Patrick Dempsey

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia - View original article

Patrick Dempsey
Patrick Dempsey 2011.jpg
Patrick Dempsey at the 2011 24 Hours of Le Mans
BornPatrick Galen Dempsey
(1966-01-13) January 13, 1966 (age 48)
Lewiston, Maine, U.S.
ResidenceMalibu, California, U.S.
OccupationActor, race car driver
Years active1985–present

Rocky Parker
(m. 1987–94)

Jill Fink (m. 1999)
Jump to: navigation, search
Patrick Dempsey
Patrick Dempsey 2011.jpg
Patrick Dempsey at the 2011 24 Hours of Le Mans
BornPatrick Galen Dempsey
(1966-01-13) January 13, 1966 (age 48)
Lewiston, Maine, U.S.
ResidenceMalibu, California, U.S.
OccupationActor, race car driver
Years active1985–present

Rocky Parker
(m. 1987–94)

Jill Fink (m. 1999)

Patrick Galen Dempsey (born January 13, 1966) is an American actor and race car driver, best known for his role as neurosurgeon Dr. Derek Shepherd ("McDreamy") on the ABC medical drama Grey's Anatomy. Prior to Grey's Anatomy he made several television appearances and was nominated for an Emmy Award. He has also appeared in several films, including Sweet Home Alabama, Made of Honor, Valentine's Day, Enchanted, With Honors, Flypaper, Freedom Writers, and Transformers: Dark of the Moon.

Dempsey, who maintains an exclusive sports and vintage car collection, also enjoys auto racing in his spare time. He has competed in prestigious pro-am events such as the 24 Hours of Le Mans, Rolex 24 at Daytona sports car race, and Tecate SCORE Baja 1000 off-road race. Prior to the 2013 24 Hours of Le Mans, Dempsey declared that he would "walk away" from acting if he could and dedicate himself full-time to motorsports.[1]

Early life[edit]

Dempsey was born in Lewiston, Maine, and grew up in Buckfield, Maine. His mother, Amanda (née Caisson),[2] was a school secretary, and his father, William, was an insurance salesman.[3][4][5] He attended Buckfield High School and St. Dominic Regional High School.[6] He was an adept juggler, tying for second in a national juggling competition.[7] He was also an accomplished skier and while in high school won the Maine state slalom championship.

As a child, Dempsey attended Camp Wekeela located in Hartford, Maine.

Dempsey was diagnosed with dyslexia at age twelve. He told Barbara Walters on her 2008 Oscar special that he thinks dyslexia made him what he is today. "It's given me a perspective of—you have to keep working," Dempsey told Walters. "I have never given up."[8]

Acting career[edit]

Early career[edit]

Dempsey was discovered by an invitation to audition for a role in the stage production of Torch Song Trilogy. His audition was successful, and he spent the following four months touring with the company in Philadelphia. He followed this with another tour, Brighton Beach Memoirs, in the lead role, which was directed by Gene Saks. Dempsey has also made notable appearances in the stage productions of On Golden Pond, with the Maine Acting Company, and as Timmy (the Martin Sheen role) in a 1990 Off-Broadway revival of The Subject Was Roses co-starring with John Mahoney and Dana Ivey at the Roundabout Theatre in New York

Dempsey's first major feature film role was at age 21 with Beverly D'Angelo in the movie In The Mood, the true World War II story about Ellsworth Wisecarver whose relationships with older married women created a national uproar. This was followed by the teen comedy Can't Buy Me Love in 1987 with actress Amanda Peterson and Some Girls with Jennifer Connelly in 1988. This film was a flop. In 1989, Dempsey had the lead role in the films Loverboy with actress Kirstie Alley and Happy Together with actress Helen Slater.

1990s and 2000s[edit]

Dempsey made a number of featured appearances in television in the 1990s; he was cast several times in pilots that were not picked up for a full season, including lead roles in the TV versions of the films The Player and About A Boy. However he received good reviews[9] as he portrayed real-life mob boss, Meyer Lansky in 1991, when Mobsters was put on the screen. His first major television role was a recurring role as Will's closeted sportscaster boyfriend on Will & Grace. He went on to play the role of Aaron Brooks, Lily & Judy's psychologically unbalanced brother, on Once & Again. Dempsey received an Emmy[10] nomination in 2001 as Outstanding Guest Actor in a Drama Series for the role of Aaron. In 1993, he played a young John F. Kennedy in the 2-part TV mini-series JFK: Reckless Youth. In 2000, he also had a role as Detective Kincaid in Scream 3.

Dempsey had a high-profile role as the fiancé of Reese Witherspoon's character in Sweet Home Alabama. In 2004, he co-starred in the highly acclaimed HBO production Iron Jawed Angels, opposite Hilary Swank and Anjelica Huston. He also appeared as special guest star in The Practice for its 3-episode finale season (8x13-8x15), as a married man who murdered his lover.

In 2007, Dempsey starred in the Disney film Enchanted, and the Paramount Pictures film Freedom Writers where he reunited with his Iron Jawed Angels co-star Hilary Swank. He also voiced the character Kenai in Brother Bear 2. Dempsey's most recent roles include the 2008 film Made of Honor as Tom and the 2010s romantic comedy Valentine's Day; the latter film, directed by Garry Marshall, follows five interconnecting stories about Los Angelinos anticipating (or in some cases dreading) the holiday of love.[11]

Universal Pictures acquired the rights to the prize-winning novel The Art of Racing in the Rain in July 2009, for Dempsey to star in.[12] The project has not been able to find a director.[13] Dempsey starred as Dylan Gould in the 2011 movie Transformers: Dark of the Moon.[14][15]

On November 1, 2012, reported that Dempsey is set to star in the romantic comedy Wonderful Tonight playing opposite Amanda Seyfried.[16]

Grey's Anatomy[edit]

Dempsey has received significant public attention for his ongoing role as Dr. Derek Shepherd in the drama Grey's Anatomy. Prior to landing the role of Derek Shepherd, Dempsey auditioned for the role of Dr. Gregory House on another medical show, House. Initially a midseason replacement, the show was well received and has become a highly rated program. Dempsey's character, Derek Shepherd is often referred to as "McDreamy" and has received press attention for his sex appeal, and his chemistry with Grey's Anatomy co-star Ellen Pompeo was well received by fans and critics. Dempsey also appeared in two episodes of the Grey's spinoff Private Practice, playing the same character as in Grey's Anatomy.[17]

Dempsey was nominated for Best Performance by an Actor in a Television Series–Drama at the 2006 Golden Globes for the role. His success on the show has led to his becoming a spokesman for Mazda and State Farm Insurance.[citation needed] BuddyTV ranked him #1 on its list of "TV's Sexiest Men of 2011".[18]

Promotional work[edit]

He has been the face of L'Oreal and Versace and was featured in ads for Serengeti sunglasses. In November 2008 he launched an Avon fragrance named Unscripted, and due to its success, a second fragrance named Patrick Dempsey 2 was launched in October 2009.[dated info] On September 29, 2012, Mexican cable company Cablemás, Megacable and Mexico city's Cablevisión launched an advertising campaign featuring Patrick Dempsey as the love interest of a domestic worker who comes across his profile on an online dating site.[19] Starting 2013, Patrick Dempsey is the face of Silhouette, promoting eyewear fashion from Austria.[20]

Auto racing[edit]

Dempsey at the 2008 Rolex 24 Hours of Daytona.

Dempsey, who maintains an exclusive sports and vintage car collection, has enjoyed auto racing in his spare time for several years, and declared before the 2013 24 Hours of Le Mans that he would like to compete full-time, telling Eurosport:

I would like to make that [motorsports] a complete priority and just focus on this full-time. If I could just walk away from acting, I think I could do that very easily, and just focus on the driving, I would love that more than anything else.

He has competed in prestigious pro-am events such as the 24 Hours of Le Mans, Rolex 24 at Daytona sports car race, and Tecate SCORE Baja 1000 off-road race. He was a co-owner of the Vision Racing IndyCar Series team and current owner of Dempsey Racing, which is presently racing two Porsche 911 GT America's in the Tudor United Sports Car Series . He participated in this series as often as his schedule allowed, although insurance restrictions kept him from driving competitively while also filming a motion picture. In 2009, he raced a Team Seattle Advanced Engineering Ferrari F430 GT in the 2009 24 Hours of Le Mans's GT2 class, and finished ninth in class.[21]

Dempsey announced he would race the 2011 Rolex 24 at Daytona along with other races throughout the season in a Mazda RX-8.[22] Dempsey finished in third place in the GT Class of the Rolex 24 at Daytona.

In 2012, Dempsey competed in the Grand-Am Continental Tire Sports Car Challenge behind the wheel of an Aston Martin Racing-Multimatic Motorsports Aston Martin Vantage GT4, which, after five successful racing seasons in Europe, was to make its debut on American tracks.

Dempsey also formed the Dempsey Racing team to compete in the American Le Mans Series. The team fielded a full-time Oreca FLM09 in the Prototype Challenge class as well as a Lola B12/80 coupe in the Prototype 2 class (with Patrick himself driving) from Laguna Seca onward.

24 Hours of Le Mans results[edit]

After debuting at the 2009 24 Hours of Le Mans, Dempsey returned to France four years later and competed in a Porsche 911 GT3 RSR at the 2013 24 Hours of Le Mans endurance race. Dempsey and his co-drivers finished 29th overall and fourth in-class.

2009Italy Advanced Engineering
United States Team Seattle
United States Don Kitch, Jr.
United States Joe Foster
Ferrari F430 GT2LMGT230130th9th
2013United States Dempsey Del Piero-ProtonUnited States Joe Foster
United States Patrick Long
Porsche 911 GT3 RSRLMGTE-AM30529th4th

Tully's Coffee[edit]

In January 2013, Dempsey announced that his company (Global Baristas) had secured the winning bid to purchase Seattle-based Tully's Coffee, which had filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection in October. Dempsey's bid of $9.15M was enough to secure Tully's over the bids of six others including Starbucks. Dempsey's company will control 47 Tully's locations in the Seattle area, but not the online business which had been purchased by Green Mountain Coffee Roasters in 2009.[23]

Following a legal dispute with investor group Global Baristas owner Michael Avenatti, Dempsey left the group, in effect officially leaving his managerial positions with Tully's. Dempsey had filed a lawsuit on behalf of Global Baristas, claiming that Avenatti borrowed $2 million against Tully's assets without informing Dempsey, rather than fully financing the coffee chain as was promised, calling the 15 percent interest rate on the loan “exorbitant” and sued for Avenatti to fund Tully’s operations and meet its working capital needs, as well as for any damages owed the company. Soon after, Avenatti’s office issued a second statement saying the partnership was dissolved and that Dempsey wished the lawyer and the company “all the best.” Avenatti has stated the dispute was only a "misunderstanding" and will continue operating the group with other investors and new management.[24][25]

Personal life[edit]

Dempsey was diagnosed with dyslexia at age 12. As a result, it is necessary for him to memorize all his lines in order to perform, even for auditions where he was unlikely to get the part.[26][27]

Entertainment Weekly put Dempsey's hair on its end-of-the-decade "best-of" list, saying, "What made Grey's Anatomy a mega-medi-hit? It could have something to do with creator Shonda Rhimes' scalpel-sharp writing…or McDreamy's impossibly luxurious man hair. Just saying."[28] In 2005, People magazine ranked him second in its annual list of "Sexiest Men Alive"[29] and again in 2006.[30]

Marriages and family[edit]

Dempsey has been married twice. In 1987, he married actress and acting coach Rochelle "Rocky" Parker. She appeared with Dempsey in the film In the Mood. The couple divorced in 1994.

On July 31, 1999, Dempsey married Jillian Fink. The couple have three children, daughter Tallulah Fyfe (born February 20, 2002) and twins Sullivan Patrick and Darby Galen (born February 1, 2007).[31]

Patrick Dempsey Center for Cancer Hope & Healing and Dempsey Challenge[edit]

In 1997, Dempsey's mother was diagnosed with ovarian cancer, which subsequently relapsed five times. On March 24, 2014, his mother died in Lewiston, Maine, at the age of 79. In response to his mother's bouts with cancer, Dempsey helped start the Patrick Dempsey Center at Central Maine Medical Center in Lewiston. In October 2009, when Dempsey introduced the first Dempsey Challenge, registration was closed after reaching the goal of 3,500 cyclists, runners and walkers. The event raised more than $1 million for the cancer center. His mother was in the crowd as Dempsey finished his 50-mile ride.[32] The Challenge has since become an annual October event presented by Amgen in the Lewiston–Auburn area.[33]


1985The StuffUnderground Stuff buyer #2Uncredited
Heaven Help UsCorbet
1986Meatballs III: Summer JobRudy Gerner
1987Can't Buy Me LoveRonald MillerYoung Artist Award for Best Young Actor in a Motion Picture – Comedy
In the MoodEllsworth 'Sonny' Wisecarver
1988Some GirlsMichael
1989LoverboyRandy Bodek
Happy TogetherChristopher Wooden
1990Coupe de VilleRobert 'Bobby' Libner
1991MobstersMeyer Lansky
RunCharlie Farrow
1993Bank RobberBilly
1994With HonorsEverett Calloway
1995OutbreakJimbo Scott
1997Hugo PoolFloyd GaylenLimited release
2000Scream 3Det. Mark Kincaid
2002Sweet Home AlabamaAndrew Hennings
The Emperor's ClubOlder Louis Masoudi
2004Iron Jawed AngelsBen Weissman
2006Brother Bear 2KenaiVoice, Direct-to-video (replaced Joaquin Phoenix)
2007Freedom WritersScott Casey
EnchantedRobert PhilipNominated—MTV Movie Award for Best Kiss (with Amy Adams)
2008Made of HonorTom Bailey
2010Valentine's DayHarrison Copeland
2011Transformers: Dark of the MoonDylan GouldNominated - Golden Raspberry Award for Worst Supporting Actor
FlypaperTrippAlso producer
1986Fast TimesMike Damone7 episodes
DisneylandKellin TaylorEpisode: A Fighting Choice
1989The Super Mario Bros. Super Show!The PlantVoice, Episode: Super Plant/The Pied Koopa
1996A Season in PurgatoryHarrison BurnsMiniseries
199720,000 Leagues Under the SeaPierre ArronaxTV movie
1998Crime and PunishmentRaskolnikovTV movie
2000–2001Will and GraceMatthew3 episodes
2000–2002Once and AgainAaron Brooks4 episodes
Nominated—Emmy Award for Outstanding Guest Actor in a Drama Series
2003Lucky 7Peter ConnorTV movie
Karen SiscoCarl WilkensEpisode: Blown Away
2004Iron Jawed AngelsBen WeissmanTV movie
The PracticeDr. Paul Stewart3 episodes
2005–presentGrey's AnatomyDr. Derek Shepherd209 episodes
Screen Actors Guild Award for Best Cast in a Drama Series (2006)
People's Choice Award for Favorite Male TV Star (2007, 2008)
Nominated—Golden Globe Award for Best Actor in a Drama Series (2005, 2006)
Nominated—Screen Actors Guild Award for Best Cast in a Drama Series (2006, 2008)
Nominated—Screen Actors Guild Award for Best Actor in a Drama Series (2005)
Nominated—People's Choice Award for Favorite Male TV Star (2009)
2009, 2012Private PracticeDr. Derek Shepherd2 episodes


  1. ^ Le Mans 24 Hours 2013 "24 Minutes" Episode 2, Eurosport HD, declared at approximately 16:30
  2. ^ "Amanda Dempsey a true fighter!". Daily E News. March 26, 2014. Retrieved March 26, 2014. 
  3. ^ Shoard, Catherine (November 25, 2007). "Patrick Dempsey: the Doctor is in". The Daily Telegraph (London). 
  4. ^ Van Gelder, Lawrence (October 2, 1987). "NEW FACES; PATRICK DEMPSEY, 2 FILMS, 2 LOOKS". The New York Times. 
  5. ^ "Patrick Dempsey Biography (1966–)". Retrieved 2011-04-22. 
  6. ^ Dempsey Challenge website bio. Retrieved 2011-01-18.
  7. ^ 1981 Juniors Championship of the International Jugglers' Association (IJA),
  8. ^ "'Grey's Anatomy's' Dempsey has dyslexia". MSN. 
  9. ^ Caryn james (July 26, 1991). "MOVIE REVIEW Mobsters (1991)". New York Times. 
  10. ^ Patrick Dempsey Emmy Winner
  11. ^ Matt Mitovich (8 July 2009). "Grey's Stars Dempsey and Dane Celebrate Valentine's Day". Retrieved 2009-07-08. 
  12. ^ Fleming, Michael (July 15, 2009), "Dempsey shifts gears for Universal", Variety 
  13. ^ Boucher, Geoff (July 25, 2011), "Dempsey hopes to leave 'McDreamy' in rearview", Chicago Tribune 
  14. ^ "Patrick Dempsey & Transformers – McDreamy’s Transforming Role". National Ledger. May 6, 2010. Retrieved May 12, 2010. 
  15. ^ "Patrick Dempsey: From McDreamy To ‘Transformers 3’". Access Hollywood. 2010-05-11. Retrieved 2011-04-22. 
  16. ^
  17. ^ "Greys Anatomy". Grey's Anatomy = ____. 
  18. ^ "TV's 100 Sexiest Men of 2011". BuddyTV. Retrieved March 9, 2012. 
  19. ^ "Galilea Montijo & Patrick Dempsey Film Commercial Together! - Terra USA". June 20, 2012. Retrieved October 2, 2012. 
  20. ^ D'Allesandro, Stefania. "Good Eye", People, March 4, 2013, Retrieved 2013-05-15.
  21. ^ Leveridge, Adam (2009-04-01). "Gigawave replaced by SAE at Le Mans". Retrieved 2011-04-22. 
  22. ^ Pettit, Vince (2010-12-01). "Patrick Dempsey Returns to Track". The Checkered Flag. Retrieved 2011-04-22. 
  23. ^ "Patrick Dempsey: Winning bid for coffee-shop chain 'just felt right'". CNN. January 5, 2013. Retrieved January 6, 2013. 
  24. ^ "Patrick Dempsey Says Goodbye to the Coffee Chain He Rescued". August 27, 2013. Retrieved November 13, 2013. 
  25. ^ "Dempsey walks away from Tully’s after suing partner". August 23, 2013. Retrieved November 13, 2013. 
  26. ^ USA WEEKEND Magazine[dead link]
  27. ^ Hitti, Miranda (2006-03-02). "Patrick Dempsey Reveals His Dyslexia". Retrieved 2011-04-22. 
  28. ^ Geier, Thom, Jeff Jensen, Tina Jordan, Margaret Lyons, Adam Markovitz, Chris Nashawaty, Whitney Pastorek, Lynette Rice, Josh Rottenberg, Missy Schwartz, Michael Slezak, Dan Snierson, Tim Stack, Kate Stroup, Ken Tucker, Adam B. Vary, Simon Vozick-Levinson, and Kate Ward "100 Greatest Movies, TV Shows, and More: ... 69. Patrick Dempsey's hair", Entertainment Weekly, December 11, 2009, (1079/1080):74-84. Retrieved 2011-01-13.
  29. ^ "The Sexiest Men Alive 2005 - Patrick Dempsey". People. November 15, 2005. Retrieved January 14, 2012. 
  30. ^ "The Sexiest Men Alive 2006 - Patrick Dempsey". People. November 15, 2006. Retrieved January 14, 2012. 
  31. ^ "Patrick Dempsey biography". Retrieved November 13, 2013. 
  32. ^ "Thousands Enjoy Dempsey Challenge". WMTW. 2009-10-05. Retrieved 2011-04-22. 
  33. ^ "The Dempsey Challenge". Retrieved 2011-04-22. 

External links[edit]