Credit: Suzanne Tenner

Image Credit: Suzanne TennerMark Ruffalo was surprised by his Best Supporting Actor nomination for The Kids are All Right — but not for the reason you might expect. “I had no idea they were announcing today,” Ruffalo tells EW. “I swear! I was totally taken by surprise. I just dropped the kids off at carpool. I was about five minutes from the school with a car full of kids. With so many kids, I didn’t even realize it was today. I’m glad I forgot about it. It’s made it all the more — I don’t know, just sweet and poignant and unexpected, you know?”

Ruffalo’s also pleased to see that the Academy loved Kids as much as he did when he first read the script. “[This film] struck a nerve in me — and that’s pretty much all I had to go by,” he says. “I don’t necessarily have the best track record for picking movies that will strike the nerve in a big popular way. I know the movies that I love and I think are important. I love this movie and I thought it was important — and it had real cultural significance, which I was really happy to be part of.”

Despite his love for the film, Ruffalo didn’t so many moviegoers would fall for the film as well, especially considering its subject matter. (The film picked up $20 million at the box office.) “This movie has been embraced pretty widely — It’s kind of why I got into doing what I do — this kind of storytelling, these kind of issues being spoken about in a way that’s not polarizing, but uniting,” he says. “It’s unbelievable, man. This little movie, it’s so much further that I could have imagined or hoped for.”

(Reporting by Sara Vilkomerson)

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