The 43-year-old actor said in an interview with Fast Company published Tuesday that he and Lively, 32, are "deeply" sorry for holding their 2012 wedding at Boone Hall in South Carolina.
"It's something we'll always be deeply and unreservedly sorry for," Reynolds said. "It's impossible to reconcile. What we saw at the time was a wedding venue on Pinterest. What we saw after was a place built on devastating tragedy."
Boone Hall is a working plantation that had formerly had slaves. While some objected to Reynolds and Lively's choice of venue at the time of the wedding, the couple didn't face major backlash until 2018 when Reynolds tweeted in support of the Marvel film Black Panther, which features a mostly Black cast.
"Years ago we got married again at home -- but shame works in weird ways," Reynolds told Fast Company. "A giant [expletive] mistake like that can either cause you to shut down or it can reframe things and move you into action. It doesn't mean you won't [expletive] up again. But repatterning and challenging lifelong social conditioning is job that doesn't end."
Reynolds and Lively gave $200,000 to the NAACP Legal Defense Fund in June following George Floyd's death. The couple expressed regret for past ignorance and said they want to use their "privilege and platform to be an ally" going forward.
"We're ashamed that in the past we've allowed ourselves to be uninformed about how deeply rooted systemic racism is," the pair said on Instagram. "We look back and see so many mistakes which have led us to deeply examine who we are and who we want to become. They've led us to huge avenues of education."
Reynolds and Lively married in September 2012 and have two daughters, James, 5, and Inez, 3. Reynolds plays the title character in Deadpool and its sequel, Deadpool 2.