The Korn Group

  • Hugh Jackman personifies the ideal modern Australian male

    • May 17, 2013
    • Neer Korn

    As part of our latest study The Modern Male we asked Australian men who best personifies the ideal man and it is Hugh Jackman’s name that was mentioned most often. Jackman possesses the qualities they admire most – he ticks a lot of boxes!

    Australians celebrate the achievements of others. They are proud of individuals who are committed, hard-working and succeed in their chosen field.  They resent being depicted as overall lazy and apathetic, an image they believe is put forward all too often. They recognise that Jackman has achieved much and reached the pinnacle of his field. He is a renowned international actor with a string of popular roles behind him. He’s very good at what he does and has become famous through his craft, unlike the multitudes we feel have become famous despite lacking talent.

    Australian men also respect his versatility. He is able to extend himself, experiment with his skills and play very diverse roles. While they may not have enjoyed each and every one of these, they respect him for doing so. They like hearing of people reinventing themselves and turning their passion or interest into practice.

    More importantly, it appears to Australian men that Jackman remains down-to-earth and unaffected by his fame. He appears free of the trappings and ego all too often associated with success. When famous people begin to believe in their own hype and act in a diva like manner their behaviour is regarded as distinctly unAustralian (that’s when the tall poppy syndrome comes into play, bringing those individuals down a notch or two).

    Having humble beginnings or overcoming adversity are qualities Australian men admire. Succeeding despite difficult and challenging barriers and displaying resilience are common to many of their icons. Similarly they admire a career path marked by failure, persistence and a “never give up” attitude.

    They also respect that Jackman is educated with a university degree. For all of their much-publicised larrikin sprit Australian men want to be recognised for their smarts. When they speak of Adam Hill, for example, it’s his intelligent humour they speak of.

    Jackman is also scandal free. There is no sleaze associated with him. He is regarded as believable, genuine and trustworthy. They assume that he will not disappoint public expectations. There have been so many disappointments – think Lance Armstrong – that trust is a rare commodity, yet Jackman naturally draws it from the public.

    He is not a publicity hound and maintains his private life with decorum.

    There are two other qualities that set Jackman apart.

    The first is his devotion as a husband. He is deeply committed to his wife despite the endless opportunities his good looks and star-status are assumed to accord him. Jackman scores bonus points for being unafraid to share his feeling for his wife in public. “The last award he won, he got up in front of the entire world and just basically lavished his wife with praise and love and admiration,” is how one man expressed it, “And I mean that’s pretty secure.”

    The second quality is that Jackman appears to be a genuinely nice guy. The measure being that if you were to run into him somewhere he would happily stop for a chat. “You just expect him to be one of the nicest guys you’ve ever met I reckon.  I can’t imagine him saying a bad word about anyone,” is how one man put it.

    There is only avenue left for Jackman if he wished for even greater accolades. He could become synonymous with his generosity or charity work, as Glenn McGrath is. Better still he could bow out of acting and become a professional athlete and win gold at the next Olympics.

    The icons we choose to admire say much about our own character and aspirations. Brands seeking spokespeople should look for as many of these qualities as possible. Excelling in a particular field is simply not enough.  It is gratifying that, in the case of Australian men, among the qualities they seek a priority is being nice.



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