Ethelyn Dishman

Ethelyn Dishman

Published: 24 Aug 2023


If you’re a fan of the entertainment industry, chances are you’ve come across the talented and charismatic actor Dylan McDermott. With his striking good looks and undeniable talent, McDermott has captivated audiences for decades. From his breakout role in the hit television series “The Practice” to his memorable performances in films like “Steel Magnolias” and “Olympus Has Fallen,” McDermott’s career has been nothing short of impressive.

But beyond his on-screen success, there is much more to Dylan McDermott than meets the eye. In this article, we will delve into 47 fascinating facts about this Hollywood icon. From his early life and upbringing to his varied acting roles and personal life, we’ll uncover the stories and details that have shaped McDermott into the beloved celebrity he is today. So, buckle up and get ready to discover the many layers of Dylan McDermott!

Table of Contents

Early Life and Background

Dylan McDermott was born on October 26, 1961, in Waterbury, Connecticut.

Connection to Hollywood Royalty

McDermott’s birth name is Mark Anthony McDermott, but he later changed it to Dylan, inspired by his stepmother, actress and playwright Eve Ensler.

A Passion for Acting

McDermott developed a passion for acting at a young age and attended the prestigious drama school, The Juilliard School, in New York City.

Big Break in Theater

Before making his mark in film and television, McDermott gained recognition for his stage performances, including his role in the play “Biloxi Blues” alongside Matthew Broderick.

Emmy Award-Winning Performance

In 1999, McDermott won the Primetime Emmy Award for Outstanding Lead Actor in a Drama Series for his portrayal of attorney Bobby Donnell in the hit television series “The Practice.”

Versatility on Screen

McDermott has effortlessly transitioned between various genres throughout his career, from intense dramas to romantic comedies, showcasing his versatility as an actor.

Silver Screen Success

McDermott has starred in numerous successful films, including “Steel Magnolias,” “In the Line of Fire,” and “Wonderland.”

True Detective

In 2014, McDermott joined the cast of the critically acclaimed anthology series “American Horror Story: Murder House” and garnered praise for his chilling portrayal of Dr. Ben Harmon.

A Memorable Character in “The Perks of Being a Wallflower”

McDermott portrayed the caring and supportive father figure in the film adaptation of Stephen Chbosky’s beloved novel.

Television Success

In addition to his roles on “The Practice” and “American Horror Story,” McDermott has appeared in several other successful television shows, including “Hostages” and “Stalker.”

Inspired by Real-Life Events

McDermott played FBI Special Agent Jack Larsen in the crime drama series “Stalker,” a show inspired by real-life stalking cases.

Voice Acting

McDermott lent his voice to the character of Mr. Fantastic in the animated television series “The Super Hero Squad Show.”

A Fiery Family History

McDermott’s mother, Diane, was tragically murdered in 1967 when he was just five years old. The case remained unsolved for decades.

A Passion for Photography

In addition to his acting career, McDermott is an avid photographer and has often shared his breathtaking shots on social media.

Returning to Television

In 2019, McDermott made a triumphant return to television with his portrayal of Richard Willis, a wealthy businessman, in the drama series “The Politician.”

Collaboration with Ryan Murphy

McDermott has established a strong working relationship with acclaimed showrunner Ryan Murphy, appearing in multiple projects under his direction.

A Patriot’s Journey

McDermott portrayed U.S. Army veteran Carter Shaw in the crime drama series “Dark Blue,” delving into the world of undercover police work.

Broadway Debut

In 2015, McDermott made his debut on Broadway in the play “The Motherf**ker with the Hat” and received critical acclaim for his performance.

Supporting Independent Films

McDermott has expressed his support for independent films and has appeared in several low-budget productions throughout his career.

A Family Affair

McDermott has a daughter named Colette with his ex-wife, actress Shiva Rose.

Childhood Dream

As a child, McDermott dreamed of becoming a veterinarian before finding his true passion for acting.

Philanthropic Work

McDermott supports various charitable organizations, including The Trevor Project, which focuses on suicide prevention among LGBTQ+ youth.

Breaking Boundaries

McDermott has been vocal about breaking stereotypes and encouraging diversity in Hollywood.

A Fitness Enthusiast

McDermott maintains a healthy lifestyle and enjoys activities such as hiking and practicing yoga.

Reuniting with Julia Roberts

McDermott reunited with his “Steel Magnolias” co-star Julia Roberts in the 2013 film “August: Osage County.”

International Recognition

McDermott’s talent has garnered him fans from all around the world, solidifying his status as a global star.

A Genre-Bending Series

McDermott starred in the science fiction drama series “The Grid,” which delves into the world of counter-terrorism.

Musical Talents

McDermott plays the guitar and has showcased his musical abilities in various projects.

Exploring Darker Themes

McDermott took on the challenging role of a grieving father in the psychological thriller film “The Clovehitch Killer.”

Receiving Critical Acclaim

McDermott has amassed a collection of positive reviews throughout his career, with critics praising his nuanced performances.

A Unique Fashion Sense

Known for his impeccable style, McDermott has made fashion statements both on and off the red carpet.

A Veteran Detective

McDermott portrayed Detective Jack Larsen in the crime drama series “Hostages,” showcasing his ability to bring complex characters to life.

A Lifelong Learner

Despite his success, McDermott continues to challenge himself as an actor by seeking out diverse and demanding roles.

Embracing Social Media

McDermott is active on social media platforms, such as Twitter and Instagram, where he engages with his fans and shares updates about his work.

Team Player

McDermott has often expressed his appreciation for the collaborative nature of filmmaking and values the contributions of fellow cast and crew members.

Exploring the Supernatural

McDermott starred in the horror film “The Messengers,” exploring the chilling world of supernatural occurrences.

A Golden Globe Nomination

For his portrayal of Bobby Donnell in “The Practice,” McDermott received a Golden Globe nomination for Best Performance by an Actor in a Television Series – Drama.

Thrilling Television Projects

In addition to “The Practice,” McDermott has been part of other thrilling television series, including the crime drama “Big Shots” and the political drama “Hostages.”

Transforming for Roles

McDermott has undergone physical transformations for certain roles to fully immerse himself in the characters he portrays.

Connection to the LGBTQ+ Community

McDermott has played LGBTQ+ characters on screen and has shown support for the LGBTQ+ community throughout his career.

A Charismatic Presence

Known for his charismatic on-screen presence, McDermott captivates audiences with his natural charm and magnetic performances.

Inspiring Future Generations

McDermott serves as an inspiration for aspiring actors through his dedication, craft, and ability to bring depth to his performances.

Collaborating with Veteran Directors

McDermott has worked with acclaimed directors such as Clint Eastwood, Neil Jordan, and Antoine Fuqua.

An Appreciation for Art

McDermott has shown a deep appreciation for various art forms and often attends art exhibitions and cultural events.

Television Director

In addition to acting, McDermott has also explored his talents behind the camera, directing an episode of the television series “The Practice.”

A Dedicated Family Man

McDermott prioritizes his role as a father and cherishes the time spent with his daughter, Colette.

Continuing to Evolve

With each new project, McDermott continues to evolve as an actor, immersing himself in diverse roles and challenging the boundaries of his craft.

As we conclude our exploration of the 47 fascinating facts about Dylan McDermott, it is evident that he is not only an accomplished actor but an individual with depth, passion, and a genuine love for his craft. From his early theater days to his captivating performances on screen, McDermott has left an indelible mark on the entertainment industry. As fans, we eagerly anticipate his future projects and eagerly await the next opportunity to witness his extraordinary talent.


In conclusion, Dylan McDermott is a talented and versatile actor who has made a significant impact in the entertainment industry. From his early breakout role in “Steel Magnolias” to his compelling performances in “The Practice” and “American Horror Story,” McDermott has proven his ability to captivate audiences with his range and depth. With a career spanning over three decades, he continues to impress both critics and viewers alike with his exceptional talent and dedication to his craft. Whether he’s portraying a lawyer, a detective, or a troubled character, McDermott consistently delivers compelling and memorable performances. As a highly respected and influential figure in Hollywood, it is clear that Dylan McDermott’s contributions to the world of cinema will continue to be cherished for many years to come.


Q: How did Dylan McDermott get his start in acting?

A: Dylan McDermott began his acting career in New York City, where he studied at the prestigious HB Studio and performed in off-Broadway productions before making his way to Hollywood.

Q: What are some of Dylan McDermott’s most notable roles?

A: Some of Dylan McDermott’s most notable roles include his portrayal of Bobby Donnell in the hit series “The Practice,” Detective Jack Larsen in “Stalker,” and Ben Harmon in the first season of “American Horror Story.”

Q: Has Dylan McDermott won any awards for his performances?

A: Yes, Dylan McDermott has been recognized for his talent with several prestigious awards, including a Golden Globe for his performance in “The Practice” and a Primetime Emmy nomination for his role in “American Horror Story: Murder House.”

Q: What other projects has Dylan McDermott been involved in?

A: In addition to his television work, Dylan McDermott has appeared in numerous films, including “In the Line of Fire,” “Wonderland,” and “Olympus Has Fallen.”

Q: Is Dylan McDermott involved in any philanthropic endeavors?

A: Yes, Dylan McDermott is actively involved in various charitable causes, particularly those that support mental health awareness and advocacy.