grant/Getty Images

"I'm now getting asked about the comics I read as a kid [because of "Ant-Man"], but the comics I loved were the Beano and Dandy: Desperate Dan, the Bash Street Kids, [and] Dennis the Menace," he told The Guardian in 2015. "You say 'Dennis the Menace' in America and it's a totally different thing."

He attended a three-month program at the British American Drama Academy at Oxford University in 1993.

Oxford University
Oxford University. David Madison / Contributor/ Getty Images

While attending the British American Drama Academy for a three-month midsummer workshop, Rudd helped to produce shows, including the Globe Theater's production of Howard Brenton's "Bloody Poetry," according to Biography.

Rudd also starred in "Hamlet," directed by Academy Award-winning actor Ben Kingsley, while abroad.

"I loved it. I loved working on Shakespeare," Rudd told ShortList in 2018. "I loved living in the dorms at Oxford. I loved walking the campus. I loved getting tea. I loved memorizing the lines. I loved working on the plays. My hair was down to the middle of my back. I was enthusiastic and optimistic and taking everything in. It was joyous."

Rudd got his first big break by playing Josh in the 1995 hit movie "Clueless."

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Paul Rudd as Josh in "Clueless." CBS/Getty Images

The actor starred as Cher Horowitz's motivated former stepbrother Josh, and immediately captivated the audience's attention. It was also Rudd's first major movie role and would prove a catalyst in his career as an actor.

"Driving on and seeing those [Paramount] arches that I'd seen in movies growing up was ... brand new," he told Entertainment Tonight in 2019. "I very clearly have the memory of 'wow, I'm driving onto the Paramount lot.'"

However, he originally wanted to play Christian, Cher's first love interest who turns out to be gay.

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Paul Rudd (left) and Justin Walker (right) in "Clueless." CBS/Getty Images

While we can't imagine Rudd playing anyone other than Cher's "Baldwin" brother Josh, he almost auditioned for two other roles in the movie.

Rudd was initially intrigued by the character description, which described Christian as a "cool gay kid." The actor also expressed interest in auditioning for Murray, a role that ended up being played by Donald Faison.

Rudd said his role in "Wet Hot American Summer" helped him hone his comedy skills.

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Paul Rudd in "Wet Hot American Summer." Universal

"It was the most fun ever," he told Vulture in 2010. "We were all friends. We all stayed and lived on the camp. Up until that movie, I had never worked on any comedy that was really my own sense of humor. I mean, 'Clueless' is smart, but 'Wet Hot American Summer' was the first subversive thing I ever got to do."

Rudd and his wife, Julie Yaeger, have been married since 2003. He said she was "stupefied" by his recent Sexiest Man Alive win.

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Paul Rudd and his wife, Julie Yaeger, in 2020. VALERIE MACON/AFP/Getty Images

Rudd and his wife, publicist-turned-screenwriter Julie Yaeger, have managed to stay largely out of the spotlight during their nearly 20-year-long marriage.

"I don't think I'm going to sell a lot of tabloids," he told Elle in 2011. "My wife [Julie] and I have been together for 16 years. My parents were married my whole life until my father passed away a few years ago."

The pair share two children, Jack Sullivan Rudd and Darby Rudd.

Before Rudd was named 2021's Sexiest Man Alive by People magazine in November, he shared the news with Yaeger.

"She was stupefied," he said in an interview with People. "But you know she was very sweet about it. After some giggling and shock, she said 'Oh, they got it right.' And that was very sweet. She was probably not telling the truth, but what's she going to say?"

Rudd is a major Kansas City sports fan.

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Paul Rudd looks on before Super Bowl LIV between the Kansas City Chiefs and the San Francisco 49ers in 2020. Jamie Squire/Getty Images

Rudd moved to Overland Park, Kansas, a suburb outside of Kansas City, when he was just 10 years old. Ever since, Rudd has been a staunch supporter of Kansas City sports.

He even attended the University of Kansas and was in the arena to watch the Kansas City Chiefs defeat the San Francisco 49ers in the 2020 Super Bowl.

Along with other actors, he bought a beloved candy store in 2014 and saved it from closing.

Paul Rudd and Jeffrey Dean Morgan celebrate at a 2016 baseball game.
Actors Paul Rudd and Jeffrey Dean Morgan, who are co-owners of a sweet shop in New York. Kyle Rivas/Getty Images

He helped save Samuel's Sweet Shop in Rhinebeck, New York, after its owner passed away in 2014, the Poughkeepsie Journal reported. Rudd, who lives in the area, had been a regular customer, along with actor Jeffrey Dean Morgan, and when the future of the store was uncertain, they stepped in and offered to buy it.

Now they are owners with their wives (Morgan is married to fellow actor Hilarie Burton), and a third couple, Phoebe Jonas and Andy Ostroy. John Traver, who has worked at the store since he was 15, is also a partner.

"The best thing about being an owner of a candy shop is getting my favorite holiday candy in June," Rudd said, according to his bio on the shop's website.

He has a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame.

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Paul Rudd after being honored with a Star on The Hollywood Walk of Fame on July 1, 2015. Jesse Grant/Getty Images

After receiving his star in 2015, Rudd spoke about the milestone – in his own comedic way.

"I remember being a kid and walking this boulevard and reading the names and thinking about what so many other millions of people thought about, which is, 'Who's that?'" Rudd joked at the ceremony, according to a local news station. "The fact that millions of people are going to be able to now see me and ask that same question ... is humbling beyond belief."

Paul Rudd isn't on social media.

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Paul Rudd in 2003. J. Vespa/WireImage/Getty Images

"I don't need things in my life to distract me from my life," he told Elle in 2018. "As my world gets bigger, I try to keep it smaller ... I don't really want to talk to the people I know. Let alone people I don't."

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