Hemsworth up for 'shirtless' MTV award

Every year there's debate about how to make the Academy Awards ceremony exciting.

Maybe the wrinkled lot over at the Academy should follow the lead of its younger, hipper rival, the MTV Movie Awards.

You won't find a crusty old cinematographer or sound editor anywhere near the site of Monday's MTV ceremony, the Nokia Theatre in downtown Los Angeles.

Instead you'll see a who's who of studs and starlets - Johnny Depp, Rihanna, Eminem, Cameron Diaz, Kate Upton, Jared Leto, Orlando Bloom, Megan Fox, Zac Efron and the list goes on.

And how about the award categories?

Nope, there's no short documentary here. But Aussie good-lookers - Rose Byrne, Chris Hemsworth and Margot Robbie - are up for MTV trophies.

For years doe-eye Balmain babe Byrne has been tormented by the highbrow Hollywood award ceremonies, nominated for two Golden Globes and two Emmy Awards for her TV drama Damages, but walking away with zip.

At the MTV Movie Awards Byrne is nominated in the Best Scared as S*** Performance category for her blood-curdling, larynx-shredding role in the horror film, Insidious: Chapter 2.

But there's tough competition in this year's Best Scared as S*** Performance category, with Brad Pitt (World War Z), Jessica Chastain (Mama), Vera Farmiga (The Conjuring) and Ethan Hawke (The Purge).

Hemsworth is nominated in the Best Shirtless Performance category for flexing his abs in Thor: The Dark World.

The competition is just as buffed, with Hemsworth's stripped-down rivals Jennifer Aniston for We're the Millers, Leonardo DiCaprio (The Wolf of Wall Street), Zac Efron (That Awkward Moment) and Sam Claflin (The Hunger Games: Catching Fire).

But, that's not all.

Hemsworth could score a double as he's also up for the Best Hero gong for Thor, competing against Henry Cavill (Man of Steel), Robert Downey Jr (Iron Man 3), Martin Freeman (The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug) and Channing Tatum (White House Down).

"If you are an actor you'd want to win a Scared As S*** Award or Best Shirtless award ahead of an Oscar, wouldn't you?" 2104 MTV Movie Awards executive producer Jesse Ignjatovic asked AAP during a tour of the Nokia stage on Thursday.

Former Neighbours vixen Robbie could feel snubbed for missing out on a nomination for the Shirtless category for her Wolf of Wall Street role, but she received a nod for Breakthrough Performance.

Her rivals are Liam James (The Way Way Back), Michael B Jordan (Fruitvale Station) and Will Poulter (We're the Millers).

The ceremony airs on MTV on Monday at 12.30pm NZT.