This image was lost some time after publication.

Superproducer Jerry Bruckheimer knows a movie star when he sees one: he's at ease in front of the camera, has an elusive magnetism, and, most importantly of all, has a set of teeth so huge, ivory, and gleaming that they'd make Mr. Ed faint dead away from jealousy. As for the first two qualities, well, you're either born with them or you're selling used Toyotas in Cerritos. But the third? Yeah, Uncle Jerry can help you out with that:

COULD mega-producer Jerry Bruckheimer be behind the rash of huge white horse-teeth Hollywood's male stars are sporting these days? When Bruckheimer wants to work with a movie hunk, he insists they "look like a star," one insider giggled, "so they all have to go out and get what we call 'Chompers' - caps on their teeth. They all get their teeth whittled down and these big white gleaming caps on." Which would explain the blindingly white smiles of Ben Affleck ("Pearl Harbor"), Nicolas Cage ("National Treasure") and Clive Owen ("King Arthur"). A rep for Bruckheimer declined comment.

Bruckheimer's dental formula for success isn't a one-size-fits-all solution. Due to the diminished proportions of the small screen, actors on The Bruck's wildly successful television dramas (CSIs, Cold Case, etc) have their teeth yanked out and replaced by Chiclet-sized implants, lest their perfect smiles overwhelm the home viewer.

UPDATE: After the jump, a transcription from the Armageddon DVD commentary, in which director Michael Bay explains Affleck's $20,000 smile, courtesy of the Criterion Contraption blog:

I had him work out. We paid for a set of twenty thousand dollars of pearly white teeth—Ben's gonna hate that story—uh, I always like low shots that kinda come right under your chin, just make you a little bit heroic, and he kinda had these baby teeth. So, uh, I told Jerry Bruckheimer, I said, "God, he's got these baby teeth, Jerry, I don't know what to do." Jerry used a very famous star in a... plane movie that he replaced teeth with so, uh, he says, "We did it to him, why not do it to Ben?" So my dentist had Ben sitting in a dentist's chair for a week, eight hours a day.