John C. McGinley

John C. McGinley


8/3/1959, New York, New York

Birth Name

John Christopher McGinley


  • John C. McGinley of Scrubs.
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489 votes


John C. McGinley, a tall, wire-haired performer of stage and screen usually in officious supporting roles. After receiving his MFA from NYU's Tisch School of the Arts, McGinley was immediatly cast as an understudy for John Patrick Shanley's Danny and the Deep Blue Sea and appeared in the…more


Trivia and Quotes

  • Trivia

    • John C. McGinley is a well-known as a member of the Malibu Mob which is a group of celebrity friends and neighbors

    • John C. McGinley's character Perry Cox's habit of touching the nose is a tribute to Paul Newman's character in The Sting.

    • John C. McGinley is sometimes credited as John McGinley and as Johnny C.

    • During the NFL season of 2007, John C. McGinley played the "Commish" of the More Taste League commercials for Miller Lite.

    • In 2008, Lauren Lambert, John C. McGinley's ex-wife, filed a legal suite against him for not giving her child support payments.

    • John C. McGinley voices the character Fred in the video game, Dead Head Fred.

    • John C. McGinley grew up a Rangers fan in New York, but switched his allegiance to the Wings in 1999, after his Malibu neighbor Chelios was transferred from Chicago to Detroit.

    • When he was 20 years old, John C. McGinley was a ball spotter at the 1980 U.S. Open.

    • During the 1990s, John C. McGinley appeared in an average of 3 movies per year, which was intense work for the actor.

    • The first university John C. McGinley studied acting at was Syracuse University.

    • When John C. McGinley was growing up in Millburn, NJ, he was more involved in sports than theatre.

    • The cast and crew of Office Space said that John C. McGinley was intimidating to work with, which contributed to the character he played.

    • On the special edition DVD of Office Space, writer/director Mike Judge and the cast reveal that John C. McGinley improvised much of his character's praise of Michael Bolton.

    • John C. McGinley's brother, Mark McGinley, was working in the World Trade Center on 9/11 and fortunately managed to make it out of the building before it collapsed.

    • John C. McGinley has a mild form of dyslexia.

    • In October 2002 John C. McGinley was chosen as "Dad of the Month" at

    • John C. McGinley enjoys surfing, weightlifting and softball.

    • John C. McGinley calls Oliver Stone his favorite director to work with, and has accordingly been cast in his films six times, more than any actor except Sean Stone, the director's son

    • John C. McGinley was the understudy for John Turturro in the off-Broadway play Danny and the Deep Blue Sea early in his career.

    • McGinley appeared in a TV commercial for the PGA Champions Tour 2006.

    • The first film John C. McGinley was ever in was Sweet Liberty.

    • John C. McGinley got his big break as a leading character in the film Platoon, directed by Oliver Stone.

    • McGinley lost seventy pounds for the film Highway.

    • McGinley has had a role in a total of six off-Broadway plays and one Broadway play.

    • John C. McGinley was in a 1986 Subaru commercial.

    • McGinley was a good friend of NHL defense-man Chris Chelios and can often be seen on Scrubs wearing a Chelios hockey jersey or T-shirt of Chelios' chain of restaurants, "Cheli's Chili".

    • He was on a celebrity version of American Gladiators.

    • McGinley has a brother who is also an actor, Ted McGinley.

    • John C. McGinley married a yoga teacher. Her name is Nicole Kessler.

    • Neil Flynn originally wanted to be Dr. Cox, but John C. McGinley had a better rehearsal, thus Neil Flynn becoming The Janitor on the show.

    • While starring in Scrubs, John appeared in 3 public service announcements for NBC's The More You Know. His topics were tolerance, family time, and prejudice.

    • He compares his character on Scrubs Doctor Cox to Danny Devito in Taxi and to Ed Asner in Mary Tyler Moore.

    • In 1997 John appeared in Fox's highest-rated mini series ever, Intensity.

    • He has appeared in two films with his good friend John Cusack: Identity and The Jack Bull.

    • John C. McGinley married a production assistant that he met on the set of the movie Nothing To Lose. Her name is Lauren Lambert. However, they are now divorced.

    • John C. McGinley had to audition five times for his role on Scrubs.

    • His nickname is Johnny C.

    • In May 2005, John C. McGinley was invited to deliver the keynote address at the commencement ceremony for the University of California San Francisco's School of Medicine,

    • John C. McGinley has produced several movies including Colin Fitz and Watch It!

    • John C. McGinley received a masters of fine arts degree from New York University Theater Program.

    • John C. McGinley co-owned a restaurant with fellow Platoon co-star, William Dafoe. The restaurant is called "Match" and is located in New York City.

    • John C. McGinley is currently the national spokesperson for the National Down Syndrome Society's annual Buddy Walks.

    • John C. McGinley is committed to building awareness and acceptance of people with Down syndrome since his son Max has Down syndrome.

    • John C. McGinley often says that Joseph Papp is one of the most infulential people behind his carrer.

    • John C. McGinley has been in more then 60 feature films.

    • John C. McGinley and Oliver Stone collaborated on many films including: Platoon, Wall Street, Talk Radio, Born on the Fourth of July, Nixon and Any Given Sunday.

    • Platoon was John C. McGinley's first film.

    • John C. McGinley was on the celebrity version of the TV show American Gladiator in 1989.

    • On Scrubs, his character Dr. Cox's has a habit of referring to J.D. (Zach Braff) by girls' names. This was put into the show after the writers noticed John McGinley was doing it to Braff. He says he does this to all of his friends.

    • John C. McGinley lives in a four-bedroom beachside home in Malibu, California, which is close to where he works at for 'Scrubs'.

    • John C. McGinley was raised in Millburn, New Jersey.

    • John C. McGinley is 6 feet 2 inches tall.

    • His first acting job was in the TV series Another World where he played Ned from 1985 to 1986.

    • While on the Scrubs set John C McGinley is very vocal about how much he hates the dogs that are allowed on the set.

    • He is a good friend of John Cusack.

    • His son, Max, born in 1997 has Down's Syndrome. John took his TV role in Scrubs so he could stay close to home to be with him.

    • Spokesperson for the National Down Syndrome Annual Buddy Walk (2003)

    • Favorite TV show is The West Wing and is a great admirer of the late John Spencer.

    • The role of Perry Cox on Scrubs was written with a John C. McGinley type actor in mind.

    • Has the reputation of playing "rough and tough" characters, both on the big screen and in some of his television roles.

    • McGinley was nominated for a Golden Satellite Award in 2003 in the catagory of Best Performance by an Actor in a Series, Comedy or Musical for: Scrubs.

    • McGinley was nominated for a Television Critics Association Award in 2002 for Individual Achievement in Comedy for: Scrubs.

    • John McGinley was featured in The Men's Health Muscle magazine for the fourth quarter of 2004 on page 60.

  • Quotes

    • John C. McGinley: (about the Buddy Walk website) If you get on that Web site, you're going to find out you're not alone. You're not from Mars, you didn't do anything wrong, you've been blessed with a gift and you have a chance to bring up a child who's going to be just a stunning, stunning person here.

    • John C. McGinley: You go to the hospital your wife's in labor and you're doing the thing, and then it's very disorienting and scary and you beat yourself up and you go through a whole period of 'woe is me' and then you realize that this a gift, this child is the light, and if you can nourish that light and just let it shine, you have an opportunity to get closer to what I think is God.

    • John C. McGinley: (about his son Max) Is he going to be a brain surgeon? Probably not. But you want to foster an environment and a landscape where he can excel and do whatever he can do. What a wonderful thing to be able to say, that a child got a chance to do what he or she was able to do.

    • John C. McGinley: (about the Buddy Walk) It's a day of inclusion and empowerment, and it's a day we like to celebrate people's abilities and not their disabilities. And so it's--it's really about lifting up families and children with special needs.

    • John C. McGinley: (about how he first met his wife, Nicole kessler) My son walked up to Nicole on the beach and I was throwing the ball for the dogs in the ocean. I was like, 'Max, you get the dogs. I'll talk to the hot blondes.'

    • John C. McGinley: (about reaching the 100th episode of Scrubs) For this to reach 100, it does feel like all of a sudden. When we're doing this thing, its like "you put your head down" and just go. You just keep trying to move that rock uphill. And before you know it, we reach 100.

    • John C. McGinley: I knew I wanted to play "Dr Cox" really bad, which is always a huge mistake because as soon as you want something really bad, maybe you rip up a little bit.

    • John C. McGinley: (on his character "Dr Cox") He's a big collection of damaged, eccentric goods.

    • John C. McGinley: (about auditioning for the role of Dr Cox) I like to be in waiting rooms with people as they're auditioning, because their terror calms me.

    • John C. McGinley (on why his character on Scrubs hates Hugh Jackman) I think it's because the creator of the show just can't stand how talented he is. Hugh Jackman is just too talented. For him to have won a Tony, he's Wolverine, and he's deadly good-looking. He's a great athlete, he can sing and he can dance. That's too much for Billy (Lawrence) to process.

    • John C. McGinley: (on whether he envisioned his character on Scrubs, any differently than the creators) I did feel Dr. Cox, the character that I was auditioning for, was too similar to the head of the hospital. He was too arrogant and mean. I approached him kind of like I had a miniature Max sitting on my shoulder. I pictured Max saying, "This guy has got to give love every once in a while. He has to!" I knew there had to be tiny little windows of redemption.

    • John C. McGinley: (on why he wanted to play Dr Cox) I felt (a) it was a great role and (b) I wanted to stay in town. I wanted to stop going to these four month and five month gigs up in Toronto or Montreal or Vancouver or down in Mexico. I wanted to be around my son, Max. This came along and I was like, "I really want to play this guy!"

    • John C. McGinley: (about his character, Dr Cox, on Scrubs) He is this tower...this tower of inadequacy and damage, but he is so morally in the right place. He really wants to be a caregiver, he wants to make these kids responsible for saving lives and there is no middle ground. So he gets to be this mix of babysitter, mentor, teacher and dad. They made me audition about six times–everyone wanted to play this guy. It is a very desirable role.

    • John C. McGinley: I would love to have a photographic memory. It would come in handy with the rants I'm given on Scrubs... often on short notice!

    • John C. McGinley: (On his co-star, Ken Jenkins) Ken I just… you know, I couldn't believe that they got a guy who was one of the founding members of Louisville Rep. Had done all, what, 36 of the Shakespeare plays. He's been in more movies than I have. If you him or put him on your Tivo it's gonna ruin your Tivo. He's this gentle, gentle pro. Kenny's got the most gentle vibe. I don't know. I just couldn't believe they got that guy.

    • John C. McGinley: Dr. Cox mentors the rookie doctors with a spoonful of dirt and then a cup of sugar. I see him as an archetypal descendent of two of my favorite curmudgeonly characters: Lou Grant and Louie De Palma.

    • John C. McGinley: As an actor, it's great to play a strong leader with a heart of gold.

    • John C. McGinley:The [Scrubs] pilot script's notes described the character as a John C. McGinley-type.' Now, I don't know what that type is, but I said, Well, you've got him.' I still had to audition five times for the network."

    • John C. McGinley(On why he thinks he never landed a role as a TV series regular until Scrubs): With my dorky head, I guess I just wasn't handsome enough. I'd do the audition but never hear back. TV tends to look for the living equivalents of squeaky-clean Kens and Barbies, but with my dial I'm more like Ken's dirty old uncle.

    • John C. McGinley (On how he memorizes lines for Scrubs): I go downstairs and don't come up from there until I get that stuff hammered in my skull, until I can do it water skiing or jumping out of a plane. It's all about the text, flushing it out, to excavate, to really get in there and see what falls through your fingers.

  • dr.cox is amazing, the show wouldnt be the same with out him

    Everytime i watch beloved scrubs, I look forward to seeing dr.cox he is truly a unique character. many people label him as a jerk, but deep down he is sensitive and caring. you just have to understand how he shows his love before you judge him. Dr.cox's relationship with JD is a key component to JDs growth through out the whole show. JD needed him, and even though dr.cox seems like a jerk to JD actually he was helping him grow, if Dr.cox had been a whiny cry as* then JD would have never figured out anything on his own. Vote Dr.coxmoreless
  • John C McGinley is the best!

    John C. McGinley is one of the most talented actors. In Scrubs he's a lot of peoples favorite actor because he's so funny and talented. John C. McGinley or as many people know him ''Dr. Cox'' can make you laugh by just making a face, or by calling people girls names. Anyways John C. McGinley is outstanding in comedy but one of the best in dramatic. I know your probably wondering what I'm talking about but in the episode of Scrubs called ''My Screw Up'' he plays a dramatic part so beautifully. If your a fan of McGinley and haven't seen the episode ''My Screw Up'' you should watch it. Also Scrubs will be in its last season. : ( I'll be so sad to see it go, but I seriously think John C. McGinley and Zach Braff should be on a show together again.moreless