Paul Rudd is having a hard time accepting his new title of PEOPLE’s 2021 Sexiest Man Alive.
The actor, 52, has heard it all — kind, self-deprecating, affable, hardworking, all labels he’s embraced to some degree. But s*xy? That’s a little outside his wheelhouse.
“I do have an awareness, enough to know that when people hear that I’d be picked for this, they would say, ‘What?’ ” the actor tells PEOPLE in this week’s cover story. “This is not false humility. There are so many people that should get this before me.”
Such humble deflection — coupled with those gorgeous green eyes and easy grin — is exactly why audiences have fallen in love with Rudd over the years. This month alone he’s reteaming with Will Ferrell for the new Apple TV+ series The Shrink Next Door and taking on one of Hollywood’s most treasured franchises with Ghostbusters: Afterlife.
Despite his rise to leading man superstardom, Rudd insists he’s most happy at home with his wife of 18 years, Julie, 53, and their kids Jack, 17, and Darby, 12.
“When I think about myself, I think of myself as a husband and a father, like I’m that,” he says. “I just hang out with my family when I’m not working. That’s what I kind of like the most.”