Donald Trump, TIME Magazine

Martin Schoeller for TIME

Forget Miss USA...how about Mr. USA?

Donald Trump got up close and personal with an American bald eagle, named Uncle Sam, no less, in a photo shoot for Time magazine.

The 69-year-old Republican presidential candidate and real estate mogul appears solo on the cover of the outlet's latest issue. In another pic, he is seen standing in a room inside his Trump Tower building in New York City, dressed in a navy suit and royal blue tie, with his fine, feathered friend. The eagle is perched on his arm as he gives a thumbs up with the other.

Photographer Michael Schoeller told Time Trump was "a little hesitant" to hold the 27-year-old eagle and that the presidential candidate is "very difficult to photograph."

"If you ask him to look up a bit, he says no or he just doesn't do it," he said. "He literally has one angle. If I ask him to smile, he puts on a big grin and then he goes back to his Zoolander 'blue steel' look. And the 'blue steel' stays for as ever long as it takes to get the photograph."

Zoolander GIF

"Donald Trump is an icon and this bald eagle is an icon," the bird's owner, Jonathan Wood, told Time.

Trump has, to the surprise of many, emerged as the frontrunner in the GOP race. He has stirred controversy since he announced his candidacy on June 16, when he made comments about Mexican immigrants that many found offensive, which spurred NBC, which had aired his Miss USA and Miss Universe pageants, to cut ties with him.

He had also sparked anger over insulting remarks made about Fox News host Megyn Kelly, who moderated a GOP debate earlier this month and had grilled him about past offensive comments he made about women, and recently drew criticism after dissing Heidi Klum's looks.

Donald Trump, TIME Magazine

Martin Schoeller for TIME

"The Donald has landed," Time's headline reads. "Deal with it."

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