As Patrick Dempsey, 57, becomes the second oldest star to earn title People’s Sexiest Man Alive… a look at his dishy days as ‘McDreamy’ on Grey’s Anatomy and how he feels like he’s ‘always been the bridesmaid’ in life
Patrick Dempsey has been named as People magazine’s Sexiest Man Alive this year, making him the second oldest celebrity to ever earn the title.
The actor, 57, admitted he was shocked to receive the honour and told how he is ‘always the bridesmaid’ as he spoke about finally achieving the accolade.
‘I’ve always been the bridesmaid! I’d completely forgotten about it and never even contemplated being in this position. So my ego is good,’ he said.
He is the oldest star to earn the title since Sean Connery was named People’s Sexiest Man Alive more than 30 years ago in 1989 when he was 59 years old.
As Patrick becomes the 39th celebrity to earn the title, MailOnline takes a look back at his rise to fame, his dishy days as ‘McDreamy’ on Grey’s Anatomy and his family life.
Achievement: Patrick Dempsey has been named as People magazine’s Sexiest Man Alive this year, making him the second oldest celebrity to ever earn the title
Sexy: The actor, 57, admitted he was shocked to receive the honour (the cover is pictured) and told how he is ‘always the bridesmaid’ as he spoke about achieving the accolade
RISE TO FAME AS ROM-COM HEARTHROB
Patrick had early success as an actor in the 1980s, where he starred in an array of rom-coms including 1987’s Can’t Buy Me Love and 1989’s Loverboy.
After a whole string of smaller TV and film roles throughout the 1990s, he starred in 2002’s rom-com Sweet Home Alabama.
He appeared in the film alongside huge Hollywood names including Reese Witherspoon, Josh Lucas, Dakota Fanning and Candice Bergen.
Amid his gradual rise to the spotlight, the heartthrob appeared in Disney’s 2007 musical live action rom-com film Enchanted.
He starred as Robert Philip alongside Amy Adams as Giselle and James Marsden as Prince Edward in the film and he returned for the 2022 sequel, Disenchanted.
The original Enchanted followed the story of Giselle, the animated princess-to-be from Andalasia who was magically transported to the real-life world of New York City, where she met and fell in love with lawyer Robert Philip (Patrick).
Written by Bill Kelly and directed by Kevin Lima, it went on to become a bonafide hit, grossing $340.5million on a $85million budget.
Speaking about returning to the rom-com role in 2021, he said: ‘We need some escapism right now. We need those romantic comedies and those musicals to get people out of the doldrums that we’re in.’
As he reached global fame during the 2000s due to his big film roles and TV appearance on Grey’s Anatomy, Patrick continued finding success with rom-coms.
He appeared in Made of Honor in 2008, then appeared among the very star-studded cast of Valentine’s Day in 2010 and also starred in 2016’s Bridget Jones’s Baby.
Heartthrob: After a whole string of smaller TV and film roles throughout the 1990s, he starred in 2002’s rom-com Sweet Home Alabama alongside Reese Witherspoon and Candice Bergen
Notable: Amid his gradual rise to the spotlight, he appeared in Disney’s 2007 musical live action rom-com film Enchanted
Romance: As he reached global fame during the 2000s, Patrick continued finding success with rom-coms and appeared in Bridget Jones’s Baby with Renee Zellweger and Colin Firth
‘MCDREAMY’ DAYS IN GREY’S ANATOMY
Despite his movie success, Patrick is arguably best known for his role as heartthrob neurosurgeon Derek ‘McDreamy’ Shepherd in Grey’s Anatomy.
He first appeared on the show in 2005 and went on to star in a series of dramatic, romantic and explosive storylines across the next 10 years.
Viewers eagerly followed as his romance with Meredith Grey (Ellen Pompeo) developed from a one-night stand, to an on-off workplace romance, until they legally married in season seven so they could adopt Zola.
After viewers avidly followed their marriage and family life, his character was then tragically killed off in a car accident in season 11 of the medical drama series in 2015.
Fans were left completely devastated by his character’s death, and some even threatened to boycott Grey’s Anatomy at the time over the heartbreaking storyline.
However, he sweetly made a brief comeback in surviving wife Meredith Grey’s beach dream sequence during the launch episode of the 17th series.
Show creator Shonda Rhimes previously confirmed Patrick would rather kill off his character than split from his long-term partner as it would compromise their love story.
Grey’s Anatomy quickly gained a wide fanbase upon its premiere and has become the one of the longest-running shows in the network’s history.
Recognisable: Despite his movie success, Patrick is arguably best known for his role as neurosurgeon Derek ‘McDreamy’ Shepherd in Grey’s Anatomy
Romance: He first appeared on the show in 2005 and went on to star in dramatic storylines across the next 10 years as his relationship with Meredith Grey (Ellen Pompeo) developed
RELATIONSHIP WITH HIS WIFE… AND THE CHEEKY THING THAT SAVED THEIR MARRIAGE
Patrick has been married to his make-up artist wife Jillian Fink since 1999 and despite a short split in 2015, the couple have been loved-up ever since.
They first met when Patrick attended Jillian’s hair salon for an appointment, with Jillian thinking her colleagues were joking around when she saw the famous star’s name in her books.
Hair stylist Jillian, who has a very star-studded clientele, previously told how she was ‘shocked’ when he walked through the door, but was also pleased because he was ‘so cute’.
Patrick and Jillian quickly became friends but remained platonic as they were both in relationships at the time, with Patrick cheekily admitting she was ‘always flirting’.
They then started dating in 1997 and two years later, they tied the knot at Patrick’s family home in Maine in a romantic ceremony.
The couple, who share three children, recently marked their 24th wedding anniversary, but things haven’t always been smooth-sailing for the couple.
In January 2015, the couple briefly separated but Patrick told how he realised that he didn’t want to get a divorce and they reconciled just months later in the spring.
The racing car driver previously revealed the cheeky thing that helped to save his marriage with his wife Jillian as he reflected on their brief split.
Smitten: Patrick has been married to his make-up artist wife Jillian Fink since 1999 and despite a short split in 2015, the couple have been loved-up ever since
‘You’ve got to keep at it,’ he told People magazine back in 2016. ‘You’ve got to communicate, and stay open and not get lazy. And not give up. And lots of sex!’
Despite their rocky patch, the couple managed to mend their relationship in private after going to couple’s therapy, and are now still going strong.
‘Everybody has their own path. Jill and I decided it was time to work on our issues and improve, Patrick told PEOPLE.
‘We wanted to be role models for our kids like, okay, if you have differences, you can work them out.’
Jillian works as a hairstylist and make-up artist and has worked with numerous famous faces, including Kristen Stewart, Julia Roberts, Kristen Dunst, Emilia Clarke and Jennifer Lawrence.
She ran her own hair salon in Los Angeles before selling it in 1998, and she has also created a signature lip gloss for the cast of Charlie’s Angels.
Her make-up products were also put to use on the set of Sweet Home Alabama and she was appointed as Avon’s first Global Creative Color Director in 2007.
Patrick has been a longtime supporter of his wife’s career and has even modelled for one of Jillian’s campaigns.
Jillian has launched two make-up lines and released her own app called FYFE beauty in 2020, which saw the make-up artist giving tutorials for users.
Jillian is often seen making very glamorous red carpet appearances with her husband, and recently joined him at Venice Film Festival as he promoted his new film Ferrari.
Patrick was previously married to late actress Rochelle Parker from 1987 until 1994, he was 21 and she was 47 at the time they exchanged vows. She died in 2014.
The couple, who share three children and first met at Jillian’s hair salon, recently marked their 24th wedding anniversary together
Separation: In January 2015, the couple briefly separated but Patrick told how he realised that he didn’t want to get a divorce and they reconciled just months later (pictured in 2022)
Jillian and Patrick share three children together – Talula Fyfe, 21, and twins Darby Galen and Sullivan Patrick, both 16, who they welcomed in 2007.
They keep their family life relatively private but their kids are sometimes seen accompanying the couple on red carpets.
The whole family were seen attending the premiere of The Art Of Racing In The Rain, which Patrick produced, back in 2019 in a rare joint appearance.
Giving a rare insight into motherhood, Jillian told how she likes to be make-up free despite her profession because she doesn’t want her children to remember her always putting it on.
She said she feels most beautiful looking and laughing at her children, adding that she adores their ‘super silly and natural’ personalities.
‘I would hate for them to remember me as ‘in a mirror doing your make-up,’ she told Maine Women Magazine.
‘I think that is why I like to do everything on the vanity front as condensed and fast as possible. I call it ‘lazy girl makeup.’
Family: Jillian and Patrick share three children together – Talula Fyfe, 21, and twins Darby Galen and Sullivan Patrick, both 16, who they welcomed in 2007 (pictured in 2019)
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