Television a major player in discovering leading men


Casting director Jane Jenkins remembers Patrick Dempsey in his pre-McDreamy doldrums. So did a lot of other people in Hollywood. For no apparent reason, Jenkins said, "We had to fight with everyone to hire this guy." In 1989, he had been the romantic lead in Loverboy; by 2000, he was the cop in Scream 3.

Then, of course, Grey's Anatomy popped like a champagne cork.

"It took a hit television series for him to suddenly become everybody's leading man," said Jenkins, co-founder of the Casting Co., which has helped film and television directors narrow their casting choices for 27 years. Known as sexy neurosurgeon Derek Shepherd on ABC's four-season medical-show phenomenon, Dempsey is now starring in Disney's big-screen hit Enchanted. Next year, he'll play the romantic lead in Columbia's comedy Made of Honor.

As the class divide between TV and film keeps shrinking, TV has been solidifying its role as a maker of leading men. Original shows, on cable as well as network TV, are shifting attention to more mature and complex characters. The small screen is now crowded with charming, smart, confident, humorous grown-up men.

(Source: Houston Chronicle)

Actors, Hollywood, TV, TV Shows

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