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Will winning 'Sexiest Man Alive' lose 'Australia' hunk Hugh Jackman the Oscar?

November 19, 2008 |  3:16 pm

This has been quite a week already for Hugh Jackman and it is only Wednesday. On Monday, he got good reviews from his hometown papers when the long-awaited epic "Australia" world premiered in Sydney. And today, People magazine named him the "Sexiest Man Alive." However, while those critical hurrahs help Hugh in his first serious Oscar campaign, being hailed as a himbo won't win him many votes.

Hugh_jackman

Indeed, older male academy members have a long-standing tradition of slapping the stud of the moment when it comes time to hand out hardware. (Read all about my Slap the Stud Oscar Theory.) Jackman certainly checks all the boxes when it comes to qualifying as a stud: rugged good looks, those abs, a dreamy accent, a lovely blonde wife. And he won't be winning over any of those old-timers by playing the romantic cowboy who rides to Nicole Kidman's rescue in "Australia."

While Kidman benefitted from the Babe Factor when she won best actress six years ago for "The Hours," her ex-hubby Tom Cruise has seen his Oscar hopes dashed three times. Old-timers who have been put out to pasture still love the young fillies, but they resent these handsome bucks. Their message to Hollywood heartthrobs: "You already have it all — fame, fortune and females aplenty. So, sorry, pal, no Oscar for you just yet."

The solution? Just like the pretty women who de-glamourize themselves (Marion Cotillard, "La Vie en Rose"; Charlize Theron, "Monster") to win an Oscar, so too can the handsome hunks who pack on a few pounds, a la two-time Sexiest Man Alive (1997, 2006) George Clooney in 2005's "Syriana." Last year, Javier Bardem was the hunk du jour whose unflattering Buster Brown bowl cut in "No Country for Old Men" probably helped him win the supporting actor award. And this year, two-time Sexiest Man Alive (1995, 2000) Brad Pitt hides his good looks under layers of latex in "The Curious Case of Benjamin Button."

Last year, with Clooney reverting to his usual movie-star-handsome-self in "Michael Clayton," the Slap the Stud Syndrome put Daniel Day-Lewis ("There Will Be Blood") back in the winner's circle, just as it had in 1989 when his performance in "My Left Foot" edged out first-time nominee Cruise up for "Born on the Fourth of July." Cruise had to make do with winning the 1990 Sexiest Man Alive title. Last year's other pretty-boy nominee — Johnny Depp ("Sweeney Todd") — was the 2003 Sexiest Man Alive.

These perennial nominees can take comfort in the fact that other studs have won a best-actor Oscar later in life when they become more like the geezers. Al Pacino was 52 when nomination No. 7 for "Scent of a Woman" in 1992 turned out to be the lucky one. And still-handsome Paul Newman was 62 when he also won with best actor nod No. 7 for the 1986 film "The Color of Money." This year, 78-year-young Clint Eastwood can hope third time is the charm if he contends in the lead actor category for "Gran Torino."

Of course while there are the exceptions that prove the rule — both Marlon Brando and Clark Gable won at the height of their careers — many more leading men have been slapped through the years, never winning Oscars for acting: Warren Beatty, Charles Boyer, Montgomery Clift, James Dean, Leonardo DiCaprio, Kirk Douglas, Albert Finney, Peter Fonda, Harrison Ford, Cary Grant, Rock Hudson, Jude Law, Marcello Mastroianni, Steve McQueen, Robert Mitchum, Nick Nolte, Robert Redford, Burt Reynolds, Will Smith, and John Travolta.

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Comments

hugh is so hot and self center i dont care if he gets an oscar some day i just wany to see him

That individual who dissed Australian men and the country of Australia itself is clueless!

Australia is a beautiful country with warm, lovely people of which Hugh Jackman is a wonderful representative. He is a brilliant actor who is sexy not because of what he has on the outside (which is pretty great) but mostly because of who he is - a wonderful, generous family man who is also humble and kind! I cannot praise Hugh enough!!

"Gross"? What? I suppose it's because you're an "oldlady" and have lost your sight. Anyway...to each his/her own.

WHY IS WILL SMITH THE ONLY BLACK MALE BEING VOTED IN AS THE SEXIEST MAN ALIVE.THERE IS OMAR EPPS,BILLY DEE WILLIAMS,HILLHARPER,ETC.I THINK IT'S VERY DISCRIMINATING FOR YOU ALL NOT TO VOTE OR CHOSE A BLACK MALE ACTOR FOR THE SEXIEST MAN ALIVE ,THAT'S VERY UGLY.THE BLACK ACTORS NEED TO GET THEIR OWN CATERGORY GOING ON! VERY UPSET !

I'm sure I'm not the only female to find Mr Jackman a tad too... chiseled.

I mean, since when does a man needs to go to the gym every single day to be sexy ?

Sean Connery wasn't as muscular and he remains for me the definition of manliness.

Nowadays men are encuraged to be as superficial and self-centered as their female counterparts.

I bet Jackman even has a diet coach.

Sorry I don't think it's THAT sexy

But I guess in that society the criteria is :

men =overly muscular
women=anorexic

I realize an Oscar is a mark of distinction for the stars but frankly, my dear, I don't give .... well, you know the rest. I have never watched a movie or a star because he/she/it won an award. I watch who I like and what interests me. I will watch this movie because of Hugh Jackman and Nicole Kidman. If he wins, I'll be happy for him but it won't change how I feel. Truth be told, in our family an Oscar win is usually considered a strike against a movie, as are good reviews by "experts."

"Austalia" is the huge bomb-ola of the Oscar season so far. They held it back for a reason. It's nearly 3 hours & has several false endings. People were running for the exits with the coats, 2, 3 times, I heard. No BP, BA awards here.

Australian men are the best looking men around. You must be nuts! Hugh Jackman is the best of the best. It's about time!

Austrailian men are arrogant and ugly. This guy is gross! I'll be so glad when the fad following masses return Austrailia to it's rightful place in world view: a backwoods wasteland full of rednecks!

Iam waiting this movie and i love you hugh and i wish you win an oscar for this movie

I LOVE YOU HUGH! Finallly he gottt it :)

It's an unfortunate truth about the Oscars.


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