Celebrity Luke Perry was born October 11, 1966, in Fredericktown, Ohio. In 1990, he got his breakthrough role as the rebellious adolescent heartthrob Dylan McKay on Aaron Spelling’s sensational TV series Beverly Hills 90210. In the past few years since, he’s enjoyed sustained success on TV along with on the stage and silver screen.
Perry’s relationship with his biological dad stayed anxious until his dad’s passing of a heart attack in 1980. It had been his stepfather, construction worker Steve Bennett, whom Perry looked to as a role model. Perry would later describe Bennett to People magazine as “the one who taught [him] the significant matters [he] needed to learn about truly being a guy.”
Understood by his teachers as a daydreamer, Perry lacked excitement for his high school’s farming program. Of his rural schooling at Fredericktown High School, Perry told Rolling Stone magazine, “we’d courses on giving birth to cows and driving tractors.”
After 3 years of auditioning and 216 rejections, Perry got his first break in 1987, getting the part of Ned Bates in the daytime TV drama Loving. The part required him to move to Nyc. In 1988, he scored another dramatic part in The Big Apple, on the soap opera Another World.
Only a year after, Perry got the part that catapulted him to stardom, when he was cast in Aaron Spelling’s teen drama show, Beverly Hills 90210. Perry had auditioned for the part of the jock, Steve Sanders, but was selected to play bad boy Dylan McKay instead. Beverly Hills 90210 creator Darren Star told Rolling Stone magazine, “When Luke walked to the audition, it had been like ‘Wow, that is the man.'”
In 1990, Perry returned to La to begin shooting 90210. With Perry on board, Fox Network’s ratings soared, mainly because of his overwhelming attractiveness as a teen heartthrob. The media generally compared him to actor James Dean, who’d also been known for his brooding good looks, his cool manner and his character as a rebellious but inwardly tormented teenager. Perry was even allowed the privilege of directing two episodes during the 1999 season. 90210 ran for a decade and aired its last episode on May 17, 2000, after which Perry took on his first big screen character, as Ray Ray in Scorchers.
Perry continued to pursue his film career using a supporting character in the first Buffy the Vampire Slayer picture (1992). In once, he embarked on what would end up being a long stream of TV voiceovers and guest appearances. Perhaps most famous was his character as Rev. Jeremiah Cloutier on 10 episodes of HBO’s Oz (2001–2002).
Perry immediately returned to movie, and restarted his TV guest appearances, including a nine-episode spot on FCU: Fact Checkers Unit.
Perry’s recent important movie projects range from the 2010 comedy Good Intentions.
Having wed in 1993 and divorced in 2003, Perry has shared custody of his two kids—a son, Jack, and a daughter, Sophie.
In a January 2011 interview with Creators Syndicate, he expressed a need to go back to a continuing TV series character.