A Birthday Tribute – 42 Reasons We Love Gerry Butler

The sexy Scot Gerry Butler turns 42 today!

This is my third birthday tribute for the actor… well, since he stole my heart back in December 2004, this marked the 6th year of me crushing over him, ahah. As I told you in my Case of Being Spellbound post the other day, I’m fiercely loyal when it comes to certain crushes, and Gerry managed to keep my interest despite some questionable movie choices. Let’s be fair, folks, what actor hasn’t made a bad move in their entire career, right? So no, I’m definitely not gonna hold it against him for doing The Ugly Truth, he’s redeemed himself in other performances since, and I’m looking forward to his upcoming roles in Shakespearean thriller Coriolanus, soccer comedy Playing the Field and surfer biopic Of Men and Mavericks.

So anyway, as I did with the Rufus Sewell b’day post, I’ve asked Becky, my partner in crime when it comes to cinematic crushes to come up with half of the reasons… so here’s the list starting with hers until #21:

1. OK, let’s face facts. He’s tall, dark, handsome and oozing with sex appeal. ‘Nuf said.

2. He makes an intimidating and ruthless character simmering and sensual as The Phantom of the Opera (2004).

3. And on top of that, he has a deep, resounding singing voice to boot.

4. He’s very friendly and generous with autographs and pictures for his fans, but to the paparazzi, not so much.

5. Because he’s bared his lovely bum three (official) times: His first film, Her Majesty, Mrs. Brown (1997), 300 (2006) and Law Abiding Citizen (2009). There’s also quite an infamous “unofficial” occasion too, but it shall remain unnamed. (Hint: it starts with a G) 😀

6. He can be a total goofball, especially anywhere near the vicinity of fellow Scot and late night talk show host, Craig Ferguson.

7. Talk about versatile. He’s played a brother to a confidant of Queen Victoria, Dracula, a young, out-of-work, scheming cad, Attila the Hun, a lonely alcoholic juror who finds love in the wrong place, a time traveling archaeologist, a temporary father to a young deaf boy, Beowulf, a Spartan king, a very loving, charming husband who dies much too soon, an amateur gangster, the voice of a father to an animated boy who ends up taming dragons, a reformed drug addict turned preacher, who in turn gives back life and hope to impoverished children in Africa, a soccer coach, a surfing coach, and a lot more. Whew!

8. Is he an actor, or is he a model? Hard to tell sometimes especially when you see some his (sizzling ;)) photo shoots.

9. Because he performs the most touching, evocative song ever: No One Would Listen. It was shamelessly, and erroneously cut from Phantom of the Opera.

10. He is a real-life hero. He once saved a young boy from drowning in the River Tay in Scotland while filming Mrs. Brown, and received a Certificate of Bravery from the Royale Humane Society.

11. He is the only man I’ve ever seen doing pull ups in a muscle shirt (oh yeah!) UPSIDE DOWN from the bars ON TOP of his jail cell in Lara Croft Tomb Raider: The Cradle of Life. How’s that for macho?!

12. He has steely, but playful green/gray eyes.

13. Because I really believe his performance and being a producer of Machine Gun Preacher will create awareness of the terrible conditions in Sudan, and many, many people who otherwise wouldn’t will be moved, provoked to help; his hopes are high.

14. He played two characters in the wonderful children’s film Nim’s Island: the caring father and the action hero.

15. He readily admits he can shed a tear, sometimes a little too easily.

16. He doesn’t take himself too seriously.

17. He won the role of Phantom over Hollywood heavyweights Antonio Banderas and John Travolta. Impressive! (Oh, no, there I go, the Phantom, again!)

18. He quit drinking AND smoking.

19. He has one of the most memorable kisses ever in Dear Frankie.20. He did many of his own stunts in 300.

21. He’s one of two of the most famous and best actors ever to come out of Scotland (of course, Sean Connery is the other one) 😀

***

22. Looks is one thing, but screen presence is everything for an actor, and Gerry has both in spades. He’s one of those actor that’s quite challenging to ‘steal’ scenes from.

23. He’s so ridiculously entertaining in interviews, there are too many memorable ones to mention, but this Phantom interview by Japanese TV still takes the cake. It’s such a hoot to watch him indulging the fawning female interviewer with her dream of doing a duet with him:


Another memorable interview is this one with Canadian’s Tribute magazine where he unknowingly serenaded Bonnie the interviewer. Lucky gal!


24. I like an actor with a deprecating sense of humor. Gerry definitely has that as he didn’t mind poking fun at himself during his SNL hosting stint. The Beauty & The Beast skit is my favorite!

25. I have no shame in admitting I adore P.S. I Love You. Gerry playing Gerry, the dead husband who helped his wife with her grief is precious and really gets my heart aflutter. He’s so believably goofy but loving, and there are tons of memorable scenes (i.e. the Karaoke scene) in it that lets him relish on his gregarious side.

26. He always mix things up in his career, playing a different character from one movie to the next. People always just remember him in the rom-coms, but he’s played a variety of different roles post 300. A family man-turned-vigilante in Law Abiding Citizen, a dual role of scientist dad/Indiana Jones-y adventurer Nim’s Island, and a futuristic prisoner in Gamer, just to name a few.

27. I like the fact that he doesn’t seem like a vain actor when it comes to his physique. Post 300, everyone expected him to still have his ridiculous 12-pack abs, but he didn’t mind looking a bit pudgy in Nim’s Island, which makes me love him more!

28. It’s a shame this film went straight to DVD, but Shattered is actually a pretty decent thriller with a twist. Butler outshone Pierce Brosnan as the baddie, though it’s a bit hard to believe that him with his still buff physique won’t just take Brosnan out in some of the scenes. Watch the trailer below

29. I love Butler’s strength as King Leonidas, as well as his tender scenes with his wife Queen Gorgo.

30. In the October issue of L.A. Confidential magazine, the cover article says ‘Hollywood’s Last Bad Boy’ and he’s certainly got that swagger and untamed persona both on and off screen.

31. In that same magazine, he’s quoted in saying … “That’s the most exciting thing for me as an actor: Nobody can ever define you. They go, ‘Oh, he’s the action guy.’ ‘Oh, he’s the comedy guy.’ I’m not any of those things, and I never want to be categorized like that. People shouldn’t know what to expect from me.” I totally agree and his versatility is part of what I like most about him.

32. It’s all about the eyes… and his piercing greenish-gray pair are so hypnotically expressive.

33. Oh, and don’t forget the hair… he’s one of those rare actors who look fantastic in any kind of haircut… from a buzz cut in Lara Croft II to the shaggy long mane as a Mongolian in Attila. I’m lovin’ his long-ish style he’s sporting now for a role as a surfing instructor in Curtis Hanson’s upcoming movie.

The many faces... and hairstyles of Gerry Butler

34. Intelligence is sexy. His wit is evident in every interview he’s done. He’s got a law degree at Glasgow University and even served as President of Law Society, but yet he followed his heart to be an actor.

35. I read somewhere that he ‘…connect[s] with people who have a lot of pain…’ It’s that tortured-soul quality in some of the roles he’s played (The Phantom, Sam Childers in Machine Gun Preacher) that gets me every time.

36. I love the fact that he’s not ‘perfect’ looking nor too well-groomed. This Telegraph interviewer described him perfectly “…his face has a bruised, lived-in quality. There are laughter lines around his eyes and, with his beard and curly ringlets, he’s just starting to grey at the temples.” 

37. A guy who loves his mom is always a major plus in my book. Despite his success and being away from home, he’s still close to his mother Margaret.

38. His sense of adventure is admirable. He’s always game to try something different for a role or as a hobby… he recently took up surfing and told Craig Ferguson on his Late, Late Show that he’s been learning to fly a helicopter.

39. His comic timing is as great to watch as his action stuff, i.e. as One-Two Rocknrolla.

40. A sexy man looks and sounds good… he’s certainly got both with his irresistible Scottish brogue [sigh]

41. I respect an actor who’s dedicated to his craft and is dedicated to every role he plays. Butler’s willingness to take a massive pay cut to do Machine Gun Preacher and his killer training for 300 proves that he’s suffered for his art.

42. And lastly… he’s got that slightly crooked smile that can light up a room!

I’ll always be thankful to him that he didn’t push me away when I abruptly grabbed his hand back at TIFF 2005. Come to think of it, some actors might not be as gracious. And what’s more, he even remembered me when I saw him outside Elgin Theater and was kind enough to sign my picture!


So please join me in wishing the great Scot a happy birthday… and do share what’s your favorite Gerard Butler role.

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60 thoughts on “A Birthday Tribute – 42 Reasons We Love Gerry Butler

  1. Hi, Ruth and company:

    Standing by with more paper lunch bags and smelling salts. Should the ladies in attendance feel faint or the need to hyperventilate.

    There’s no question that Gerard Butler has paid his dues and I share your desire for ‘Machine Gun Preacher’ to be his breakout role and one to be taken seriously.

    Mr. Butler caught my eye and attention with ‘300’. How could he not? A very well done adaptation of Frank Miller’s classic and just a whisker under ‘Sin City’ for fidelity to the source material. Butler was born to play Leonidas and he did, flawlessly.

    Thought he was very good opposite Tom Wilkinson, Idris Elba, Tom Hardy and Thandie Newton in ‘RocknRolla’. Playing as close to a classic Hollywood Tough Guy as we are going to see nowadays. Though his later ‘Gamer’, ‘Law Abiding Citizen’ and ‘The Bounty Hunter’ were less than stellar.

    Mr. Butler seems blessed with the ability to bounce back from most anything. Playing the distraught Viking single dad personified in ‘How To Train Your Dragon’.

    Best wishes on your birthday, Mr. Butler!

    Looking forward very much to ‘Coriolanus’ and ‘Machine Gun Preacher’.

    1. Ahahaha… your ‘paper lunch bag’ comments never fail to make me laugh, Jack. No worries, I was prepared 😉

      Unfortunately MGP suffers from poor distribution and marketing, disappearing from theaters before people had the chance to see them, it’s such a pity. But fortunately, I don’t think Butler’s career would suffer because of it though, at least it didn’t seem that way.

      LOVE what you said about his role as King Leo, he is indeed born to play such a character. I think the problems w/ his less-than-stellar films are the script and execution, but he’s still very watchable in those (save for Gamer which I refuse to see).

      Thanks for joining the b’day festivities, Jack! 🙂

  2. I just found out that my ‘Dear Frankie’ dvd doesn’t work. I need to see more of him, the most recent role of him was in the flicks with Jennifer Aniston and Katherine Heigl.

    But anyway, Happy Birthday, Gerard Butler and nice list Ruth 🙂 He’s very charming

    1. Oh no! What do you mean it didn’t work? Could you find it online somehow? Those roles he did w/ the two terrible actresses just didn’t show what he’s capable of.

      Anyway, thanks for your comment Andina.

      1. Lisa

        Sorry but I totally disagree. The Ugly Truth is hilarious and Gerry looks sooo gorgeous in it. As for The Bounty Hunter, it was exactly what it was supposed to be – a silly movie. And it’s worth suffering through JA to see Gerry wet and in nothing but a towel.

        1. I never thought I’d say this but the folks at TUT managed to somehow made GB unattractive… not sure how but they did. He usually made for a charming cad but in that one he’s just a cad, period. Sorry Lisa, but I really can’t bring myself to like that movie.

  3. Love your list Ruth. I love a guy who can be ruggedly handsome, bust a showtune, and doesn’t take himself too seriously which is why I love watching him in interviews. I also adored him on SNL singing “Music of the Night” while fighting during the monologue and The Beauty and Beast sketch (“I like a big ass”).

    He first caught my eye in Phantom of the Opera, although I find him the sexiest when singing “Point of No Return.” And I have my DVR set to record “Dear Frankie” because I can tell from your review that I’ll love him in it.

    1. Amen, sister! Yes, that monologue is a hoot too, he’s such a natural showman isn’t he?

      Oh yes, The Point of No Return scene is definitely scorching HOT [fan self] That part when he climbed up the staircase to meet Christine… coupled w/ the lyrics like “When will the blood begin to race… The sleeping bud burst into bloom… When will the flames at last CONSUME us?” I felt like the screen igniting right before me, ahah.

  4. I remember when I first saw him in ATILLA…. the rest was history 🙂 It was a sealed deal between me and him after that moment 🙂 Kinda like when I first saw Karl Urban in HERCULES 🙂
    Gerry Berry really liked the nightlife in Belgrade, so he should pop over again to celebrate his birthday here 🙂 Although Kaja, the Serbian singer he drooled over when he was shooting CORIOLANUS isn’t free any more, she is now with famous DJ Junior Jack

    1. Ha..ha.. he’s so yummy in Attila, isn’t he? I was flabbergasted to see it’s the same actor as in Phantom as he looked so exotic, I mean Mongolian??? I could see how the film got so many complaints that they hired a Scot to play a Mongolian guy, but man he’s so darn hunky in that role.

      Ha..ha.. don’t feel to sorry for our GB, Dezzy, I bet he’s already moved on from Kaja 😉

      1. he played a Hun not a Mongol, Flixy, not the same thing at all 🙂 But he made a jolly gorgeous Hun 🙂 Huns are the ancestors of todays Hungarians, my Northern neighbors, and it’s possible I have some of their blood in me too 🙂

  5. The fact that he played in 300 makes him cool to me.

    I’ll pretend I didn’t see P.S. I Love You, which I really did not like, one of the few movies I switched off before I finished it. Not because I think he’s bad, I didn’t like the concept of it.

    Those many faces of are interesting. I might do a full one on an upcoming one!

    1. That’s too bad you didn’t like the concept of P.S. I love you… I thought it’s an unconventional take for a rom-com. Well if you like him in 300, there’s a possibility he might reprise his role in the prequel.

      I’d love for you to do a ‘Many Faces’ treatment on him, Nostra, he certainly deserves one.

  6. Lisa

    I’ve been following Gerry’s career since POTO, and I now run a FB page called Gerard Butler International. I posted your blog on our page to celebrate his birthday. I have met Gerry many times, and he is an absolute angel to his fans. He is a million times more gorgeous in person, and has the heart to match.

    1. PrairieGirl

      Very lucky, Lisa. I would have loved to meet him as much as you. Glad you confirmed his great attitude towards his fans. Although if he’s really that much more stunning in person I don’t know if I could handle it. Get the smelling salts out, quick!

    2. Hey Lisa, do you have a link to your FB page? THANK YOU for sharing this link to your friends/readers. You are so darn lucky to have met him several times, wow. Yeah he is gorgeous in person, I’ve only met him once but I can attest to that. He’s taller than I expected too!

      1. Lisa Duncan

        I actually know a lot of fans who don’t like TUT, but it’s one of my go-to movies. It makes me laugh so hard knowing Gerry is so much the opposite of Mike Chadway. LOL Reign of Fire is awesome as well, Don. And he’s not so much a late bloomer as I think Hollywood just has no idea what to do with him. He’s a throwback to the days of Cary Grant, Paul Newman and Steve McQueen. He’s not a pretty boy like Hollywood seems so interested in lately.

        Here’s the link to my FB page. You’ll find NO gossip or intrusive photos. We do post paparazzi photos, but only from public events. We respect Gerry’s privacy and personal life. http://www.facebook.com/GerardButlerIntl

        Please come join us. 🙂

        1. Hi Lisa, amen to what you said about him being a throwback to classic actors like those you mentioned. In fact, I saw Butch Cassidy recently and I kept thinking if they were to do a remake of that, Butler would’ve been PERFECT as Butch!

          Thanks for the link, I don’t go to FB often but I’ll make an exception for this one 😀

  7. So many reason to love Gerard Butler! I’m ambiguous about him as he’s been in so many bad/forgettable movies and he hasn’t really been able to capitalize on 300 to get better “movie star” roles. I’d like to see him be in a good movie. And I’m not meaning Oscar-type film but just the type of big Hollywood tentpole like a Christopher Nolan flick or Mission: Impossible 32 or whatever…

    1. There’s still time Cas, he’s still got a long career ahead of him. I’m so with you about him starring in a Chris Nolan flick, oh man that’d be a dream come true!!

  8. Joanna

    Great birthday tribute…I only hope he gets to see it. I agree with almost everything you said; especially about his treatment of his fans. I have been fortunate to have met him a couple of times and he was amazing to me and the other folks drooling over him. I’ve only been a fan for a year or so but I am a total fan and can’t imagine ever letting go. And, Lisa, he absolutely is more gorgeous in person…how is that even possible?

    1. Lisa

      Cause photos do no justice to that man. And yes he IS amazing to his fans. In 4 years I have never left a Gerry event disappointed by him. Ever.

    2. Hi Joanna, nice to hear you’ve met the man. I reckon you’ll be a fan of his for the long haul. I feel like once you’ve bitten by the Butler bug, you can’t go back, ha..ha..

  9. Gerry'sSupernaturalGal

    Greit blog! But you forgot he bared that gorgeous butt of his in Rock N Rolla, lol.

    I hope he had a greit birthday and that all his wishes come true.

    He is a true joy to follow and he is so inspiring in everything he does, can’t wait for the day that I finally get the opportunity to meet him and thank him for being just him! I know in my heart of hearts, that day is coming and soon!

    Many Happy Returns Gerry and BIG Hugs always,

    GSG x

    1. PrairieGirl

      Oh my, how could I have missed his gorgeous behind in Rock N Rolla? I will certainly need to revisit that film… and quick!

    2. Hello GSG, ha..ha.. he’s rather proud of his flat butt, isn’t he? I love his sense of playfulness, it’s what makes him so interesting to watch on and off screen (in interviews I mean). He’s got a personality to match that good looks!

  10. Great tribute Girls!!

    I wish I could have as much of backbone to have a proper crush. Rather than a fleeting fickle exchange. LOL

    Happy birthday GB, come see this post and leave a COMMENT!!

    DO IT NOW!!

    😉

    1. Ha..ha.. I have an obsessive streak in me, matey, so when I have a crush it’s ALL ON! 😀 I’ve now been distracted by another G-man… Gregory Peck that is. It’s getting nuts as I can’t seem to stop watching his films now!!!

      Thanks for encouraging ze Butler to comment on the post. Wouldn’t that be nice, ahah!

  11. Whoa…great tribute Ruth!! I should make something like this next year to someone you know who 😉

    The Phantom is all around the list…I need see that one day.Old movie is not easy to find here. As I have said before I like him in PS I Love You and Law Abiding Citizen. I am still unable to watch 300.

    Happy birthday Gerry … hope you have many great movie years ahead of you 🙂

    1. Thanks Nov, well I did get the inspiration for this from the Cillian post I did for you 😉

      I hope you get to see Phantom soon, Nov. It’s a must for any GB fan even for non-ardent ones. Once you see it, you’ll know why I fell for him… hard 😀

  12. Ted S.

    I watched Reign of Fire again a few weeks ago and totally forgot he was in the film, I guess that’s the only film I like he starred in and he’s not even the lead actor. I do hope he gets better scripts to work with down the road because he can be a good leading. Like Castor said, maybe Nolan will cast him in his future films, I can see him as The Prisoner, a project Nolan wanted to do for years.

    1. Ha..ha.. well the whole movie is rather forgettable I thought. GB’s character was very minor so no wonder people missed him. It was fun to see him w/ Bale though, I’d LOVE to see those two act together again.

      I hadn’t heard about The Prisoner, what’s that about?? I’d love to see GB working w/ Nolan!!

      1. Ted S.

        Oh you know what, I should include The Prisoner as one of the unproduced scripts I sent you. Nolan wanted to make the film for years, even before he started working on the Batman films. It’s based on the 60s TV show and AMC Network turned it into a mini series couple of years ago, it wasn’t that good. Nolan actually left the project because there were some legal issues but I hope he comes back on board someday.

        1. Oooh please do, Ted! Please send me a revised copy of that post for next week. I think I’ve heard of that series but with Nolan and the right cast (I mean GB, ahah) oh man, that’d be one film to watch for!!

  13. Ah, Gerard what can I say to a fellow Scorpio as mine is tommorrow a Happy B-day to the guy who could have played Tom Lefroy easily as MacAvoy did. I remember his appearance on ‘An unsuitable job for a woman’ with Helen Baxendale which can be seen on Youtube. I think the one after that were Dracula 2000 not his fault the script was a bit bad but with that kind of eye candy who cares.
    B&B he was lovely and I have the soundtrack here at home I would like to see him do something else musical would be interesting. PSILY every time I watch it I can’t help but use up my entire kleenex box and the same for DF.
    I think if I met him unlike my encounter with Colin Firth I would actually faint. I always thought him and Jennifer Anniston would make a great couple. Just reading his bio he actually spent his part of his youth in Canada though it doesn’t say where.
    He is Scottish, but is of partial Irish ancestry. He has also mentioned that, because of this, his family does not have a tartan.
    Graduated from Glasgow University with a law degree
    Was at one time the lead singer for a Scottish rock band named Speed, although music eventually became his second love after acting.

    http://www.imdb.com/name/nm0124930/

    1. Hi Stella! Ooooh, I’d LOVE to see him as LeFroy, but preferably with someone like Carey Mulligan as Jane! Ha..ha.. you are so right about his Dracula as being eye candy, the script is utterly terrible but man, you couldn’t take your eyes off him!

      You’ve met Colin Firth??! I mean Mr. Darcy himself??! Do tell, I’d love to hear all the details. Send me a link if you’ve talked about this on the forum.

      I believe GB lived in Toronto for a while with his dad as he had married someone from Montreal or something? I think he talked about it on Leno once.

      Sounds like you’re quite well-versed on his life story, ha..ha.. yeah I knew about all that from my previous um, research on him 😀

      Thanks for the clip, too! Love seeing how jubilant he was in that soccer match.

    1. Thanks for reading T. I’ll always treasure that moment forever. I hope I get to meet him again one day and actually apologize for being such a gushy fangirl!!

    1. Lisa Duncan (phoenixgirl)

      I love him with the same passion and conviction, and fierce loyalty, and let me tell you that the rewards outweigh the insane feeling you get sometimes. Gerry deserves every bit of our love and devotion. He’s an absolutely amazing man.

    2. Well it’s kinda like you with the indies, Ty. I don’t think I could love a genre as much as you. I think with an actor, I at least get to experience different types of films and sometimes they’d make me watch a genre/type of film I otherwise won’t watch 😉

  14. Good article 🙂

    I still can’t get over that he was Dracula in “Dracula 2000”. I saw that movie when it came out, but wasn’t aware of who Gerard Butler was until Phantom of the Opera, and then somebody told me that he was Dracula and I had to look it up because I didn’t believe it. No better sign of an actor’s versatility than that!

    His career has come a long way since, and though I can’t really gush over him the way you ladies can (well, maybe I have thought about it) he is one of my favorite actors.

    1. Thanks Russ. Well I’m glad you realize GB’s versatility. I hate it when people criticize him just based on his two rom-coms, without having seen him in anything else. He’s also played Beowulf in Beowulf & Grendel around the same time he did Dear Frankie. I mean, if that is not versatile I don’t know what is. And he carried both roles wonderfully.

      Glad to hear he’s one of your faves!!

  15. i have to say i saw Bounty Hunter on cable a few days ago and you know, it wasn’t as bad as i thought it would be. IMO Butler was good in it, he just wasn’t given much to do. I still have the Dear Frankie DVD and intend to watch it 🙂

    1. I think TBH is a bit more watchable than The Ugly Truth, but I still don’t like either film. GB is fun surely, it’s JA that I can’t stand. Well, onward and upward, right, hopefully those two won’t star together again.

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