Hugh Jackman and Deborra-lee FurnessGet to know the woman who tamed 'Wolverine' ...

Hugh Jackman is PEOPLE magazine's reigning Sexiest Man Alive, stars in what is likely to be one of the summer's biggest blockbusters and, let's face it, could basically have any woman he wants.

But the Aussie actor only has eyes for one and has been off the market for years -- ever since his first on-screen gig, in fact.

What kind of woman does it take to tame the mighty 'Wolverine'? An older one, it turns out. Her name is Deborra-lee Furness, and she's 13 years Jackman's senior. She's also his wife, his self-professed "leading lady," the mother of his two adopted children and the envy of hordes of women worldwide.

Hugh Jackman and Deborra-lee FurnessHugh Jackman is PEOPLE magazine's reigning Sexiest Man Alive, stars in what is likely to be one of the summer's biggest blockbusters and, let's face it, could basically have any woman he wants.

But the Aussie actor only has eyes for one and has been off the market for years -- ever since his first on-screen gig, in fact.

What kind of woman does it take to tame the mighty 'Wolverine'? An older one, it turns out. Her name is Deborra-lee Furness, and she's 13 years Jackman's senior. She's also his wife, his self-professed "leading lady," the mother of his two adopted children and the envy of hordes of women worldwide. -- By Tom DiChiara

Jackman and Furness first met in 1995, when acting neophyte Hugh landed his first starring role opposite already experienced actress Deborra-lee on the Australian prison drama series 'Correlli.' Of their meeting, Jackman recently told PEOPLE: "In my early 20s, I didn't have a regular girlfriend. I was single and really happy about it. And then when I was 26, I met Deb on 'Correlli.' She was my leading lady. It was just undeniable. I started planning to propose to her at about three months."

Hugh Jackmans Hottest Moments

    It's not every actor who can boast a resume as varied as Hugh Jackman's. The 40-year-old Aussie has embodied one of the most iconic superheroes ever to hit the big screen, won a Tony for playing a gay man, snagged an Emmy for hosting the Tonys (got that?) and earned raves for emceeing this year's Oscars. And, as if that's not enough, he's PEOPLE magazine's reigning Sexiest Man Alive and has biceps larger than the trunks of many oak trees.

    As Jackman slashes his way into theaters with his fourth turn as the titular cigar-chomping, metal-clawed, tissue-regenerating badass in 'X-Men Origins: Wolverine,' Moviefone looks back on Hugh's greatest (and -- yes, ladies -- sexiest) moments -- from his beginnings on Australian TV to his breakout performance in 'X-Men' and beyond. -- By Tom DiChiara

    20th Century Fox

    Conjugal Visit

    After four years of majoring in journalism at the University of Technology Sydney, Jackman had a senior-year epiphany and decided that his true calling lay with acting. He landed his first gig in 1995, starring opposite Deborra-lee Furness in the Australian TV prison drama 'Corelli.' The following year, Jackman and Furness, who is 13 years his senior, were wed -- and remain so today. He was cougar bait before cougar baitin' was cool (take that, Ashton).

    Jason Kempinl, WireImage

    'Oklahoma!' Dreamin'

    In 1998, Hugh's star began to rise with his headlining role in the London revival of the stage musical 'Oklahoma!' The role established Jackman as a leading man with both sex appeal -- his co-star Maureen Lipman told PEOPLE that "women, men, children and dogs completely went to pieces when Hugh took his shirt off" -- and serious acting skills. In 1999, Jackman earned an Olivier nomination, the U.K. version of a Tony, for his performance.

    Bauer-Griffin

    'X' Marks the Spot

    When an extended shooting schedule on 'Mission Impossible II' forced Dougray Scott to bail on playing Wolverine in 2000's superhero ensemble 'X-Men,' Jackman stepped in to portray the emotionally tortured, metal-clawed badass. And what a fortuitous turn of events it was. The film was met with rave reviews and a $54.6 million opening weekend and ultimately grossed $157 mil domestically, catapulting fan favorite Jackman to superstardom in the process.

    ZUMA Press

    Romance Is Golden

    The following year, Jackman tested his romantic comedy appeal with two films: 'Someone Like You,' co-starring Ashley Judd, and the time-travel romance 'Kate & Leopold,' in which he played a 19th-century duke who falls for modern-day New Yorker Meg Ryan. Though neither flick scored huge box office numbers, Hugh did earn his first -- and, to date, only -- Golden Globe nomination for 'Leopold.'

    Miramax Films

    A Most 'X'-cellent Sequel

    After a year without a theatrical release, Jackman tore back onto the big screen with a vengeance in 2003, reprising his role as Wolverine in the 'X-Men' sequel 'X2: X-Men United.' The film, which is widely considered the best in the 'X-Men' franchise, decimated expectations, raking in $85.6 mil in its opening weekend on its way to a $215 million cumulative gross.

    20th Century Fox

    The Tony-Winning 'Boy From Oz'

    Shortly thereafter, Jackman returned to the stage to showcase his versatility, playing the flamboyantly gay Peter Allen in the Broadway musical 'The Boy From Oz.' While critics blasted the play, audiences and reviewers alike were so enamored of Jackman's performance that he won the 2004 Tony Award for Best Lead Actor in a Musical. Samba-riffic.

    Mark Barker, AP

    'Van Helsing' Slays

    Playing the titular vampire hunter in 2004's 'Van Helsing' brought Jackman a $51.8 million opening, at the time the third largest of his career and his best headlining a film on his own. Though reviews were less than favorable (we're trying to be kind), the movie earned a not-too-shabby $120 mil and proved Jackman didn't need muttonchops, adamantium claws and a slew of mutant pals to be a bankable action star.

    Universal

    An Emmy for the Tonys

    Having already proved his talents as a singer, dancer and actor, Jackman next decided to conquer the world of hosting. In 2003, 2004 and 2005, Jackman was a runaway crowd pleaser as the singing, dancing, punchline-nailing emcee of theater's Tony Awards. His second and third go-rounds as host earned him Emmy nominations for Outstanding Individual Performance in a Music or Variety Show, and -- wouldn't you know it? -- he won in 2005.

    Kathy Willens, AP

    'X-Men' Makes a
    Giant Stand


    Besting its two predecessors, 'X-Men: The Last Stand' opened to a whopping $122.9 million over Memorial Day weekend in 2006 and went on to a $234 million overall haul. To this day, it is the top-grossing flick in Jackman's oeuvre. (No pressure, 'Wolverine.')

    20th Century Fox



Although Jackman was smitten immediately, it wasn't all clear sailing at the start. Their first date was nearly broken when rock legend Mick Jagger invited Furness out for a night on the town. But Deborra got on her cell phone and defiantly told her friend, who was in a limo with Jagger, "You tell Mick I'm having dinner with Hugh Jackman." And that, as they say, was that. Jackman and Furness were married the following year, and remain happily so to this day.

And as far as Furness's career goes, she stepped away from acting after 2000 to focus on raising the couple's two adpotive children, Oscar, 8, and Ava, 3. But she's recently gotten back in the swing with 2006's 'Jindabyne,' 2008's 'Sleepwalking' and the upcoming drama 'Blessed.' In her free time, she's just busy being happy with Hugh.

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    Age Difference: 35 years

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