The New Hollywood North: Alex Mallari Jr.

Alex Mallari Jr.

The Scarborough actor has already worked with Simu Liu and Ryan Reynolds. Up next, a big-budget rom-com with Jennifer Lopez

By Patricia Karounos| Photography by Vanessa Heins
| August 17, 2022

Age: 34 Known for: Roles in Netflix’s sci-fi hit The Adam Project and dramedy Ginny & Georgia
Up next: Acting alongside J.Lo in the rom-com Shotgun Wedding

Acting wasn’t Alex Mallari Jr.’s first career choice, nor was it his second. Growing up in Scarborough, the Filipino Canadian actor dreamed of a career in the NBA. When an injury took him out of the game, he decided to study criminology at the University of Toronto in hopes of becoming a lawyer. It took him a semester to realize that wasn’t quite right either. Then he heard a radio ad selling acting classes and headshot packages. If he couldn’t settle on one profession, he thought, acting would let him become anything he wanted. “This is the way I get to try it all,” he says.

His first gig was a commercial for the MMVAs that he’s not sure ever aired. He parlayed that experience into progressively bigger roles: a stoic warrior on the sci-fi series Dark Matter, a co-worker and love interest on CBC’s Workin’ Moms, and a PI on the Netflix hit Ginny & Georgia. In 2022, Mallari showed his range in Nathalie Younglai and Simu Liu’s charming CBC Gem rom-com series, Hello (Again), in which he plays a swoon-­worthy chef stuck in a time loop trying to save his relationship. And then there was Netflix’s blockbuster The Adam Project, in which he played the badass foil to Ryan Reynolds and Zoe Saldaña.

The New Hollywood North: Alex Mallari Jr.

Still to come is the second season of Ginny & Georgia and two films: Netflix’s Code 8: Part II, a cult sci-fi sequel starring and produced by fellow Canadians Stephen and Robbie Amell, as well as another villainous turn in the big-budget rom-com Shotgun Wedding, starring Jennifer Lopez. He’s still pinching himself. “I can’t help but think, Do I actually have what it takes? Or did I just trick them into thinking that I do?

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