Ryan Gosling went on The Ellen DeGeneres Show to promote his new movie, First Man, on Friday, but the best moment of his appearance actually happened backstage. In a moment that made all of our nostalgia-fueled hearts flutter, Gosling apparently ran into an old friend and Mickey Mouse Club costar: Britney Spears.
During his chat with DeGeneres, Gosling admitted that neither he nor Spears could remember when they last saw each other, which he took as “a sign that it’s been quite a while.” The All-New Mickey Mouse Club aired from 1989 to 1994, and it would seem these two didn’t keep in touch much after the series ended. That makes sense, though, given that they both went on to have megastar careers in different spheres of Hollywood.
Gosling admitted that when he first started working with Spears and fellow Mickey Mouse Club member Christina Aguilera, he was intimidated by their performances.
“When we first got to the show, they sort of had all the kids perform for one another… and I remember it was Christina Aguilera and then Britney performed and I remember thinking, ‘OK, so they’re, like, freakishly talented,’” Gosling said. “I was used to working with talented people, but that was another level.”
When it was Gosling’s turn to perform, he said, he stood in front of his castmates and “I think I was just like, ‘I’m Canadian.’” Be still, our hearts.
According to Entertainment Tonight, Gosling, Spears and DeGeneres posed for a photo together backstage, which DeGeneres shared on Instagram to tease the stars’ (separate) appearances on Friday’s show.
Although it’s been a while since Gosling and Spears last saw each other, this isn’t the first time we’ve heard about their memories of each other. In 2013, Gosling told Sunday Times magazine, “Britney was a sweetheart. She lived right above me, the girl next door. The little girl I used to play basketball and spin the bottle with.”
Spears told DeGeneres about that spin the bottle game during an appearance on her show a few months later. According to E! News, Spears said, “I didn’t kiss [Gosling], though. The only person I kissed was Justin [Timberlake]!”
If the bottle had landed on Gosling, would we have missed out on all the vicarious joy brought to us by Spears and Timberlake dating during the height of their respective pop music careers in the ’90s? That’s an interesting line of thought.
It may be that most members of The All-New Mickey Mouse Club aren’t as close as they once were, but we’re still reveling in this sweet cast reunion. Now if only we could see the whole squad together again for a repeat performance.