Daniel James “Dan” Cortese is an American actor who became famous after portraying the character of ‘Laird Perry Rollins’ in the NBC sitcom ‘Veronica's Closet’. He also played the role of ‘Dan Montgomery’ in the show ‘The Single Guy’ in 1997. He gained appreciation for his portrayal of ‘Jess Hanson’ in the series ‘Melrose Place’ as well. Besides making his name as an actor on television, Cortese has also grabbed attention as a host after his successful stint with the show ‘MTV Sports,’ which won an Emmy Award. Despite his resounding success on television, Cortese has failed to make a mark on the silver screen. However, he has appeared in a few films in supporting roles.
Before earning a reputation as an actor, Dan Cortese hosted the reality sports show, ‘MTV Sports’, on MTV between 1992 and 1997. The show became highly popular among its audience, and in 1993, it won the Emmy Award for the Outstanding Edited Sports Series/Anthology. In 1995, it won the Cable Ace Award for Outstanding Sports Information Series. During his time with the show, Cortese started gaining popularity and landed a small role on the silver screen, appearing in the film ‘Demolition Man’ in 1993. He then played small roles in television shows like ‘Seinfeld’, ‘Melrose Place’, ‘Caroline in the City’, ‘The Single Guy’, ‘Volcano: Fire on the Mountain’, and ‘Baby Blues’.
Cortese soon received another role on the silver screen, this time playing Jason in the film ‘The Lottery’ in 1996. He then portrayed the character of ‘John’ in the comedy-drama film ‘After Sex’.
In 1997, Dan Cortese received an offer to play the role of ‘Laird Perry Rollins’ in the NBC sitcom ‘Veronica’s Closet’. The show ran for three seasons and Cortese appeared in 67 episodes between 1997 and 2000. The show featured Kirstie Alley as the title character and also had Wallace Langham, Daryl Mitchell, and Kathy Najimy among other lead characters.
His next major role on television came in 2003 when he featured in the sitcom ‘Rock Me, Baby’ as ‘Jimmy Cox’. The show ran for almost eight months on UPN and featured Bianca Kajlich, Tammy Townsend, and Carl Anthony Payne II among other actors. In the same year, Cortese appeared in the show ‘What I Like About You’, as ‘Vic Meladeo’. The show revolved around two sisters, played by Jennie Garth and Amanda Bynes, and ran on The WB Television Network between 2002 and 2006. His next notable work came in the television show ‘Surviving Suburbia’ as ‘Onno’. His film career includes small roles in films like ‘Locusts: The 8th Plague’, ‘Everybody Wants to Be Italian’ and ‘Soccer Mom’.
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Family & Personal Life
Dan Cortese was born on September 14, 1967, in Sewickley, Pennsylvania. He attended Quaker Valley High School, Leetsdale, in his childhood and was involved in sports like football and basketball. He also played as a quarterback during his time at the University of North Carolina. He received his bachelor’s degree in broadcasting from the University of North Carolina.
Cortese married Dee Dee Hemby on May 21, 1994, and had two children, India Isabella and Roman. The couple separated and obtained a divorce in June 2012.