Fans of the original Beverly Hills, 90210 and Riverdale are in mourning. Luke Perry, whose role as Dylan McKay left 1990s kids swooning, passed away on March 4 at St. Joseph’s Hospital in Burbank, California, according to TMZ. This tragic news comes after Luke was hospitalized after he reportedly suffered a massive stroke on Feb. 27. His reps told the publication that the doctors had sedated Luke following his stroke in hopes of giving his brain a “fighting chance” to recover from the trauma. Sadly, the damage was too much for him to overcome. OkHithq.com has reached out for a statement and will update this post with any further information.
Born Coy Luther Perry III in Mansfield, Ohio, Luke grew up in the Midwest before relocating to Las Angeles in pursuit of an acting career. His earliest roles were in daytime soap operas, as he was Ned Bates in Loving and Kenny on ten episodes of Another World. His breakout role came in 1990, when he was cast as the enigmatic loner Dylan on the Fox teen drama, Beverly Hills, 90210.
“So my character, Dylan, was a poor little rich kid — everybody thinks he’s got everything going, and it’s just not always that great — but he drove a cool car and had cool hair,” Dylan told The Hollywood Reporter in 2015. “There was a running joke in the wardrobe department: People are going to be watching for the clothes. Get ’em upscale and get ’em trendy.” The move worked, as Luke became a teen idol, captivating hearts of millions. He stayed with the show until 1995, before leaving the show to pursue more mature roles. After appearing in a few TV movies, the independent feature Normal Life and the sci-fi adventure The Fifth Element, he returned to 90210 in 1998.
After 90210 went off the air in 2000, Luke appeared as Revered Jeremiah Cloutier in the HBO prison Drama Oz; starred in TV series like Jeremiah, Windfall and John From Cincinnati; and pursued an extensive voice-acting career, lending his voice to shows like Biker Mice from Mars, Pepper Ann, Clone High, and The Simpsons (where he played himself as Krusty the Clown’s half-brother.) Luke continued to appear in television shows and movies, though his career would experience a renaissance when he landed the role of Frederick “Fred” Andrews, on Riverdale. The chance to portray Archie’s father allowed Luke to flex his acting muscles in a new way.
“I like playing the dad because I like being a dad, and I think it’s a great character in the milieu of this show that I’m the grounded one, and I’m the guy who really cares about [K.J. Apa, who portrays Archie], who cares about doing a good job and being a good construction worker. I love that,” he told The Hollywood Reporter in 2017. “What you see on the screen is very much what you get. We have a real, honest communication between the two of us. I’ve met K.J.’s mom and dad, and I feel like that’s who I work for. I’ve told them, “I will look after your son as if he were my own,” and, in that regard, I do.”
Luke was married to Rachel Minnie Sharp from 1993 to 2003. The two welcomed two children into the world – daughter Sophie, (born June 7, 2000) and son Jack (born June 15, 1997). Jack is better known as professional wrestler “Jungle Boy” Nate Coy, who signed with All Elite Wrestling in 2019.