It's been almost two decades since Patrick Dempsey graced the small screen as neurosurgeon Derek "McDreamy" Shepherd on ABC's hit series "Grey's Anatomy," and even longer since his breakthrough role as the lovable outcast in "Can't Buy Me Love" from 1987.
His status as a heartthrob caused such a frenzy among fans that over the years, he appeared on the pages and covers of numerous publications countless times. Now he takes home the title of the most attractive man alive. "I'm glad it's happening at this point in my life," the 57-year-old actor says in this week's People magazine cover story.
"It's nice to have that kind of recognition; my ego definitely takes a bit of a hit, but it gives me a platform to use it for something positive." One such venture is the Dempsey Center, which he founded in honor of his late mother to support cancer patients and their loved ones.
“I was totally shocked, and then I started laughing, like, this is a joke, right? I've always been the bridesmaid," joked the 57-year-old actor, who replaced last year's title holder, Marvel's "Captain America" star Chris Evans.
In the hit medical drama "Grey's Anatomy," Derek made over 250 appearances, playing the main character from 2005 to 2015. He returned as Dr. Shepard in a recurring role in 2019, before leaving the show for good. Dempsey also starred in the 2007 Disney blockbuster, Enchanted, and its 2022 sequel, Disenchanted.
He is set to appear in Ferrari, where he plays Italian Formula 1 driver Piero Taruffi - a biopic about the life of the carmaker's founder Enzo Ferrari - due for release next month. Dempsey is married to makeup artist and beauty line founder Jillian Fink, with whom he has three children, Tallulah (21) and 16-year-old twins Sullivan and Darby.
"They'll just make fun of me and tease me and find every reason why I shouldn't be [Most Attractive Man Alive], which is good, they keep me young," he said. Other recipients of the "Most Attractive Man Alive" title include Black Panther star Michael B.
Jordan, singer John Legend, Ant-Man actor Paul Rudd, Brad Pitt, Harrison Ford, and Braveheart's Mel Gibson - who was the first recipient of the award from "People" magazine in 1985.