Jensen Ackles as Dean Winchester
Born on March 1, 1978 in Dallas Texas, Jensen Ross Ackles is the son of actor Alan Roger Ackles, and Donna Joan Shaffer. He is the middle child of three kids, and is of Irish and British ancestry. While in high school, he was a baseball and lacrosse player who aspired to study sports medicine at Texas Tech University. However, his dreams of becoming a physical therapist were shortly replaced by aspirations of becoming an actor.
Ackles began to focus on his acting career in 1996, when he started landing guest roles on Mr. Rhodes, Sweet Valley High, and Cybill. He later became part of the cast of Days of Our Lives, where he played Eric Brady. In 1998, he won a Soap Opera Digest Award for Best Male Newcomer, and was nominated three times (from 1998-2000) for a Daytime Emmy Award for Outstanding Younger Actor in a Drama Series for his work on the soap opera. Upon leaving Days of Our Lives in 2000, Ackles tried out for Smallville‘s Clark Kent, which was later played by Tom Welling. He then moved on to play both Ben/X5-493 and Alec/X5-494 in FOX’s Dark Angel, and landed the role of CJ on Dawson’s Creek in 2003. In 2004, he returned to Smallville to play Jason Teague, the romantic interest of Lana Lang. A year later, he landed the role of Dean Winchester in the WB series, Supernatural.
In 2006, Ackles landed a major role in the comedy film Ten-Inch Hero. The film casts Ackles in the role of the hilarious and sex-crazed Priestly, a guy who works in a submarine sandwich shop and spends his days dispensing free-wheeling advice to customers. Not only will the role allow Ackles to show off his comedic chops, but he also gets a multi-colored mohawk as well. Unfortunately, the film still doesn’t have a release date or a distribution deal, so fans are encouraged to visit the official Ten Inch Hero website for more information on how to spread the word.
Aside from his film and TV work, Ackles also received great praise for his first appearance in a professional stage production. From June 5 to June 10 of 2007, he starred in a production of A Few Good Men in Ft. Worth, Texas. He played Lt. Daniel Kaffee, which is the role that Tom Cruise made famous in the film version. He starred alongside actor Lou Diamond Phillips, and plans to do more theater work in the future.
As for Supernatural, TV Guide talked to Ackles about his work on the series and how the fans have supported the production. He said, “They’re very avid, those fans. They’re very passionate about the show and those characters. I like that they’re very protective of those characters. I get protective of the characters as well. If I read something on the pages that I don’t agree with, I’ll call [series creator] Eric [Kripke] and say, ‘Eric, what are you doing here, buddy?’ We’re lucky enough to be able to do that.”
In an interview with Variety, Ackles answered an array of amusing personal questions that give some insight into what he enjoys in life, as well as his sense of humor:
Who do you think is the best actor in Hollywood at the moment? (male or female)
Johnny Depp (I was going to try to be cool and think of someone obscure, but he’s too good to ignore)
Who do you think was the brightest star of the silver screen?
If you could play any real-life person in a movie, who would it be and why?
Tiger Woods because I would get paid to play golf.
Do you have a dream project?
Three films that mean a lot to me:
Cool Hand Luke, directed by Stuart Rosenberg
Once Upon A Time In The West, directed by Sergio Leone
Saving Private Ryan, directed by Steven Spielberg (I watched it with my Grandfather prior to his death — he fought in that war)
Song currently playing in my iPod:
“Staggolee,” Pacific Gas & Electric
Three songs that mean a lot to me:
“El Paso,” Marty Robbins,
“Texas Flood,” Stevie Ray Vaughan
“Home,” Marc Broussard
Concert that changed your life:
Michael Jackson in Texas. July, 1984. I was 6 years old, it was my first concert.
* TV: Dr. Phil
* Film: License to Drive
* Reading material: Bathroom walls
* YouTube video: Candy Mountain
Best hangover remedy?
Exercise, but good luck!
What’s the biggest upside of the Internet?
What is the biggest downside of the Internet?
Consumption of my life.
What advice would you give to someone trying to break into your profession?
Make sure you’re doing it for the right reasons.
Are there any activities you do to make you feel un-famous?
Yes, working in Canada
What’s more dangerous: a mountain lion or a bitter ex?
Depends on which ex.
What is the single worst purchase you’ve made in the past year?
If you were an adult film star, what would your name be?
Pudgy Midway (I think that’s right)
(Photos courtesy of The CW)