Much ado is made over all the categories of nominees for the Academy Awards, and this year's nominees for Best Actor are no exception. People debate who gave the most emotional performance, who showed the most versatility, or who is the sentimental favorite, but let's face it, only one criterion counts at the end of the day.
Who's the hottest -- hello.
When Gary Oldman is the least attractive in a category -- even if only by virtue of being a bit more mature than those other fellas -- you know you're being served a hot steaming platter of Oscar testosterone. I mean, check out how this category rounds out: Brad Pitt, George Clooney, and a couple of guys with foreign names we can't say but we'd be happy to just call "Baby" any day of the week.
Being Hollywood, these boys certainly aren't the only pretty ones to get their chance with a guy named Oscar. Through the years, talent and rugged good looks have collided many times on the red carpet and at the podium, but here are some of the hottest Best Actor winners over the years.
Paul Newman was no spring chicken when he brought the statue home in 1986 for "The Color of Money," but that kind of sex appeal has no expiration date. I doubt too many people see it as anything but a make up Oscar for the roles he really deserved it for, but better late than never. And even in his later years -- sorry -- Newman still had way more sex appeal than his pretty boy costar, Tom Cruise.
Many lists may include the beefy Russell Crowe for his 2000 "Gladiator" win, but the next two years proved far more fruitful for women who like brains with their brawn. Enter Denzel Washington in 2001 for "Training Day." What else can you say about the man -- he's Denzel. Chicks dig him.
In 2002 there's wasn't a whole lot of brawn in Adrien Brody, but a whopping dose of bravado; the winner for "The Pianist" dipped presenter Halle Berry over and planted a big one on her lips in his glee. And about a gazillion ladies swooned. You know you're hot with the ladies when you become a spokesman for ... a diet soda.
I don't know what happened to that guy, but he needs to come back. (For acting, not commercials.)
Double the Oscar, double the hotness for Daniel Day-Lewis, double winner in 2007 for "There Will Be Blood" and in 1989 for "My Left Foot." It's no wonder he was cast as a ladykiller in the not so successful "Nine." Hey, you can't win them all.
And speaking of Day-Lewis and hot Best Actor categories, who did he beat out for that 2007 Oscar? George Clooney, Johnny Depp, Viggo Mortensen, and Tommy Lee Jones. Mull over that for a moment if you doubt either this man's acting chops or sex appeal.
And last but not least, speaking of Mortensen, we need to get this man an Oscar. Like ... now. One of the most underrated actors of our times, but that's a story for another day.
The 84th Academy Awards air Sunday, Feb. 26, on ABC at 7 p.m. ET.
Check out coverage of the 84th Academy Awards on Yahoo! Movies
- George Clooney