Everything We Know About the John Krasinski and Ryan Reynolds Film


Since appearing in the successful nine-season run of The Office, John Krasinski has worked hard to diversify his portfolio with strong lead roles in projects like Michael Bay‘s gritty war film 13 Hours and his titular role in Prime Video’s hit Jack Ryan series, but his most impressive feat has been his pivot into a directing career. Krasinki had previously directed the comedy-drama film The Hollars and adapted David Foster Wallace‘s Brief Interviews With Hideous Men for the big screen, but it was 2018’s breakout hit A Quiet Place that shot him straight into the upper echelon of directors working in Hollywood today. The unprecedented success of the sci-fi horror film, has already spawned a sequel, with multiple spin-offs in development, and led to a first-look deal for Krasinki with Paramount. IF, or Imaginary Friends as it was first titled, will see John Krasinski team up with Ryan Reynolds as they both star and produce the film, with Krasinski once again writing and directing.

The family fantasy comedy has conjured up an ensemble cast completely filled to the brim and along with its intriguing original concept, has turned into a sought-after package that ultimately landed at Paramount, who will no doubt be seeking to repeat their success with Krasinski after the Quiet Place films. Here is everything we know so far about IF.

Editor’s Note: This piece was updated on April 12, 2024.


Follows a young girl who goes through a difficult experience and then begins to see everyone’s imaginary friends who have been left behind as their real-life friends have grown up.

Release Date
May 17, 2024

Main Genre

Does ‘IF’ Have a Release Date?


IF is currently slated to open on Friday, May 17, 2024. The movie will be opening up against the Amy Winehouse biopic Back to Black, the horror reboot The Strangers: Chapter 1, and the indie R-rated comedy Babes.

IF was originally set to release on November 17, 2023, and was later delayed to May 24, 2024, before finally being bumped up a week to its current release date.

Where Can You Watch ‘IF’?

Ryan Reynolds opening a door in IF
Image via Paramount Pictures

With a stellar ensemble cast and big-name talent in front and behind the camera, IF is a rare high-profile original studio comedy in the current movie-going landscape that is set to have a wide theatrical release. Both A Quiet Place and A Quiet Place Part II were huge successes for Paramount, the latter being one of the first movies to bring people back to the theaters after the global pandemic. While the movie’s theatrical window is currently unknown, the film is eventually expected to be available to stream on Paramount+ at some point in 2024.

Is There a Trailer for ‘IF’?

The first look at IF was released online on December 14, 2023. The teaser trailer is quite a lengthy look at the film, coming with a shocking two minutes of footage.

The final trailer for IF was released by Paramount Pictures on April 11, 2024, a little over a month before the film’s release date.

What Is ‘IF’ About?

Cailey Fleming and Ryan Reynolds as Bea and Cal in IF.
Image via Paramount Pictures

The film follows Bea, a young girl played by Cailey Fleming, who goes through some traumatic experiences and develops a unique power that allows her to see other people’s imaginary friends who have been left behind after their real-world friends grew up and moved on. Ryan Reynolds Bea’s neighbor Cal, who shares the same ability as her, and mentors her. Reynolds has described the movie as a “live-action Pixar film” that he and John Krasinski have been working on for years, and here’s what the director had to say about the film at CinemaCon:

“Imaginary friends are not just these adorable creations, they are time capsules for our hopes, dreams, ambitions. I wanted people to leave this movie believing in something bigger and believing in something beautiful. It’s very real, and it’s very possible.”

The official synopsis for IF from Paramount Pictures reads:

From writer and director John Krasinski, IF is about a girl who discovers that she can see everyone’s imaginary friends — and what she does with that superpower — as she embarks on a magical adventure to reconnect forgotten IFs with their kids.

Who’s In the Cast of ‘IF’?

The casting directors of IF have pulled off an epic line-up featuring some of the most exciting names working today, which even John Krasinski has acknowledged,

“This cast is insane. I know for a fact that I will never get a better cast.”

Cailey Fleming (Star Wars: The Force Awakens) and Ryan Reynolds (Deadpool) will lead the live-action cast of IF as Bea and Cal, two humans with the ability to see imaginary friends. The rest of the movie’s live-action cast includes director John Krasinski as Bea’s Dad, Fiona Shaw (Andor) as Bea’s grandmother, Alan Kim (Minari) as Benjamin, and Bobby Moynihan (Saturday Night Live) as an adult who has abandoned his imaginary friend. Liza Colón-Zayas (The Bear) also stars in the movie in an undisclosed role.

Leading the movie’s voice cast is Academy Award nominee Steve Carrell as the big, purple-furred imaginary friend Blue, who previously starred alongside Krasinski on The Office. The film’s expansive voice-cast also includes Phoebe Waller-Bridge (Fleabag) as Blossom, the late Academy Award winner Louis Gossett Jr. (An Officer and a Gentleman) as Lewis, Academy Award winner Matt Damon (Air) as Sunny, Jon Stewart (The Daily Show) as Robot, Krasinski’s wife and Academy Award nominee Emily Blunt (Oppenheimer) as Unicorn, Maya Rudolph (Loot) as Ally, Academy Award winner Sam Rockwell (Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri) as Superhero Dog, Sebastian Maniscalco (About My Father) as Magician Mouse, Academy Award nominee Richard Jenkins (The Shape of Water) as Art Teacher, Christopher Meloni (Law & Order: Organized Crime) as Cosmo, Awkwafina (Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings) as Bubble, Reynolds’ wife Blake Lively (A Simple Favor) as Octocat, Academy Award winner George Clooney (Gravity) as Spaceman, Matthew Rhys (The Americans) as Ghost, Academy Award nominee Bradley Cooper (Maestro) as Ice, and Amy Schumer (Trainwreck) as Gummy Bear,

Who’s Making IF?

Ryan Reynolds and John Krasinski on the set of IF
Image via Paramount Pictures

John Krasinski will be directing the film from a script he wrote, and he will also be producing the film through his production company, Sunday Night Productions. Ryan Reynolds will also be producing the film through his company Maximum Effort and their overall deal with Paramount. Alison Seeger and Andrew Form also serve as producers on the film, along with George Dewey, Alexa ZinzGinsberg, and John J. Kelly as executive producers.

Where and When Did IF Film?

John Krasinki announced the commencement of principal photography through his Instagram on August 31, 2022, and revealed that cinematographer Janusz Kamiński, known for his extensive work with Steven Spielberg, is the director of photography for the film. Principal photography took place in New York and wrapped in early May before the dual WGA/SAG strike shut down all productions.


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