Earlier this week, George Clooney shared the cover of Vanity Fair with Matt Damon and Daniel Craig - click here for a refresher. Now he’s collaborating with Viola Davis in the new issue of Entertainment Weekly. See now this, this is a campaign strategy that’s so much more palatable than Stacy Keibler/Elisabetta Canalis/Sarah Larson/substitute leggy medium pretty escort.

But he is WORKING it, non?

Was George starting to feel the heat from Jean Dujardin and Brad Pitt?

Listen to how he’s talking:

“There’s this strange thing that’s happened over the last 25 or 30 years where there’s this decision being made that women aren’t able to carry the box office. Now, Bridesmaids has proved that to be bulls—, and The Help has proven it to be bulls—. But it’s much harder to get a film with a woman lead made. When a man hits 40 is when roles just begin to happen. And for women it doesn’t happen. I find that to be a very concerning issue.”

Is that your move? To court the women’s vote within the Academy? Because you say these things and then you show up with Stacy Keibler...

So what ARE Clooney’s chances? I think he’s still in the lead right now. But he’s hustling this hard for a reason. Someone must be telling him that there are others who are surging. You know what? It’s actually a race this year (so far). Across several categories. I’m excited.

PS. Sarah from Cinesnark went balls out, and boldly, when she predicted Gary Oldman for Best Actor waaaay back on December 1. I don’t have her courage. On Monday then. Mine will come on Monday.

Click here for more campaigning from George Clooney at EW.com.