Girls’ hearts broke across the globe after heartthrob Ryan Gosling decided to take a break from acting following the release of his upcoming film, The Place Beyond the Pines. He told AP that he’s been “doing too much lately” and has “lost perspective on what [he’s] been doing … I need a break from myself as much as I imagine the audience does.” (Except your audience does not need a break from you).
On a serious note, I think his audience should take a step back and admire him even further considering he has the ability to be self-critical despite his good looks and ample success in the field. Reasons for his temporary retirement? Perhaps he’s tired of the Hollywood limelight and wants to spend more time with his puppy. Or maybe he wants to wife up current girlfriend, Eva Mendes. Either way, what will this break mean for the rest of his acting career, when and if he returns?
Let’s answer this question by looking at the recent comeback of a man by the name of Justin Timberlake. His looks certainly got better, channeling either the clean buzz cut or his swagger slicked back part rather than his curly fro from his 'N Sync days, and he’s been enjoying the companionship of recent wife, Jessica Biel. Furthermore, he’s been an SNL host, released an insanely successful album, 20/20, and showed popular culture he's more of a hit than ever before. His short absence from the limelight allowed him to come back swinging; he was admired greatly as an 'N Sync band member, so it is only natural he finds success again after years of awaiting. Let's call this the potential "Timberlake Path."
You might also answer the question by looking at failed celebrity comebacks: Lindsay Lohan and Britney Spears come to mind. Let's call this the "Lohan/Spears Path." First the cute freckly ginger in the Parent Trap, Lohan is now more famous for her destructive lifestyle than her actual acting. She was put on the blacklist after court battles and drug busts, and finally (thank God) stepped out of the limelight for several months. Her first attempt back in the spotlight was through an SNL host; she was lazy, evidently reading from the cue card, looked like a hot mess (minus the hot), and subsequently failed miserably. Similarly, after Britney’s bashful era of shaved heads and umbrella weapons, she took a break and went for her comeback via the 2007 MTV Music Award stage. Seemingly on drugs, the performance was sub par and sloppy. Where has she been since? Therein lies the point. Better luck next time, girls.
Coming back to the original question of what is in the books for Gosling, I’d say it’s pretty safe to assume he’ll take the Timberlake Path. His charming performance in Crazy, Stupid, Love as well as his well-mannered thespian skills will surely have the masses demanding him back soon enough. After all, the bulk of his fans are girls with the following mindset: once a hottie, always a hottie (at least in the 10 or so years following a given break). This time away from Hollywood might be good for him. It will allow for some privacy, and without his face pasted on every billboard and bus ad out there, he'll have time to reflect on his accomplishments, think about his future, and have more gym time to keep those “photo-shopped abs,” as co-star Emma Stone calls them, intact.