Jeffrey Dean Morgan was born April 22, 1966 in Seattle Washington. His parents; Richard Dean Morgan and Sandy Thomas, divorced at some point in his life. Both parents remarried, giving Morgan a number of step siblings. He has also mentioned during an appearance on Jimmy Kimmel, as having a sister.
Morgan attended Ben Franklin Elementary School, Rose Hill Junior High and was a 1984 graduate of Lake Washington High School. While in school he was active in sports, playing both football and basketball. Basketball was his true love. Morgan was captain of his varsity basketball team and graduated with a basketball scholarship under his belt. He attended Skaggit Valley College in Mount Vernon, Washington. Many interviews site the reason he left college was due to a knee injury, but in a March 2009 interview it was revealed "he got jumped by five guys and stabbed."
With his dreams of being a basketball star behind him, Morgan then turned his attention to painting and writing. He has been quoted as working a variety of jobs in the early days as well as starting a graphic arts company. Then a friend asked him to drive the U-Haul truck in his move to LA and everything changed.
A young Jeffrey Dean Morgan
The Walking Dead
The Good Wife
The Secret Life of Marilyn Monroe
Star Trek: Enterprise
CSI: Crime Scene Investigation
Walker, Texas Ranger
The Burning Zone
Dr. Edward Marcase
In The Blink of an Eye
Morgan then turned his attention to painting and writing. He has been quoted as working a variety of jobs in the early days as well as starting a graphic arts company. Then a friend asked him to drive the U-Haul truck in his move to LA and everything changed.
What turned out to be a weekend visit turned into a permanent move. After being told he should try out for film work, Morgan auditioned and got the part of a killer pimp in a Roger Corman movie called Uncaged. The year was 1991.
In 1995 he had a bit part in the movie Dillinger and Capone as a reporter. A role in the movie Undercover Heat and two episodes guest starring on the television series Extreme rounded out the year.
1996 was a much better year for Morgan. After playing the role of Jesse in the made for television movie In The Blink of an Eye, and an episode of Sliders, he landed the lead role in UPN's sci-fi series The Burning Zone, a series about a team of scientists sent out to extinguish biologial hot zones. Morgan played Dr. Edward Marcase, a young virologist with a spiritual side. After eleven episodes Morgan left the show due to artistic differences with the show's management. The fall out would follow him in his career for years to come.
Denny Duquette; Grey's Anatomy
Hard Work Pays Off
Over the next ten years Morgan built up a resume of television guest roles on series like Walker, Texas Ranger, ER, The Practice, Angel, The Division, JAG, and CSI. He also won roles in several independent films such as Legal Deceit, Road Kill, Six and Dead & Breakfast.
But if one year could be called "The Year of Jeffrey Dean Morgan", it would be the year 2006. While guest starring as Judah Botwin, the deceased husband of Mary Louise Parker's character in the HBO series Weeds, Morgan caught the eye of Grey's Anatomy writer/producer Shonda Rhimes. Rhimes invited him to audition for the part of Denny Duquette, and as they say, the rest is history. Thanks to his role as Denny and his dual appearance as John Winchester on the WB/CW series Supernatural, Morgan's career began to skyrocket.
Over the next two years Morgan worked on several independent films. His next major motion picture role was P.S. I Love You. In the film Morgan played the love interest of Hilary Swank's character, Holly. The film was full of "firsts" for Morgan - playing guitar, using an Irish accent, and baring his naked butt. His first leading man role came the following year in The Accidental Husband with Uma Thurman.
In 2009 Morgan shocked his fans with his portrayal of The Comedian in The Watchmen. Though the film failed at the box office it was a critical success. Morgan was praised for his performance and gained a whole new legion of fans, not to mention a slew of future film prospects.
The Comedian from Watchmen
Batman vs. Superman: Dawn of Justice
Guns For Hire
They Came Together
Peace, Love & Misunderstanding
Texas Killing Fields
Days of Wrath
The Accidental Husband
P.S. I Love You
Man Getting Parking Ticket
Detective Cole Davies
Six: The Mark Unleashed
Dead & Breakfast
Dillinger & Capone
To Cross The Rubicon
The Future Is Bright
Not long before Morgan won the role of Denny Duquette on Grey's Anatomy, his long time agent and friend dumped him, stating she "couldn't resurrect" his career. Since then Morgan has worked nearly non-stop building up a huge resume of films. He has five films due out in the next year alone. Most recently Morgan signed on to a new television series being developed by Starz. Magic City, a series set in the Miami during the 1960s is set to debut in 2012. Filming is set to begin in Miami in August 2011.
Many think of Morgan as an overnight sensation, but that is the furthest thing from the truth. Its taken a lot of years and a lot of hard work. And now that Hollywood's finally taken notice, its guaranteed that Jeffrey Dean Morgan will be around for for many more years to come.
Denny Duquette vs Papa Winchester
Jeffrey Dean Morgan at Amazon
© 2009 RO Edwards
SonQuioey10 on February 16, 2012:
I love him, especially in Watchmen, even though he's a serious case, just horrible character as The Comedian, but I love him anyway.
Thanks for posting.
RO Edwards (author) from Ohio on May 25, 2009:
Thank you. I'm glad you enjoyed it. I never grow tired of talking about Jeffrey.
morganslady on May 24, 2009:
A wonderful article for a wonderful man!!!
WilliesGirl on May 24, 2009:
An amazing man!!!