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Every (Mc)Dreamy Photo from Patrick Dempsey's Sexiest Man Alive Cover Shoot

The Hollywood hottie is finally claiming PEOPLE's coveted title, and these sizzling shots prove he was worth the wait

By Zoey Lyttle | Updated on November 10, 2023 03:40PM EST


Patrick Dempsey is finally PEOPLE's 2023 Sexiest Man Alive, and it's been a long time coming! In the November cover story, the Grey's Anatomy star opened up about how it feels to finally hold the hunky title. "I've always been the bridesmaid!" he joked during his interview with PEOPLE.

Check out all the dreamist photos of Demspey on the set of his cover shoot for the long-awaited moment in the Sexiest Man Alive spotlight.

01 | Worth the Wait

Patrick Dempsey's been stealing hearts since he broke into Hollywood in 1987's Can't Buy Me Love, and he further secured his hunk status as Dr. Derek Shepherd on Grey's Anatomy. And in 2023, the (mc)dreamy actor has finally been crowned PEOPLE's Sexiest Man Alive.

02 | Dreamy as Every

"I'm glad it's happening at this point in my life," Dempsey told PEOPLE in his November cover story. "It's nice to have the recognition, and certainly my ego takes a little bump, but it gives me the platform to use it for something positive."

03 | Long Time Coming

Between his prolific career and undeniable good looks, Dempsey is an obvious choice for Sexiest Man Alive. But the superstar admits he didn't see it coming!

"I was completely shocked, and then I started laughing, like, this is a joke, right?" he told PEOPLE.

04 | ' My Ego is Good'

"I'd completely forgotten about it and never even contemplated being in this position," he added of his reaction. "So my ego is good."

(obsessed with his casual-cool outfits in these photos? So are we - Thank stylist Warren Aflie Baker, who told PEOPLE his job is easy for one key reason: "He's got the most amazing hair, so nothing generally could look bad on Patrick.")

05 | Natural Beauty

As far as good looks go, Dempsey's got some great raw material to work with and his wife Jillian, a makeup artist and founder of her own clean beauty line, to help with his glam. She even helped him prep for his cover shoot!

06 | Hard Worker

This December, fans can catch the actor flaunting his offscreen racing skills in the Michael Mann-directed film Ferrari. The bopic features Dempsey as Italian driver Piero Taruffi.

"I'd been following the movie for years, so I called Michael and said, 'I want to discuss being a part of this," Dempsey recalled. "That taught me if you really want something, you have to do it yourself."

07 | Family Man

Though he appreciated the ego boost, the actor's family has kept him humble. During his interview with PEOPLE, he hoked his three kids were "going to make fun of me and pick on me and figure out every reason why I shouldn't be [Sexiest Man Alive]," he said. "Which is good, they keep me young."

08 | Good Genes

Even when his kids poke fun, the Enchanted star is a dedicated family man. He and his wife Jillian (pictured here with Dempsey and PEOPLE Editor-in-Chief Wendy Naugle) share their daughter Talula, 21, and 16-year-old twin sons Syllivan and Darby.

09 | Super Dad

During his Sexiest Man Alive cover story, Dempsey opened up about what it's like raising kids in the public eye. All three of them, he said "want to have their own identity, separate from me and that shadow."

"They all have unique qualities and they have their own goals that they need to develop and harvest themselves and we just try to model our behavior and hopefully they'll pick up on that," he explained.

10 | Confidence in Key

Looking back on his own childhood, Dempsey remembers always having high energy. Growing up in Maine, "I needed to be moving all the time. Lot of sports, baseball, soccer, skiing, cycling," he told PEOPLE. "I had dyslexia, so the classroom was never happy, and I was really a late bloomer."

In his youth, Dempsey joined a vaudeville troupe and rode a unicycle while juggling. "People are very enthusiastiv when you juggle," he said. "That helped my confidence a lot."

11 | All Grown Up

"I think it helps when you get older," he reflected. "You go through cycles of life, so you understand there are going to be high and low moments and what are the most important things. Everything else is a gift."

12 | Looking Good and Doing Good

As this year's Sexiest Man Alive, Dempsey hopes to bring awareness to a cause close to his heart: The Dempsey Center organization. He founded the Maine-based care and support hub to honor his late mom Amanda, who died in 2014 after a longtime battle with ovarian cancer.

13 | Kind Heart

"We help people who have been impacted by cancer," he said. "We don't treat the disease, we treat the person and entire family at no cost in what is called wraparound care."

14 | Healing and Helping

The Dempsey Center opened its doors before his mother died, but the actor thinks she'd be proud of how much they've accomplished. 

"We founded it in 2008, and one of the things that kept her going was going into the Center," he recalled. " She would come in and talk to people who were newly diagnosed. There's a lot of healing between both people in those moments."

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