Paul Rudd Is Named People's Sexiest Man Alive of 2021

The wait is over: Paul Rudd has been named People magazine's Sexiest Man of the Year, dethroning 2020 recipient Michael B. Jordan.

By Corinne Heller, Ryan Gajewski Nov 10, 2021 5:27 AMTags

And the title of People's Sexiest Man Alive of 2021 goes to... Ant-Man himself, Paul Rudd.

Stephen Colbert announced the recipient of the magazine's annual honor during CBS' The Late Show on Tuesday, Nov. 9. The star is featured on the cover of People's annual Sexiest Man Alive issue, out now.

Rudd, who can be soon be seen starring in Apple TV+'s The Shrink Next Door, dethrones Michael B. Jordan, who was given the title in 2020.

The announcement arrived at the end of a lengthy comedic sketch in which Colbert tested the 52-year-old Anchorman performer to determine whether he's sexy. This included having Rudd dump copious amounts of water on himself and attempt to deliver the perfect slouch.

At the end of the bit, Colbert informed Rudd that he "tested negative for sexy." This led the actor to humbly reply, in part, that the verdict "makes sense. I appreciate you just giving me a shot, honestly."

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Then Colbert changed his tune and revealed that, in fact, Rudd is the Sexiest Man Alive. "Don't you see, Paul? There's nothing sexier than humility," the host shared. "That was the last test, and you passed, Paul!"

Rudd, known for his youthful features, further proved his humility in the People cover story for the honor. Indeed, he told the magazine he does "have an awareness, enough to know that when people hear that I'd be picked for this, they would say, 'What?'" 

Jim Spellman/WireImage

The Friends standout added that his wife of 18 years, Julie Yaeger, who he met shortly after filming Clueless, was the only person he told about winning the title, and she was "stupefied." He continued, "After some giggling and shock, she said, 'Oh, they got it right.' And that was very sweet. She was probably not telling the truth, but what's she going to say?

Other past recipients include Mel Gibson—the first to be given the honor in 1985—John Legend, Ben Affleck, Denzel Washington, Idris Elba, Sean Connery, Tom Cruise, Patrick Swayze, Hugh Jackman, Johnny Depp, Adam Levine, Ryan Reynolds, Channing Tatum, Blake Shelton and Dwayne Johnson.

"Listen, my Sexiest Man Alive title is in perpetuity. It's for life. Right?," Johnson joked to People in a recent interview. "I don't give it up."

Legend, who was named People's Sexiest Man Alive in 2019, felt differently towards the end of his reign, telling the magazine just before Jordan dethroned him that he was "so ready to relinquish this title."

"Going by my Twitter mentions when I was named of who people said should have been picked over me, I got a lot of Jason Momoa," the Voice coach and singer recalled. "That's the one person that stood out in the Twitter feedback."

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