Hollywood heartthrob Patrick Dempsey, the actor best known as Grey’s Anatomy’s dreamy neurosurgeon, Dr. Derek Shepherd, has been adorned with the coveted title of PEOPLE’s 2023 Sexiest Man Alive. Dempsey, who has previously joked about always being “the bridesmaid” in the race for this alluring distinction, finally claims the spotlight after his celebrated cameo return to the long-running ABC series and on the eve of his riveting performance as racing legend Piero Taruffi in the eagerly anticipated biopic, Ferrari.
As Dempsey embraced his latest accolade, he was quick to channel the excitement into a force for good, shedding light on his Dempsey Center’s noble work in aiding cancer patients and their families—a cause close to his heart, inspired by his late mother’s battle with the disease. The Maine-born star, who has previously captured hearts across the globe, spoke candidly about the award being a humorous yet welcome ego boost that arrives with the serendipitous timing of his life’s rich tapestry.
Dempsey’s personal life mirrors the multifaceted persona he projects onscreen. The father of three, husband to the talented makeup artist Jillian, and a race car enthusiast, Dempsey embraces his roles with passion and charm. His children, Talula, and twins Sullivan and Darby, remain his anchors, keeping him youthful with their playful teasing about his latest achievement.
Professionally, the ‘Enchanted’ star has carved out a niche that spans beyond the silver screen. Dempsey’s return to the world of drama in Michael Mann’s Ferrari marks a pivotal moment in his career, a testament to his belief that “if you really want something, you have to go after it yourself.” His role as Piero Taruffi showcases his undying zeal for racing, a perfect symbiosis of his off-screen hobbies and on-screen endeavors.
His revelation about the title on Jimmy Kimmel Live!, presented through a Proto hologram, exemplified Dempsey’s ability to blend traditional charm with cutting-edge technology. The announcement, which aired during the November 7th episode, was a momentous occasion, replacing last year’s honoree, the debonair Chris Evans, with a man whose sex appeal has ripened with experience and authenticity.
Dempsey’s selection heralds a shift, perhaps, from a culture obsessed with fleeting trends and influencer fame, to one that values enduring charisma and the magnetic allure of someone who has steadily captured hearts through dedication, talent, and a commitment to making a difference.