Desperate Oscar hires male escort

Just when it seemed the award show couldn’t get worse, Hugh Jackman is chosen as host


Desperate Oscar hires male escort

As if we needed further proof that the Great Depression 2.0 is upon us, the producers of Hollywood’s most opulent showbiz extravaganza have decided that wit is a luxury item they can no longer afford. After two decades of hiring comedians to MC the Oscars, in a bid to revive plummeting ratings the Academy has chosen a hunk over a humorist. This year’s Oscar host is Wolverine. Or, as the multi-taloned X-Man is known outside his superhero franchise, Hugh Jackman.

Last year, the Oscars’ TV ratings sunk by 24 per cent to an all-time low. This should surprise no one. The TV audience is fragmenting. And by the time the Oscars roll around, we’ve seen so many trophies handed out—from the Golden Globes to the People’s Choice Awards—fatigue has set in. The Oscars may be the only awards that matter, but the show has become a pageant of robotic efficiency. The stars are so carefully coutured that no one makes wardrobe mistakes anymore, and spontaneity has been scripted out of existence. But instead of blaming the show’s lifeless production values, military pacing, and morbid tributes to the living dead, the Academy has ditched Jon Stewart—the sharpest MC it’s had in a while—and replaced him with a vapid pretty boy.

Stewart, who had the gig for two years, was an anti-host, an outsider who satirized and dignified the Oscars at the same time. The two go hand-in-hand: the MC is Oscar’s valet and his court jester. Jackman looks more like a male escort. Oscar has always been the gold standard of celebrity currency; it’s sad to see him deflated by tabloid journalism.

Currently starring as a beefcake cowboy in Australia, a US$130-million spectacle that’s being promoted as an epic advertorial by the Aussie tourist board, Jackman seems in no danger of being nominated for an Oscar himself. These days, his chief claim to fame is that People magazine has named him the Sexiest Man Alive. This is a dubious qualification for an Oscar host unless he plans to wear his tuxedo shirtless. Jackman is not quite so sexy from the neck up. But some may find it titillating that he has no earlobes. His ears connect to his head at the base with a Porsche-like curve—making him part of an exotic breed of lobeless stars that includes Mick Jagger and Tom Cruise.

Aside from his status as a sexy beast, it seems Jackman’s main qualification for hosting the Oscars is that he has hosted the Tonys. Which is like saying being governor of Alaska is a qualification for being vice-president of the United States. Jackman, in fact, hosted the Tonys so impressively that he won an Emmy for it—the only major prize he has ever won, unless you count a 2001 Saturn Award for Best Actor bestowed by the U.S. Academy of Science Fiction, Fantasy and Horror Films for his work in X-Men.

If the Academy wants to regress to its golden age, however, Jackman may be the perfect host. Australia is like a vast, mutant Oscar montage. Crammed with references to The Wizard of Oz, The African Queen and Gone With the Wind, this all-you-can-eat barbie buffet is a western, a war picture, a romance, and a post-colonial lament for Aboriginal injustice. Directed by Baz Luhrmann (Moulin Rouge!) and larded with riffs on Somewhere Over the Rainbow, it plays like a closeted musical. You keep waiting for characters to burst into song at any moment.

As luck would have it, Jackman is a song and dance man, having starred in such musicals as Beauty and the Beast and Oklahoma! Yikes. If the Oscars are intent on boosting ratings with younger viewers, reverting to old-fashioned production numbers may not be the wisest move. Besides, who could ever hope to top Rob Lowe’s infamous 1989 Oscar-opening duet with Snow White?

Whether playing this as Crocodile Dundee Redux or X-Men’s Wolverine, Jackman’s strong suit seems to be animal magnetism. He looks best with a beard and a cowboy hat. In Australia he appears most at home riding horses, herding cattle or stripping off his shirt by the campfire to dazzle Nicole Kidman with his bronzed, gym-ripped torso. “You really have a way with horses,” she coos after watching him whisper a steed into submission. When she invites him to a ball, he says, “I mix with dingoes, not duchesses.” He turns up anyway, suddenly clean-shaven in a white tux. Perhaps Jackman can take a cue from Billy Crystal, who once made his Oscar entrance on horseback. But the Sexiest Man Alive would have to up the ante. He could bring a dingo.


Desperate Oscar hires male escort

  1. Puleeeaase! Jackman has not only won an Emmy, he won a Tony and ALL of the lesser Broadway awards that year. He’s been nominated for a Golden Globe and won awards in his native land. The new Oscarcast producers have announced their controversial choice of host – that’s the first of their ideas to make the show worth watching. Jackman hosted shows in Australia but even more importantly, his run on Broadway made him adept at ad-libbing and wowing the audience with his talent and wit. Please promise you’ll give an honest evaluation of his hosting skills post-Oscars and not be blinded by his pretty boy looks. There’s so much more to the man.

  2. Hugh Jackman is far more than a “vapid pretty boy”. It’s a shame your ignorance (or maybe it’s jealousy) doesn’t let you see that he has more talent in his pinkie finger than many so-called actors/celebrities have in their entire bodies. The producers of the Oscars knew what they were doing when they asked him to host the show. And by the way, many of us thoroughly enjoyed the movie “Australia”, in large part because of Hugh Jackman’s wonderful performance. I’ve seen it more than once and plan to see it again this weekend.

  3. Wait…you’ve studied Jackman’s earlobes??? Something he can’t help, by the way, it’s what God gave him – and in Jackman’s case, God did a mighty fine job when He was giving out looks, brains, and talent. Hugh will be a fine Oscars host, although I’m certain that when the ratings aren’t what you think they should be, Hugh will be blamed. Try nominating movies and actors that the audience really gives a shit about.

  4. While everyone is entitled to an opinion, I can’t say much for yours, replete as it is with folderol and convoluted reasoning. You call Jackman a “vapid pretty boy,” yet say he’s less than sexy “from the neck up.” You can’t have it both ways. Plus, no less than that American Academy of Facial Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery has declared that Jackman “epitomizes the current ideal” of male attractiveness in the 2000s. Nor is he vapid. He holds a bachelor’s degree in technology and turned down a well-paying soap, which would have been his first major professional job, to undergo three rigorous years of classical training as an actor.

    As for not being nominated, very often superlative performances go unrecognized for various reasons. Some films do not garner the accolades they deserve until years later, as I believe will be the case of THE FOUNTAIN. Director Darren Aronofsky correctly called Jackman’s performance in that film “brave” and the most searing depiction by a male of grief ever seen on the screen. You probably haven’t seen the movie; do yourself a favor and do so. You will be blown away by it and Jackman. He not only should have been nominated for the Oscar, he should have won it.

    No real awards? You probably also missed another blistering performance in ERSKINEVILLE KINGS. He won the Australian Star of the Year award for that–his first film.

    Don’t even put Rob Lowe and Hugh Jackman together in the same sentence. Equating them in terms of singing and musical prowess makes about as much sense as linking Paris Hilton and Orson Welles. You obviously know nothing about Jackman’s ability to connect with a live audience and engage them fully. He hosted or performed on numerous variety programs in Australia, won the Australian version of the Tony for SUNSET BOULEVARD, was nominated for an Olivier for his OKLAHOMA! in London, and swept all the major theater awards for his amazing performance onstage in THE BOY FROM OZ, winning over the usually hard-nosed New York critics, It’s pretty clear you didn’t see THE BOY FROM OZ, in which he ad libbed quite a bit with the audience in every show. That segment was considered one of the highlights of the show and deserverdly so. He singlehandedly turned that show from so-so to a hit.

    Jackman will be a splendid host. I hope you enjoy the taste of crow.

    • Who the hell is he. Am I that much of a senior?

  5. guys, lets go to the bar and let the ladies banter over this.
    el oh el

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