Many fans consider Dawson’s Creek a perfect show. And they are not far from the truth. The theme song of the show said it all. The cast wanted to live right now, right here. The drama series ended in 2003, but for some of us, it feels like a lifetime. Actors moved on to different and new projects. Some of them won awards, others did not. Let’s see what happened to the cast of Dawson’s Creek.
The American teen drama television series followed the lives of a close-knit group of friends through their high school and college years. It ran from 1998 to 2003. Starring Katie Holmes, James Van Der Beek, Michelle Williams, Joshua Jackson, and more, the show has an impressive cast. In 2007, Entertainment Weekly placed it on Number 90 on the list of TV classics.
After more than 18 years than the show’s end, let’s see what happened to the cast of Dawson’s Creek.
James Van Der Beek – Dawson Leery
James portrayed the title character in the show. He went on to have a very successful career. He auditioned for the show in 1997, among others. The debut of Dawson established Van Der Beek’s career, the show, and the WB network.
During the show, he also appeared in the teen football drama Varsity Blues. The movie held the US box office Number 1 spot for its first two weeks. For that role, James won anMTV Movie Award. At that point, People magazine selected him as one of the 50 most beautiful people in the world.
In the next few years, he appeared in movies like Texas Rangers, Jay & Silent Bob Strike Back, Scary Movie, The Rules of Attraction, and more.
After Dawson’s Creek ended, he returned to off-Broadway. And then he got a role in the ABC cult sitcom, Don’t Trust the B—- in Apartment 23. In that show, he played a fictionalized version of himself.
In 2008, he got a recurring role on One Tree Hill. In 2015, he got the main role in CSI: Cyber. He competed in the 28th season of Dancing with the Stars and finished in 5th place.
Michelle Williams – Jen Lindley
Michelle often appeared in independent productions with dark or tragic themes. So far, she won two Golden Globe awards, and a Primetime Emmy Award. She also earned four Academy Award nominations and one Tony Award nomination.
Michelle started her career with guest appearances. She made her movie debut in Lassie in 1994. And at 15, she gained emancipation from her parents. Williams got her big break in Dawson’s Creek. Years later, she said Dawson served as “the best acting class”.
She filmed the show for nine months per year. And for the remaining three months, she worked for independent features.
In the late 2000s and early 2010s, she appeared in the movies Wendy and Lucy, Blue Valentine, and Manchester by the Sea. In 2011, she portrayed Marilyn Monroe in the drama My Week with Marilyn, earning two Golden Globes for the movie.
She is an advocate for equal pay.
Joshua Jackson – Pacey Witter
So far, Joshua has had a successful career in television. He played the main role in a couple of television shows. And everything started with Dawson’s Creek.
Following the end of the show, he portrayed Peter Bishop in Fringe, a science fiction series, and then Cole Lockhart in The Affair, a drama series. Jackson’s biggest strength is he can adapt to any type of television show, be it drama, comedy, or anything else.
His movies include One Week, Cruel Intentions, The Skulls, Shutter, and The Mighty Ducks movie series. For his appearance in One Week, he won a Genie Award for Best Performance. His latest project includes When They See Us, a Netflix drama series in 2019. And in 2020, he starred alongside Reese Witherspoon and Kerry Washington in the Hulu mini-series Little Fires Everywhere.
Katie Holmes – Joey Potter
Some might say that Katie had the most successful career of the cast of Dawson’s Creek. She has more than 40 acting credits. And she won a couple of awards. Some good, some bad, like a nomination for Worst Supporting Actress in Batman Begins (2006). The same year, she won the “most tiresome tabloid targets” together with her husband Tom Cruise.
But onto her acting career. In 2000, she appeared in the movies Wonder Boys and The Gift. In the next few years, she appeared in Abandon, Phone Booth, The Singing Detective, Pieces of April, Batman Begins, Thank You For Smoking, Mad Money, Don’t Be Afraid of the Dark, First Daughter, and Jack and Jill. She had a busy schedule from 2000 to 2010.
She returned to television in 2008, appearing in an episode of Eli Stone. The same year, she made her Broadway debut in All My Sons.
In 2006, she got married to actor Tom Cruise, and the two got into Scientology. That set of beliefs brought them together, but also served as the reason for their divorce years later.
Over the years, she managed to get roles because of her talent, but also her looks. From 1999 onward, the British and American editions of FHM magazine named her as one of the sexiest women in the world. In 2003, People named her one of the 50 most beautiful people.
Mary-Margaret Humes – Gail Leery
Before making it in Hollywood, Mary won the Miss Florida USA pageant. She also finished as the third runner up in the 1975 Miss USA. Because of her looks, she easily made it into the world of acting. Humes started as a television actress, appearing in more than 50 shows during her career.
From 1998 to 2003, she played a part in Dawson’s Creek. She portrayed the mother of the title character. And following the end of the show, she guest-starred in a couple of shows, including Grey’s Anatomy, Criminal Minds, CSI: Crime Scene Investigation, and more. She also appeared in a couple of Hallmark channel movies.
Her latest projects include Christmas in Love in 2018, Winter Love Story in 2019, and A Feeling of Home in 2019.
John Wesley Shipp
The Flash ran through Dawson’s Creek. Wesley Shipp had a successful career even before the show. He played Barry Allen, the Flash, on CBS from 1990 to 1991. He then joined the cast of Dawson’s Creek, portraying Mitch Leery from 1998 to 2001.
Following the end of the show, he took a short break. And then he returned to daytime in shows like One Life to Live, Drop Dead Diva, and Teen Wolf.
But the Flash left a mark on his career. In 2014, the CW network cast him as a mysterious character in The Flash TV show. He turned Henry Allen, Barry Allen’s father. He also portrayed Barry Allen from another earth, reprising his role as The Flash.
Kerr Smith – Jack McPhee
The American actor spent most of his career in television. Following the end of Dawson’s Creek, he portrayed Kyle Brody in the supernatural drama Charmed.
He also appeared in The Fosters, My Bloody Valentine 3D, and a couple of movies. Kerr played the character Carter Horton in Final Destination.
He also appeared in the fourth season of Riverdale. He replaced Mr. Weatherbee as the new principal of Riverdale High.
Mary Beth Peil – Evelyn Grams Ryan
During her career, Mary earned a couple of nominations, including two Tony Awards, Emmy Award, Outer Critics Circle Awards, and more.
Following the end of the show, she appeared in the Broadway revival of the musical Nine. In it, she portrayed the mother of Antonio Banderas’s character. She again portrayed a mother, this time Nancy Raegan’s mother in the Showtime movie The Reagans.
From 2010, she appeared in the original Broadway cast of the Lincoln Center Theater Production for the musical Women on the Verge of a Nervous Breakdown. The show ran until January 2011. She then joined the cast of the musical Anastasia.