In one corner, at 5'7 1/2 and 27 years of age, she's Vegan, she's Irish American, she was #1 on Maxim's top 100 list in 2009 - Ms. Olivia Wilde!
In the other corner, standing at a whopping 6 feet, the 32 year old former model who spots nine tattoos, but is afraid of owls, and was named one of People's Sexiest Men Alive in the year 2000 - Mr Tyrese Gibson!
For whom will Summer 2011 be better? Let's take a closer look.
The still somewhat cult status Olivia Wilde is attempting to make a jump to full blown movie star this year, with two extremely high profile films coming out later in the summer (plus two more in the fall). The first is the highly anticipated Cowboys & Aliens, directed by Jon Favreau and starring Daniel Craig and Harrison Ford alongside Wilde. It's science fiction, it's a western, it's filled with legitimate movie stars and character actors alike and is directed by the man who put Iron Man on the cinematic map. If this is the hit we are all hoping it will be, both critically and financially, and if Wilde gives as rockin' a performance as I suspect she will from the aired-during-Ameican-Idol-trailer-that-gave-too-much-away, she will zoom even higher up on the "It" list than she is now.
One week later, Wilde will be seen in The Change Up, a speculative fiction comedy from the folks that were responsible for The Hangover and Wedding Crashers, starring Jason Bateman and Ryan Reynolds. If the trailer and talent line up is any indication, the film will be dirty and hilarious and all of the awesome I want it to be. Wilde plays a co-worker of Bateman, whom he gets to romance while in the body of Reynolds, undoubtedly showing off a completely different side to her than we will get to see in Cowboys & Aliens. Epic.
Tyrese Gibson, while perhaps not tackling anything particularly new or challenging this summer, has thrown down the gauntlet in terms of massive scale action films. Both of his summer offerings are sequels to huge films that will no question surpass all their previous installments in size and box office dollars. Fast Five already has. "The Franchise That Boys Built," as I like to call the Fast and the Furious oeuvre, has apparently hit its peak with number five, pulling in nice reviews as well as the most money ever. Seriously. Over 80 million opening weekend? And none of my friends were even a part of that audience? What is this WORLD? He plays some character named Roman that was friends with Paul Walker's character and I'm sure gets involved with car stealing hijinks or whatever happens in these movies. Whatever he does is most likely badass.
In July, we'll see Gibson reprise the role of Sgt. Epps in Transformers: Dark of the Moon. The Transformers series is just like the Fast and the Furious films, except with robots and dumb and the worst. But the third time out features Francis McDormand, Hugo Weaving, space and what looks like Shia LeBeouf wearing eyeliner, so it might not be as sucktastic as the last one. But any way you slice it, chances are Gibson will still be upstaged by the giant robots taking over Earth, no?
So who will have the better summer? It depends on who you ask. For me, both Fast Five and Dark of the Moon are "Since boyfriend saw ____ with me, I'll guess I'll see one of those with him" films. I'd be happy to ignore them, but no one will let me. Whereas I am ecstatic for both Cowboys & Aliens and The Change Up. As far as I'm concerned, Wilde easily has the upper hand.
But because "better" can mean many different things, I'll concede this - if it's coming down to money, Tyrese Gibson will hands down have the superior summer. Fast Five already funded its next fourteen movies with its opening weekend numbers and Dark of the Moon will make even more than that because robots > cars. But if it comes down to quality, Olivia Wilde has it all sewn up. And because additionally, and perhaps most importantly, girls rule and boys drool.