Add Paul Rudd to Brody Ridder’s growing list of friends.
The actor, 53, reached out to the 12-year-old after reading a TODAY Parents story about how no one wanted to sign Brody's yearbook.
Now, Rudd and Brody are exchanging regular text messages about where to get the best slice in New York City — both love Joe’s Pizza on Carmine Street. They also share a love of World War II history and dinosaurs.
Brody’s mom, Cassandra Ridder, confessed that her son, a rising seventh-grader, didn’t recognize Rudd the first time they FaceTimed last month.
“He was just sort of staring at the screen — a little confused,” Cassandra told TODAY Parents. “Then Paul was like, ‘You probably know me as Ant-Man. And Brody goes, ‘Oh my gosh! This is so cool.’
Cassandra added that Rudd’s wife, Julie Yaeger, also got on the call.
“Paul said, ‘Hold on — I have someone who wants to meet you,’" Cassandra recalled. “And then [Julie] introduced herself and told Brody he’s a total rockstar.”
Days later, Brody opened his mailbox and discovered a handwritten letter from Rudd.
“It was great talking to you the other day. It’s important to remember that even when life is tough that things get better,” Rudd wrote. “There are so many people that love you. And think you’re the coolest kid there is. Me being one of them!”
“I can’t wait to see all the amazing things you’re going to accomplish,” he added.
The care package also included an autographed Ant-Man helmet that says, “For my good friend Brody when he takes over the world.”
In May, Cassandra posted on Facebook after Brody’s classmates in Westminster, Colorado, refused to sign his yearbook.
“My poor son. Doesn’t seem like things are getting any better. 2 teachers and a total of 2 students wrote in his yearbook. Despite Brody asking all kinds of kids to sign it,” Ridder wrote. “So Brody took it upon himself to write to himself. My heart is shattered. Teach your kids kindness.”
“I honestly didn’t think much would come of it,” Ridder previosuly told TODAY.
The next day, Ridder received a text from Brody.
“Facebook this,” he wrote, alongside a picture of yearbook filled with messages and signatures.
Cassandra said Brody is already counting down the days until he returns to school.
“He used to dread the end of summer vacation. He’d try to fake sick on the first day," she revealed. "But Brody is like a new person because of this outpouring of love and support. It’s been overwhelming — in the best way."
Late night host Stephen Colbert once described Rudd as “the nicest guy on the planet.”
“Abbott Elementary” star Quinta Brunson credits Rudd for inspiring her to work in comedy.
“He was like, ‘If you want to do comedy and you love it and you can do it, then you should do it. There’s nothing that should stop you or get in your way, you should absolutely pursue it,'" Brunson revealed during a recent Hollywood Reporter roundtable. "It changed my life."