John Krasinski decided to give back on his 40th birthday, urging fans to donate to a non-profit organisation rather than send him presents.

The Jack Ryan star reached the milestone on Sunday, and took to his social media accounts to share a video to mark the occasion.

"John Krasinski here and it is October 20th, which means it's my 40th birthday," a smiling John said as he sat surrounded by balloons. "And I know what a lot of you are thinking, 'Wow, he's old!' Thank you. I am. But what you also might be thinking is, 'Really? Well, that must have slipped my mind. What do I get that guy on his big day!?' And that is really, really too kind.

"You know, if you're one of those people who says, 'Please, no gifts on my birthday,' you and I are very different," he added. "Because I like gifts. I demand them. I'll go so far as to make you feel very awkward if you don't get me one. But, lucky for you, I'm old school. I like cash. Yep, that Goodfellas-style, put-it-right-in-a-pillowcase kinda cash."

Holding up a pink pillowcase, John joked: "Yes, I stole that from my daughter's bedroom because she also forgot it was my birthday. So, if you forgot it was my birthday, don't worry about it."

He then asked anybody who wanted to send him a gift to instead make a donation in his name to Family Reach - a national non-profit that provides assistance to families with a child or parent suffering from cancer. John and his wife Emily Blunt have been working with the organisation for many years.

"So, open up your hearts, open up your cyber wallets and make my birthday dreams come true!" he concluded the video.

Sharing the clip, John wrote in the caption: "Holy moly, I'm 40!?!?...... so what did you get me? Didn't get me anything? Don't worry I'm easy."