The Indiana native’s first role was as Jeffrey in a 2005 episode of Drake and Josh. He continued to nab TV roles before being cast as Clay Norman on Saving Grace from 2007 until 2010.
“For me, it was very exciting, because I loved Drake and Josh when I was little,” Dylan told Rolling Stone in June 2020 of his debut acting job. “And so, that being my first job already was super fun, but then seeing me on Drake and Josh when I was eight was pretty mind-blowing.”
From there, his career continued to grow and as his popularity rose, fans went back and watched his earlier projects. After 13 Reasons Why premiered in 2017, eagle-eyed fans were quick to recall that Dylan played Ryan on an episode of Grey’s Anatomy, titled “Haunt You Every Day,” in 2007. In the episode, Dr. Mark Sloan (Eric Dane) operates on Dylan’s character to give him set of ears, in turn, allowing him to hear. Years later, the two actors reunited for a photo shared via Instagram. “Ears healed up nicely,” Eric captioned a selfie of himself alongside the now-adult Dylan.
While Dylan’s Grey’s Anatomy appearance came to a shock as some fans who only know him as an adult actor, that’s hardly the only role he had during the early days of his career. When Dylan appeared on Jimmy Kimmel Live in March 2018, the talk show host was quick to remind the actor that was also “Jack’s son on Lost” and “the president’s son, who got killed, on Scandal.”
He was also in Alexander and the Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Day and Goosebumps before playing Clay Jensen on 13 Reasons Why.
“As an actor, like I’ve always just thought … what you do for people, it’s sort of irrelevant, besides entertaining them. You’re not doing anything to, like, save anyone’s life or anything, you know?” Dylan explained to TheWrap in June 2018 when discussing the Netflix series. “It’s kind of given me a different outlook on the industry, on acting, on this art form as a whole. It’s like, wow, I really can bring change to people.”
He played the starring role on the fan-favorite series until it came to an end in June 2020. Check out all Dylan’s other roles over the years.
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