From George Clooney to Harrison Ford, People’s Sexiest Man Alive list has been showcasing the finest men on earth since 1985.
Now, after months of anticipation the magazine finally has revealed this year’s winner is British actor Idris Elba. The Thor star told People he was surprised when he received the news, but said the honour has given him a boost of self-confidence.
“I was like, ‘Come on, no way’,” the 46-year-old told the publication. “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.”
Despite his new title, the actor, who was tipped earlier this year to replace Daniel Craig as James Bond, told People he went through an awkward phase before hitting his stride.
“I was very tall and skinny,” Elba said. “And my name was Idrissa Akuna Elba, okay? I got picked on a little bit. But as soon as I could grow a moustache, I was the coolest kid on the block. Grew a moustache, had some muscles, bonkers.”
However, it appears Elba is already having plenty of fun with his new title. He shared an image on Instagram with the caption: “Who’d have thought it! I’m honoured & thankful.”
Adoring fans were quick to comment, with one writing: “This man is very handsome.”
Another added: “This has been in the making a long time! Congratulations!!!”
Renowned for his stellar acting abilities, Elba won a Golden Globe for his lead role in BBC television detective series Luther, played a god in Marvels Thor franchise and appeared in US television series The Wire.
The twice-married actor is now engaged to model Sabrina Dhowre.
Read more: Blake Shelton is People’s Sexiest Man Alive
Country singer Blake Shelton won the title last year, and ahead of this year’s big announcement the 42-year-old told Ellen DeGeneres that he already feels his sexiness trickling away.
“I feel like sexy ends when I’m not Sexiest Man Alive anymore,” Shelton joked on Monday’s episode. “I don’t feel like it exists anymore, I feel like it’s over.”
Men who have won the title throughout the years (who are now over 60 and looking great!) include Mel Gibson, who won the first title ever, Harrison Ford, Sean Connery, Pierce Bronson, Richard Gere and, although he’s not 60 just yet, 57-year-old George Clooney.