While watching (an Asperger’s Syndrome–afflicted!) Hugh Dancy romance Rose Byrne in Adam, out July 29, we thought to ourselves, Hmmm, that’s funny, almost every actor we adore at this moment is British. Granted, every few years the media touts the British invasion of Hollywood, but today, evidence truly abounds. From Jim Sturgess to Ed Westwick, Robert Pattinson to Gerard Butler, there’s a whole slew of gentlemen with delicate cheekbones from across the pond vying for our ticket-buying affection. Herewith, we anoint the best of the swoony new crop.
Most Appealing Role: In Confessions of a Shopaholic, Dancy sweeps Isla Fisher off her feet with his furrowed brow and lack of coordination. Oh yeah, and his inordinate cuteness.
Trademark vibe: Clever ladykiller.
Most Appealing Role: In Pride & Prejudice, Friend plays Mr. Wickham, the handsome love interest of Keira Knightley — he was conniving, but irresistable. It’s no wonder she started dating him in real life.
Trademark vibe: Earnest romanticism.
Most appealing role: As Jude in Across the Universe, Sturgess held his own, crooning sexy Beatles tunes like “Something,” then transforming into angry sexiness with “Revolution.”
Trademark vibe: Adorably sweet.
Type: Brooding hottie.
Most Appealing Role: As gentlemanly Bill in True Blood, Moyer romances Anna Paquin in true vampire fashion — with his sexy fangs.
Trademark vibe: Intensity.
Most Appealing Role:
Known for his portrayal of Chuck in Gossip Girl, Westwick commands the small screen in a way that is awfully sexy for his mere 22 years of age.
Trademark vibe: Sneer-y, but weirdly compelling.
Type: Man’s man.
Most Appealing Role: As Gerry in the admittedly treacly P.S. I Love You, Butler plays a dead Irish hunk who guides his widow, Hilary Swank, to happiness. Butler’s character dies early on, and you spend the rest of the movie wishing the studly Scot would pull a Patrick Swayze and visit Swank from the grave.
Trademark vibe: Macho swagger.
Most appealing role: As the abstinent vampire Edward Cullen in Twilight, Pattinson stared straight into Kristen Stewart’s soul, sending teenage girls into a crazed frenzy.
Trademark vibe: Hipster aloofness.