Ryan Gosling Said He'd Never Met Anyone Who Could Top Rachel McAdams

#TBT: Check in every Thursday as we throw it back to some of our favorite celebrity couples of all time.

Who: 2005 "Best Kiss" MTV Movie Award winners and Oscar nominees Ryan Gosling, 37, and Rachel McAdams, 39.

13th Annual Screen Actors Guild Awards - Arrivals
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How They Met: The Canadian actors met in 2003 on the set of the greatest Nicholas Sparks adaptation of all time: The Notebook. But unlike their characters (Ally and Noah, respectively), it wasn’t quite love at first sight for Rachel and Ryan.

During an interview with VH1 in 2014, Notebook director Nick Cassavetes revealed that the film’s stars butted heads pretty aggressively when they first began shooting. It was so aggressive, in fact, that at one point Gosling asked him to kick McAdams off set. “They were really not getting along one day on set. Really not,” Cassavetes shared, “And Ryan came to me, and there’s 150 people standing in this big scene, and he says, ‘Nick come here.’ And he’s doing a scene with Rachel and he says, ‘Would you take her out of here and bring in another actress to read off camera with me?’ I said, ‘What?’ He says, ‘I can’t. I can’t do it with her. I’m just not getting anything from this.’”

When They Peaked: Right up until the bitter end, every moment of McGosling togetherness was at its peak. There are too many beautiful memories to recall. Perhaps their relationship was at its height when they hung out with Al Gore:

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Or maybe when they made out at the MTV Movie Awards:

2005 MTV Movie Awards - Show
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Or maybe our first instinct was correct and every moment was simply the greatest of all time.

Why We Loved Them: Because if [she’s] a bird, [he’s] a bird.

The Breakup: After several (seemingly) blissful years together, McGosling called it quits in 2007. Speculation began in April while Ryan was doing press for Fracture. Ahead of a screening, Gosling was asked if he was still dating McAdams, and he gave the most bizarre answer (of all time, maybe?): “No idea. No comment.”

By October, Gosling had confirmed his and McAdams’s split, telling GQ, “we both went down swingin’ and we called it a draw.” Gosling also said The Notebook “introduced me to one of the great loves of my life,” adding, “People do Rachel and me a disservice by assuming we were anything like the people in that movie. Rachel and my love story is a hell of a lot more romantic than that.” *Swoon.*

2005 MTV Movie Awards - Press Room
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In 2011, Gosling (who had recently been spotted kissing actress Eva Mendes) spoke about his ex once more, revealing that he hadn’t “met anyone who could top” McAdams or ex Sandra Bullock, calling them “two of the greatest girlfriends of all time.” He continued, telling UK newspaper The Times that “show business is the bad guy” when it comes to relationships. “When both people are in show business it’s too much show business. It takes all of the light, so nothing else can grow.” Well, we hate to break it, Ry, but Eva’s also in this business we call show — or, well, she was … The mother of Gosling’s two daughters hasn’t been linked to any projects since 2014 (the same year she gave birth to their first child, Esmeralda).

Like Ryan, Rachel also appears to hold her ex in high esteem. During an interview in 2016, McAdams said she'd love to work with Gosling again. (Make it happen, Hollywood.)

2005 Teen Choice Awards - Press Room
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Where They Are Now: It’s been 11 years, but part of us still refuses to believe that it’s over.

Despite it all, Ryan and Rachel seem to have done well for themselves in the decade and change since they split. Rachel quietly welcomed her first child, a baby boy, with screenwriter boyfriend Jamie Linden earlier this year. Professionally, McAdams is at her height — she earned her first Oscar nomination for her 2015 performance in Spotlight, and followed up the acclaim with a buzzy performance in Disobedience opposite Rachel Weisz.

Gosling’s been in a (incredibly secretive) relationship with Eva Mendes since 2011. They welcomed daughter Esmerelda, 4, in 2014, and daughter Amada, 2, in 2016. In 2017, Gosling earned his second Oscar nomination and first Golden Globe win for his performance in the acclaimed Damien Chazelle film La La Land, in which he starred opposite Emma Stone. His latest film, First Man, which chronicles the life of history-making astronaut Neil Armstrong, opens this weekend.

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