People magazine has selected 33 different men for its coveted title of Sexiest Man Alive.
1985: Mel Gibson
1986: Mark Harmon
Mark Harmon received the second annual honor — largely thanks to his starring roles on two hit shows, "St. Elsewhere" and "Moonlighting."
1987: Harry Hamlin
Harry Hamlin made the cover during his five-year stint on the NBC legal drama "L.A. Law" as attorney Michael Kuzak.
1988: John F. Kennedy Jr.
John F. Kennedy Jr. — known in 1988 as political royalty, but something of a rebel — is one of only two winners to have died in the years since his cover. Kennedy was killed in a plane crash in 1999 with his wife, Carolyn Bessette-Kennedy, and his sister-in-law, Lauren Bessette.
1989: Sean Connery
Sean Connery was 59 when he scored the coveted cover, making him the oldest Sexiest Man Alive to date.
1990: Tom Cruise
1991: Patrick Swayze
1992: Nick Nolte
In 1992, People explained Nick Nolte's appeal as his being a "big-lug Adonis with the heart of gold."
1993: Richard Gere and Cindy Crawford
In 1993, People forwent the Sexiest Man Alive cover in favor of naming a Sexiest Couple Alive. The magazine chose newly married couple Cindy Crawford and Richard Gere, who split one year later.
Keanu Reeves was retroactively named 1994's Sexiest Man Alive.
Keanu Reeves never technically scored a cover; People never picked a Sexiest Man Alive in 1994.
But the magazine's editorial director retroactively bestowed the "Speed" star with People's honor in 2015.
1995: Brad Pitt
1996: Denzel Washington
1997: George Clooney
George Clooney secured his first Sexiest Man title while portraying the brooding Dr. Doug Ross on "ER."
1998: Harrison Ford
1999: Richard Gere
When Gere was named the Sexiest Man Alive in 1999, his ex-girlfriend Diane Von Furstenberg spoke glowingly of the decision.
"He walked like a biker, and that attracted me," she told People. "I knew I was going to get my hands on him."
2000: Brad Pitt
2001: Pierce Brosnan
Pierce Brosnan was known as James Bond when he landed on People's coveted cover.
2002: Ben Affleck
"Chicks gravitate to him," Affleck's friend Kevin Smith, a director, told People at the time. "The word on the street is that he's the ideal man, chatty, gorgeous, generous and intelligent."
2003: Johnny Depp
He has since fallen out of favor with many fans — though, considering his starring role in the "Fantastic Beasts" franchise, not with Hollywood. In 2016, Depp was accused of domestic abuse by his ex-wife Amber Heard, a claim that she continues to maintain. He denies it.
2004: Jude Law
Jude Law, another future "Harry Potter" film star, scored People's most famous cover in the early 2000s.
"He's the most beautiful man who ever walked the earth — an absolutely perfect oil painting," Naomi Watts told People in 2004.
2005: Matthew McConaughey
Matthew McConaughey scored the cover for People's 20th anniversary of Sexiest Man Alive after he became known for starring in popular romantic comedies, like "The Wedding Planner" and "How to Lose a Guy in 10 Days."
2006: George Clooney
Clooney became the third man, after Pitt and Gere, to win People's honor twice.
2007: Matt Damon
2008: Hugh Jackman
2009: Johnny Depp
Depp landed on his second cover on the heels of his role in "Alice in Wonderland."
2010: Ryan Reynolds
Ryan Reynolds' forthcoming role in "Green Lantern" — and his self-deprecating humor — helped him become the first Canadian Sexiest Man Alive.
"The most difficult part is going to be organically working this title into a conversation with random strangers," he told the magazine.
2011: Bradley Cooper
"I think it's really cool that a guy who doesn't look like a model can have this," Bradley Cooper told People after being named Sexiest Man Alive.
2012: Channing Tatum
2013: Adam Levine
Maroon 5 front man Adam Levine became the first musician and second nonactor — out of only five total — to grace People's Sexiest Man Alive cover.
2014: Chris Hemsworth
Chris Hemsworth has stolen hearts as Thor throughout the litany of Marvel's "The Avengers" franchise, which made him a natural pick for 2014's Sexiest Man Alive after "Thor: The Dark World" hit theaters the year before.
2015: David Beckham
Despite being the first and only athlete to be honored with the annual cover, David Beckham told People, "I never feel that I'm an attractive, sexy person."
2016: Dwayne "The Rock" Johnson
2017: Blake Shelton
Blake Shelton is the second musician ever to be given People's highest honor (after his costar on "The Voice").
The decision to pick Shelton, however, did not go over well.
2018: Idris Elba
The 47-year-old actor also appeared in multiple Marvel Cinematic Universe films as the keeper of the Asgardian bridge, Heimdall. There has even been a fan-fueled campaign to crown him as the next James Bond.
"I was like, 'Come on, no way. Really?'" Elba told People of being named Sexiest Man Alive. "Looked in the mirror, I checked myself out. I was like, 'Yeah, you are kind of sexy today.' But to be honest, it was just a nice feeling. It was a nice surprise — an ego boost for sure."
2019: John Legend
John Legend is only the fourth man of color to be chosen and the third-ever musician — all three of whom have starred as coaches on NBC's "The Voice."
The "All Of Me" singer has released five critically renowned R&B albums, two of which have been certified platinum. His Sexiest Man Alive title came shortly after the release of "A Legendary Christmas Deluxe," the deluxe edition of his sixth studio album and first Christmas album.
Legend's wife, Chrissy Teigen, had an extremely on-brand reaction to her husband's announcement: "all downhill from here," she tweeted.
"She's proud of me," Legend told his fellow coaches on "The Voice." "You know, she makes fun of me almost all the time, but she hasn't even been snarky about this. She's like legit proud of me. I finally impressed my wife!"
2020: Michael B. Jordan
Michael B. Jordan is the fifth man of color to receive People's honor.
He first rose to fame playing quarterback Vince Howard on NBC's "Friday Night Lights," but his Hollywood breakthrough came in 2013, when he starred in Ryan Coogler's directorial debut, "Fruitvale Station."
That same year, at 26 years old, he was featured in People's first annual Ones to Watch portfolio.
Jordan has also made his name as a passionate activist and marched in Black Lives Matter protests during the summer of 2020.
"When my grandmother was alive, it was something that she collected, and then my mom naturally reads it a lot and my aunts as well," he told People. "This is one that they're definitely going to have a special place for."
2021: Paul Rudd
Paul Rudd's breakthrough role came in 1995, starring opposite Alicia Silverstone in the popular coming-of-age drama "Clueless."
He rose through Hollywood primarily as a comedic actor, starring in films like "Wet Hot American Summer," "Knocked Up," and "Anchorman." He also portrayed prominent reoccurring characters in beloved TV shows "Friends" and "Parks and Recreation."
Today, Rudd is renowned for his role as Ant-Man in the MCU, as well as the critically acclaimed Netflix original series "Living With Yourself."
The 52-year-old actor said his wife was "stupefied" when he received People's coveted crown.
"I'm hoping now that I'll finally be invited to some of those sexy dinners with Clooney and Pitt and B Jordan," he told the magazine. "And I figure I'll be on a lot more yachts. I'm excited to expand my yachting life."
He continued: "And I'll probably try to get better at brooding in really soft light. I like to ponder. I think this is going to help me become more inward and mysterious. And I'm looking forward to that."
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