Capable to deliver excellent performances in the contrasting genres of drama and comedy to frequently earn critics' praises, Dennis William Quaid surely is one versatile thespian people could always welcome warmly in cinemas. Raised in Houston, Texas from the day of he was born on April 9, 1954 as the second son of electrician William Rudy Quaid and real-estate agent Juanita Bonniedale Jordan, the actor has flourished an interest in acting since he was still a student at the state's Bellaire High School where he was actively involved in some of its stage productions. Kept sticking to this branch of performing arts when entering University of Houston after his graduation in 1972, his fondness for the field became so great that he finally decided to quit his study to follow the trail of his older brother, Randy Quaid, who at that time had already developed a growing career in Hollywood.
Boldly left his hometown to head for Los Angeles at age 20, Dennis initially encountered difficulty in finding proper work since he only managed to gain a bit part in "Crazy Mama" (1975) while his next performance in "The Missouri Breaks" (1976) was mercilessly edited out of final feature, much to his dismal. Fortunately, things turned better after the dark-haired guy landed a supporting role in James Bridges' "September 30, 1955" (1977) as other roles quickly followed, most notably that in "Breaking Away" (1979). Delivering a stunning portrayal of frustrated Mid-western teenager Mike, he delightfully found himself being showered with critics' huge praise to soon garner widespread attention from both U.S audience and Hollywood which surely gave large contribution in paving his way to strive further in the mainstream film industry.
Determined to make use the opportunity for his full advantage, Dennis carefully chose the roles he considered fine enough to create an impressive resume and delightfully succeeded in doing so for he kept receiving critical acclaim through his enactments in "The Long Riders" (1980), "The Right Stuff" (1983), "Enemy Mine" (1985), "The Big Easy" (1987), plus "Great Balls of Fire!" (1989). Sadly, the bright shine gradually faded away upon entering the '90s none other because of his addiction to cocaine which ultimately forced him to take a two-year self-imposed hiatus from acting to conduct a treatment for substance abuse. The return to the industry was indeed such a rocky way to undergo as he distressingly stumbled over panned flicks before brought back the glow to his star with several stellar performances in "Wyatt Earp" (1994), "Something to Talk About" (1995), and "Dragonheart" (1996).
Also struck high in his subsequent projects of "The Parent Trap" (1998) and "Any Given Sunday" (1999), Dennis went steadier by the turn of the third millennium through a series of well-known big screen productions he was cast in, including "Traffic" (2000) alongside Benicio Del Toro, Catherine Zeta-Jones, and Don Cheadle, also "The Rookie" (2002) opposite Rachel Griffiths. However, it was his next movie, "Far from Heaven" (2002), that really rose his career several notch higher when it directed him to secure both Golden Globes and Screen Actors nominations in the Supporting Role category a year later, enabling him to land more roles in high-profile movies. Afterwards being seen in Roland Emmerich's smash box office hit of "The Day after Tomorrow" (2004), he continued walking his path smoothly, appearing in "Yours, Mine and Ours" and "American Dreamz" in 2005 and 2006, respectively.
By the following year, Dennis has wonderfully risen as presumably one of the busiest actors in Hollywood if looking on his hectic schedule for years ahead. Not only landed major part in Pete Travis' thriller drama "Vantage Point," he also received billings in "Smart People" and "The Horsemen," all three slated to come up in 2008. The same year would likely see him appear in drama musical "Shame on You" and Gary Fleder-directed biopic "The Express" as well as hear his voice in animated feature "Terra" alongside the likes of Evan Rachel Wood, Ron Perlman, Luke Wilson, and Amanda Peet, among others.
Taking a glance into his love life, Dennis was first married to actress P.J. Soles in 1978 shortly after their meeting in the set of "Our Winning Season" (1978), but their knot only lasted less than 6 years for the twosome in the end decided to split in 1983. He then dated his "Jaws 3-D" (1983) co-star, Lea Thompson, to later live together with her for 4 years before fell into the arms of Meg Ryan and married her on February 14, 1991. Sadly, this did not last long enough either as he eventually filed for divorce by July 12, 2000 following Ryan's affair with Russell Crowe though they already had a son, Jack Henry, whom she delivered on April 24, 1992. Officially became single again on June 16, 2001, the actor once more flourished a new love to a Texas-based real-estate manager named Kimberly Buffington, who is 18 years his junior, to finally hold his third marriage on July 4, 2004 in Montana.
Waiting for over three years, Dennis and Buffington eventually could embrace their twin children via a surrogate mother on November 8, 2007. Son Thomas Boone was born first at 8:26 AM and weighed 6 pounds, 12 ounces, whereas daughter Zoe Grace made her appearance two minutes later weighing in at 5 pounds, 9 ounces. Their happiness, however, was marred when a hospital staff mistakenly gave the babies 1,000 times the proper dosage of heparin, which reportedly caused them to be in a very critical condition for a while, though the two later got fully recovered. Following this incident, the couple then filed a lawsuit against the drug manufacturer, Baxter Healthcare, claiming the company was negligent in packaging different doses of its 10-unit and 10,000-unit heparin, producing similar vials with blue backgrounds instead.