Meet Jack Quaid, Meg Ryan and Dennis Quaid's son, who will steal your heart this summer (2024)

HOLLYWOOD, Calif. – Squint, and that charming, curly-mopped guy on screen totally looks familiar.

Jack Quaid, the sonof Meg Ryan and Dennis Quaid, takes comparisons to his parents gamely. “People think I’m a solid half and half I think,” says the 27-year-old actor. “Some people see Mom, some people see Dad. It’s kind of like an optical illusion.”

This weekend he's adding a new romantic comedy to the family canon with“Plus One” (opens Friday in New York, Los Angeles, Chicago and other select cities; available as video on demand), playing Ben, a cynical bachelor who fights a romance with his free-spirited college best friend Alice (Maya Erskine, star of Hulu's coming-of-age series "PEN15") after the two singles agree to be each other's plus-ones during a summer of endlessweddings.

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Reunited!Billy Crystal, Meg Ryanand Rob Reiner deconstruct the 'When Harry Met Sally ...' org*sm scene

Meet Jack Quaid, Meg Ryan and Dennis Quaid's son, who will steal your heart this summer (1)

To prep for the role, Quaid caved and finally watched“When Harry Met Sally...”

“I’d actually never seen it before I did the movie, but I figured I needed to because it’s the rom-comand I was doing one. ... When your own mom has one of the most iconic org*sm scenes of all time, as a child, you tend to avoid that,” he deadpans. “But then I watched it and I cried forever because I was so proud of her, and I came into rehearsal (for "Plus One") still crying.”

Raised in Santa Monica, California, the actor knows he's fighting a preconception of Hollywood entitlement whenever he auditions. As a teen, hebecamedetermined to strike his own path, first studying acting at NYU before returning to Los Angeles to pursuehis own career.

“I did think about changing my name at one point, but then I was like, A: People are going to know anyway, there’s no getting around that. And B: I like my last name. I’ll keep it,” he says.

Meet Jack Quaid, Meg Ryan and Dennis Quaid's son, who will steal your heart this summer (2)

First came a part in “The Hunger Games” franchise, a role Quaidbooked during spring breakhis freshman year ofcollege– “which I never expected to be my first movie,” he says, calling the experience shooting in North Carolina akin to summer camp. “I always expected for me to be the best friend in a rom-com. Instead, I was a child murderer in a dystopian future. Yay!”

Votes of confidence continued with roles in Steven Soderbergh's "Logan Lucky"and Martin Scorsese’s short-lived HBO series“Vinyl.” "I always felt a little bit weird about leaving school (early), but Martin Scorsese would have been my graduating speaker," says Quaid. "Instead, I was working with him that summer."

In person, Quaid's vibe is friendly and decidedly relaxed. Despite the spotlight growing up,his childhood “felt really normal,"he says, thanks to his parents, whose 2001divorce was splattered across tabloid covers. "They did their best to kind of keep the crazier elements of that away from me.”

His co-star Erskine, 32, who also grew up in Quaid's neighborhoodand attended the same middle school (though years apart),says he isn't the usual LA kid with famous parents.

Among their classmates, “a fight in the alley was two guys saying, 'Your dad only grossed $3 million on his last movie!' 'Well, your dad only grossed $2 million!'That was a literal fight that happened at school," she says.

But Quaid is "the antithesis to that,” she adds. “He’s extremely humble and grateful for every opportunity. There was never any white male privilege.”

Meet Jack Quaid, Meg Ryan and Dennis Quaid's son, who will steal your heart this summer (3)

These days, Quaid is hitting his stride. "Plus One” won the audience award at Tribeca Film Festivalin May andearnedpraise from The Hollywood Reporter, which likened Quaid to "a lankier Joshua Jackson" while anointinghim "a quick-witted sparring partner for Erskine, as well as a touching and versatile leading man."

In July, Quaid stars in Amazon’s dark superhero series “The Boys,” executive produced by Seth Rogen and Evan Goldberg, playing an average Joe who challenges a capitalist society of supers.

Meet Jack Quaid, Meg Ryan and Dennis Quaid's son, who will steal your heart this summer (4)

"It’s a show about if our world had superheroes in it, we think that they’d probablyhave our best interests in mind–but most of them would probably be sociopathsbecause absolute power corrupts absolutely," he says.

And off-camera? He's keeping it casual. Quaid's summer is more about road trips with his girlfriend of three years, actressLizzy McGroder, than gift registries, best-man speeches and nuptials.

Unlike Ben and Alice's parade of weddings in "Plus One," “it just hasn’t started with me yet,” says Quaid. “All my friends, I’m seeing a lot of engagement photos on Instagram right now. It’s starting to hit me.”

Meet Jack Quaid, Meg Ryan and Dennis Quaid's son, who will steal your heart this summer (2024)
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