Who says history buffs don't enjoy a few buff men in their history? As much as our modern day sensibilities might not always align with the past, countless big-budget productions cast attractive actors in leading roles all the time, even if said role might be based on a not-so-appealing historical figure. It goes without saying that not every casting decision makes sense; sometimes they sacrifice a little accuracy in favor of an attractive male lead. But moviegoers tend to be more eager to learn about important moments in history when good-looking actors portray influential figures from the past. Sweeping historical events just seem more palatable when modern day hotties act them out.
This sort of casting may seem superficial, but there's nothing wrong with making history easy on the eyes.