Julian Dennison

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Julian Dennison
Julian Dennison.jpg
Born (2002-10-26) 26 October 2002 (age 15)[1]
Lower Hutt, New Zealand
Nationality Māori New Zealander
Occupation Actor
Years active 2013–present
Notable work

Julian Dennison (born 26 October 2002) is a New Zealand actor. He debuted in the 2013 film Shopping, for which he won the New Zealand Film Award for Best Supporting Actor.[2][3] He is best known for his roles as Ricky Baker in Hunt for the Wilderpeople (2016), the highest-grossing New Zealand film in history, and as Russell Collins a.k.a "Firefist" in Deadpool 2 (2018).

Life and career[edit]

Dennison was born and raised in Lower Hutt, New Zealand. He is the second youngest child of a family of four children, with the youngest being his twin brother Christian. Julian is of Māori descent and is a member of the iwi (tribe) Ngāti Hāua and the waka (canoe) Tainui. He attended Naenae Primary School, where he scored his first acting role during open auditions for the film Shopping (2013).[4] Julian was then cast in an Australian film called Paper Planes (2015).

Julian continued with acting and was given a role in an advertisement for the New Zealand Transport Agency to prevent driving under the influence of drugs, this advert became an internet sensation in New Zealand and Australia[5] and was directed by Taika Waititi, who later on asked Julian to take the role of Ricky Baker in the New Zealand film Hunt for the Wilderpeople (2016) without the need to audition,[6] the film went on to become New Zealand's highest grossing film ever and not only became a hit in New Zealand, but around the globe.

Dennison then played Russell Collins / Firefist in the 2018 film Deadpool 2. He was cast because of his Wilderpeople performance, and the friendship of Waititi with Deadpool's filmmakers.[7][8] In June 2018, Dennison was the first to be cast for Godzilla vs. Kong in a supporting role.[9]

He lives in Wellington, New Zealand.


Year Title Role Notes
2013 Shopping Solomon Winner, New Zealand Film Award for Best Supporting Actor
2015 Paper Planes Kevin
2016 Hunt for the Wilderpeople Ricky Baker Winner, New Zealand Film Awards 2017 for Best Actor
Chronesthesia[10] Beni
2018 Deadpool 2 Russell Collins / Firefist
2020 Godzilla vs. Kong TBA
Year Title Role Notes
2016 Funny Girls Himself Series 2


  1. ^ Entertainment Tonight (24 May 2018). "'Deadpool 2': Zazie Beetz and Julian Dennison (Full Interview)" – via YouTube. 
  2. ^ Barlow, Helen (28 January 2016). "Julian Dennison talks working with Taika Waititi". The New Zealand Herald. Retrieved 6 April 2016. 
  3. ^ "NZ Film Awards: Shopping picks up seven Moas". The New Zealand Herald. 10 December 2013. Retrieved 6 April 2016. 
  4. ^ "Meet Julian Dennison, young star of 'Hunt for the Wilderpeople'". Metro US. 2016-06-27. Retrieved 2018-05-18. 
  5. ^ "Blazed - Drug Driving in Aotearoa | Commercial | NZ On Screen". www.nzonscreen.com. NZ On Screen. Retrieved 2018-05-18. 
  6. ^ "NZ Herald". NZ Herald. ISSN 1170-0777. Retrieved 2018-05-18. 
  7. ^ "Ryan Reynolds Reveals Why He Cast Julian Dennison AKA Ricky Baker In Deadpool 2 | MTV". Retrieved 2018-05-18. 
  8. ^ "Rave reviews for Deadpool 2's 'fantastic' Julian Dennison". NZ Herald. 2018-05-15. ISSN 1170-0777. Retrieved 2018-05-18. 
  9. ^ Murphy, Charles (June 1, 2018). "Exclusive: 'Deadpool 2's' Julian Dennison Joins 'Godzilla vs. Kong'". That Hashtag Show. Retrieved June 1, 2018. 
  10. ^ "Credits | Chronesthesia". NZ On Screen. Retrieved 2018-05-18. 

External links[edit]