Owen Wilson is a blonde, floppy-haired, crooked nosed, lovable, surfer-dude. He’s also a famous actor, screenwriter, and all around cool guy. He’s got a quirky sense of humor and isn’t afraid of his sensitive side. Wilson is best known for his roles in Wedding Crashers and Zoolander, but he’s a perennial Hollywood favorite. Here are 42 facts that make Owen Wilson so hot right now.
42. Frat Pack
Wilson is a member of the Frat Pack. Think of it like a raunchy all-male version of the Brat Pack.The club consists of Ben Stiller, Jack Black, Luke Wilson, Will Ferrell, and Vince Vaughn, and it’s named for the type of humor typically on display in their films; that is, a little frat boy-esque.
Owen Wilson and Ben Stiller have worked together on no less than 12 films—Night at the Museum and its sequels, Meet the Parents and its sequels, Starsky and Hutch, the two Zoolander movies, The Royal Tenenbaums, The Cable Guy, and Permanent Midnight. I find this particularly impressive given how irritating all of Stiller’s characters are. Give this man a medal.
40. Reckless Roomies
Wilson and Wes Anderson met while in school at the University of Texas. There a burgeoning friendship turned two strangers into roommates in an Austin apartment complex. That’s when they first began writing the script for Bottle Rocket. They also managed to get in all sorts of trouble with their landlord, staging a break-in and skipping out on their rent in the middle of the night. I can’t say this surprises me given the movie they were writing was about a couple of friends going on a crime spree. Talk about life influencing art. Even worse, their landlord was wise to the scheme and tried to hold their things hostage, resulting in a tug of war altercation.
39. Writing’s in the Heart
Though Wilson is best known as an actor, he actually never wanted to act and says that writing is his true passion. He cowrote three movies with his friend Wes Anderson—Bottle Rocket, Rushmore, and The Royal Tenenbaums.
38. Tarantino Would Hate Him
Wilson has a bit of a loose approach when it comes to his lines. This is especially true in Wedding Crashers. He came up with the “I think we only use 10 per cent of our hearts” line, and he and costar Vince Vaughn also improvised the classic “lock it up” banter featured in the film.
37. His Nose Is Iconic
When you think of Owen Wilson, his blonde hair and lackadaisical attitude might come to mind, but his most defining feature is definitely his crooked nose. He broke his nose twice, once playing football and another time in a high school fight. I always thought he was a lover, not a fighter.
Wilson has a certain way with words, or one word in particular—”wow.” The way Wilson says the word “wow” is truly something to behold, something to cherish. It’s something he has become known for, he speaks it softly, whispers it, rarely shouting the word he loves so much. Somehow he has been able to say it in nearly every film he’s been in. To that I say—wow.
35. He Be Having Sons
Wilson is the father of two sons from two different women. His ex-girlfriend Federal Air Marshal Jade Duell gave birth to Robert Ford Wilson in January 2011. And in January 2014, his personal trainer Caroline Lindqvist gave birth to Finn Lindqvist Wilson.
34. Luck or Talent?
Wilson’s introduction into the world of movies was the film Bottle Rocket. Not only was this a movie he starred in opposite his brother Luke, but he also cowrote it. Pretty impressive for a guy who got expelled in 10th grade.
33. Hansel (so hot right now)
The movie Zoolander is a personal favorite of mine. The chemistry between Wilson and his pal Ben Stiller is almost tangible on screen. I mean they were nominated for an MTV Movie Award for Best On-Screen Team for Pete’s sake. So it’s not exactly a surprise to learn that when Stiller was writing the movie, the role of Hansel was only ever going to be Wilson’s. Stiller wrote the character for him and refused to consider anyone else.
32. Trigger Happy
Though a non-violent man, Wilson was a bit of a rascal in his youth. When we was a kid, Owen shot his brother Andrew in the hand with a BB gun. Years later, he was able to exploit his brother’s injury for his work, using him in a scene for The Royal Tenenbaums. That’s Andrew’s hand you see when Ben Stiller’s character is showing off the BB lodged between his knuckles.
31. Sheryl’s Muse
Wilson has dated quite a few famous ladies in his time, but only one has chronicled that relationship in song. Wilson and Sheryl Crow dated for two years, Crow’s fourth album C’mon C’mon is dedicated to Wilson and the song “Safe and Sound” is said to be about the demise of their relationship. I can barely get my exes to acknowledge we even had a relationship, and he’s out here getting Sheryl Crow to write a song about him. Boy’s got moves.
30. Meat Tray
Wilson was the 1001st guest on the Australian talk show Rove Live. To celebrate the occasion, he was given a meat tray. Isla Fisher, who was the 1000th guest and walked out just before him, was given a crown, sash, and bouquet. I think it’s obvious who got the better deal.
29. Too Into It
During a scene in the film The Haunting, which is based on the novel by Shirley Jackson The Haunting of Hill House, Wilson got a little too into one of the scenes and injured himself. In the scene where his character attacks a portrait of Hugh Crane with a candlestick, he ended up cutting his chin badly enough that he needed stitches. I guess he must have been pretty angry at that portrait.
28. Wig Snatched
Wilson’s beautiful blond locks are very much a part of who he is. However, in 2001 he had to keep those locks buzzed whilst filming for Behind Enemy Lines. Consequently when he also began shooting for Zoolander that year, it meant he had to wear a wig for his iconic portrayal of Hansel (so hot right now). Suffice to say my own wig was snatched when I discovered the truth.
27. When’s the Wilsonaissance?
When Matthew McConaughey turned down the role of Chris Burnett in Behind Enemy Lines, Owen Wilson was cast instead. This wouldn’t be the only time they traded roles. Later in 2008, after Wilson was forced to drop out of Tropic Thunder, he was replaced with McConaughey. I like to believe they’re playing their own chess match that we don’t understand, or maybe its just how Hollywood works.
26. He’s Committed to His Craft
In a more dramatic turn, Wilson starred as Lieutenant Chris Burnett, a Navy navigator who gets shot down in enemy territory in Behind Enemy Lines. In order to prepare for the role, Wilson underwent actual naval survival training. So that’s how he was able to get the fear just right.
25. He’s Method, Man
Wilson isn’t particularly known for his acting techniques. But playing a motorcycle accident victim in Darjeeling Limited required a little creativity to get the limp just right. So he put a lime in his shoe. Seriously. Daniel Day Lewis might want to watch out, there’s a new acting king in town.
24. Ravishing Rachel
Wilson and Rachel McAdams have played an onscreen couple twice. In Wedding Crashers when he’s attempting to woo her away from Bradley Cooper’s dirtbag character and as a husband and wife in Midnight in Paris.
23. Co-Writers No More
Wilson and Wes Anderson were regular writing partners in their early careers, co-writing multiple films together. But when it came time to write The Life Aquatic with Steve Zissou, Anderson was disappointed to find Wilson too busy with other projects to help out. You can still find him acting in the film, but the last movie they wrote together was The Royal Tenenbaums.
22. Hello Brother
Owen and Luke Wilson have been acting together since their first film Bottle Rocket, but the first time they got to play actual brothers on screen was in Around the World in 80 Days. A true classic, they play a small part as the Wright brothers.
21. A Family That Acts Together …
Owen isn’t the only Wilson who likes to be in front of the camera. His older brother Andrew and younger brother Luke are both actors. Andrew is, to me anyway, best recognizable as the dude in Whip It and can often be found in whatever films his brothers are starring in. Luke, of course, is Reese Witherspoon’s love interest in Legally Blonde, but is probably best known for Old School and his poignant suicide attempt in The Royal Tenenbaums.
20. A Voice Like Butter
Wilson is not only a gifted comedic actor and screenwriter, he’s also a talented voice actor. Wilson has lent his voice to the Cars franchise as Lightning McQueen, Fantastic Mr. Fox and, what I found rather surprising, an episode of King of the Hill. I’m still waiting for the day he’s available as a GPS voice option, though. Guide me home with your sweet dulcet tones, Owen.
19. There’s Always the Marines
Ever the pragmatist, Wilson’s backup plan if Bottle Rocket wasn’t successful was to join the Marine Corps. And though it wasn’t a commercial success, it was on Martin Scorsese’s list of the best films of the 1990s, which is really more impressive if you think about it.
18. Something in the Water
Wilson had his first child in 2011, coinciding with the release of his film Hall Pass. But he wasn’t the only member of the cast who welcomed their first kid into the world that year. He, Jenna Fischer, Christina Applegate, and Alyssa Milano all became first-time parents together the year it was released. Not sure what was offered at that craft service table, but keep it away from me.
17. Real Star Power
Wilson’s character in Night at the Museum was originally just meant to be a cameo. His character Jedediah Smith tested so well with audiences that his part was expanded. Wilson then reprised his role for the film’s two sequels—Night at the Museum: Battle of the Smithsonian and Night at the Museum: Secret of the Tomb.
16. Going in Blind
One would think landing a lead role in a multi-million dollar film would require at least meeting and speaking to the director once. However, that was not the case with Wilson’s role in Midnight in Paris. He didn’t meet or speak with Woody Allen until he landed in France to begin filming. Talk about going in blind.
15. Oscar Worthy
When Woody Allen had his budget for Midnight in Paris confirmed, he began exploring casting options. When he was unable to get the actors he wanted (they were working on other projects at the time) Owen Wilson’s name was tossed around for the lead. Allen actually went back and rewrote the character of Gil so that it would better suit Wilson.
14. Cereal Bros
Brothers Owen and Luke Wilson have collaborated on many films, but Drunk History was their first foray into television. Fittingly, they played brothers John Harvey Kellogg (Owen) and Will Keith Kellogg (Luke) who notably created the cereal Corn Flakes.
13. Sissy That Walk
During Paris Fashion Week in 2015, Wilson and Stiller took to the runway to announce Zoolander 2. They shocked the crowd at the Valentino Runway when they came out as their characters, Derek Zoolander and Hansel. The film would be released the next year.
12. Weekend Update
For Larry David’s debut hosting Saturday Night Live, Wilson and Ben Stiller got dressed as their classic Zoolander characters for a skit on Weekend Update to promote Zoolander 2. (Hansel’s still so hot right now.) They playfully lampooned politicians’ fashion choices during the 2016 primaries. It was a simpler time back then.
In a blink-and-you’ll-miss-it role, Wilson made a small appearance in the episode “Investigative Journalism” of Community. He played another study group’s leader in an episode that had Jack Black try to infiltrate Jeff and the gang.
10. Owen’s Favorite Things
Wilson’s favorite movies are Scarface and Punch Drunk Love. A huge fan of the water and being active, he enjoys body surfing and swimming. He also likes to occasionally channel his inner Forrest Gump with a game of table tennis.
9. Go Longhorns!
Wilson was born and raised in Dallas, Texas. Like a true Texan, he can often be spotted supporting his teams at sporting events, cheering on his hometown Cowboys, Mavericks, and Rangers.
8. Heat Vision and Jack
Picture this: a science fiction-comedy TV show titled Heat Vision and Jack created by Dan Harmon, starring Jack Black and Owen Wilson, and directed by Ben Stiller. It would have been an instant classic. Unfortunately, Fox failed to pick it up in 1999, thus destroying dreams I didn’t even know I had. Here’s hoping one day we’ll see Jack Black as a radiation-laden former astronaut and Owen Wilson as his talking motorcycle.
7. Life’s Funny That Way
The male lead in She’s Funny That Way was specifically written for John Ritter, and after his death the director/writer Peter Bogdanovich didn’t even want to make the movie. That all changed when Wes Anderson introduced him to Owen Wilson. Bogdanovich was so enamored by Wilson that he decided to resurrect the script, booking him for the lead.
6. Dark Day
In 2007, Luke Wilson found his brother Owen covered in blood and disoriented. He called 911 and was able to get Owen help in time to save his life. It was later confirmed that this was a suicide attempt; Owen had taken a bunch of pills and slit his wrist. He didn’t say much on the subject, only releasing this statement: “I respectfully ask that the media allow me to receive care and heal in private during this difficult time.” To this day Wilson likes to keep silent about his private life, often refusing to answer personal questions.
5. That’s Not My Butt
Wilson doesn’t do a lot of nude scenes in his movies, but for You, Me and Dupree, it was required. Wilson was willing, but when it came to the final product, things didn’t turn out the way he expected, “The director made that decision not to use my butt … I don’t know how to interpret that.” You and me both, man.
4. You, Me, and Kate
Wilson and Kate Hudson met on the set of You, Me and Dupree; they began dating, but broke up in 2007 after about a year. However, the break didn’t last long, as they got back together in 2008 with plans to marry. Their on-and-off relationship was permanently turned off in 2009, with those wedding plans never coming to fruition. Many have noted that their 2007 breakup coincides with Wilson’s attempt on his life.
3. The Black Dog
Like many of us, Wilson has battled with his mental health. He was diagnosed and treated for depression after his suicide attempt in 2007. There was much speculation at the time as to what caused his attempt, and Wilson has kept pretty quiet about it, only saying that he had been suffering from depression for months prior.
2. Bathing With Jackie
Wilson and Jackie Chan had a real bonding session during a scene in Shanghai Noon. In the film they play an unlikely duo who teams up. Wilson reminisced about their time together: “Being in a bathtub with Jackie Chan, I don’t know, it has a way of bonding you I’ll tell you that. I don’t know if there are some weird undertones. It was like we had met in Los Angeles and we didn’t have that much to say to each other but, after that bathtub scene, we were great friends. What it really was was that when we’d play off each other, it really was fun. We really did become friends.” Next time you want to form a deeper bond with an acquaintance, just ask them to get in the tub with you.
Wilson has a clover tattoo on his left shoulder with the word “luck” written beneath it. I know what you’re asking yourself: is this lame? The answer is yes, of course it is. You know who else has a clover tattoo? My 57-year-old mother.