It’s difficult to hear the name Ryan Reynolds without thinking of Deadpool, the sweary and sarcastic alternative superhero he’s best known for playing. But in his latest summer blockbuster Free Guy, the Canadian actor portrays an altogether different kind of hero. Reynolds stars as a kind and wholesome – but ultimately quite ordinary – bank clerk named Guy. Compared with the 44-year-old’s previous film roles, it’s quite a gear change. “Well, my default is just pure trash, on the inside,” he laughs. “So this is slightly new for me. There’s something really wonderful about playing a character who’s kind of naïve and innocent.” The movie’s titular character lives in Free City, a fictional universe within a video game. (The premise is a little out there, but we’ll come to that in a second.) After a chance encounter with a young woman named Millie, played by British actress Jodie Comer, he begins to question the confines of the virtual world around him. “I think there’s something really fun about exploring everything with new eyes, which is what this character gets to do, and filtering that through the prism of comedy and occasionally cynicism,” Reynolds says. “I love playing a character who’s stepping out from the background into this new person.” As the film progresses, Guy starts to notice peculiarities in his surroundings. He ultimately discovers he is a bland background character in a hugely popular video game. Guy exists only in this virtual landscape, rubbing shoulders with other characters who, unlike him, are operated by humans in the real world. Thanks to some extremely advanced artificial intelligence code we won’t attempt to explain here, Guy is the only NPC (non-playable character) in Free City who is able to think and feel things for himself. As a result, he starts to become bored with his everyday life. And you can’t blame him. Every morning he wakes up, says hello to his goldfish, picks up a coffee, has a polite chat to the barista and heads into work. His bank is robbed at gunpoint several times a day as other characters attempt to gain points in Free City. (Amusingly, the bank’s employees are increasingly bored with these routine robberies.