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Eric Winter's life and career in photos - from California childhood to Roselyn Sánchez romance and The Rookie role

 The actor currently stars as Tim Bradford in ABC's The Rookie 

Close up of Eric Winter smiling at the Monte Carlo TV Festival in 2023
Megan Bull
TV Writer
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Revered for his on-screen charisma and versatility, Eric Winter has established an impressive career with big-budget rom-coms and long-running TV series under his belt. As of 2024, the actor and producer is perhaps best known for his portrayal of Tim Bradford in The Rookie, but fans will also have spotted Eric in Days of Our Lives, The Ugly Truth and Witches of East End, to name a few.

From his early beginnings in La Mirada, California, to his fortuitous segway into acting, and Hollywood love story with actress, Roselyn Sánchez, we're taking a trip down memory lane. See how the star has evolved over the years…

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Born July 17, 1976, Eric was raised in La Mirada, California. While few details are known about his childhood, the 47-year-old holds great admiration for his mother, Gwen, and late father, Wayne, whom he regularly posts about on Instagram. 

Giving fans a glimpse of his teen years, in 2021, Eric shared this adorable photo on social media. "This is what happens when you go through old pics... probably took me 45 mins to blow dry my hair that perfectly... and just the right amount of aqua net, learned it from the man himself... miss ya dad #fbf," he penned in the caption.

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 Surprisingly, Eric hadn't intended to become an actor. In an interview with DA MAN, he explained: "I was actually a psycho-biology major and I wanted to be a doctor. While taking some drama classes as an elective, I started falling in love with the creative arts. 

"At first, it was something that was a bit of a sidetrack, and my family was confused because they were paying for me to go to college and become a doctor. In the end, I still graduated [from UCLA] and got my degree, but I think the curiosity of the arts is what turned the tables for me and made me want to explore that more." 

During this time, Eric also pursued modelling, landing high-profile campaigns for Tommy Hilfiger.

One of Eric's earliest on-screen roles was in Days of Our Lives. Cast as Rex Brady, the fledgling actor would appear in the popular soap opera from 2002 to 2005. 

Eric Winter as Rex Brady in  Days of Our Lives© Getty
Eric as Rex Brady in Days of Our Lives

Following his stint on the show, Eric next appeared in episodes of Love, Inc. (2005-2006) Brothers & Sisters (2007-2008) and The Mentalist (2010-2012).  

A little-known fact about Eric is that he was previously married to Coyote Ugly actress Allison Ford from 2001 to 2005. After meeting in 2000, the former couple were often spotted at red carpet events.

Eric Winter on the red carpet with Allison Ford in 2002© Getty
The actor was previously married to Allison Ford

Months after his divorce from Allison was finalized, Eric crossed paths with Puerto Rican singer-songwriter and actress, Roselyn Sánchez. The pair were first introduced at a party in LA, and three months later, Eric got the courage to ask her out on a date. 

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Two years later, he popped the question during a romantic kayak ride through a bioluminescent bay in Puerto Rico. "I was petrified she would drop the ring," he told InStyle. "It never left the box. She accepted; I shut the box and told her she could see it again on land."

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Roselyn and Eric tied the knot in November 2008, hosting an incredible four-day event with 250 guests in attendance. San Cristobal Fort in Old San Juan, Puerto Rico, served as their wedding venue, while Venezuelan designer Angel Sanchez created a beautiful princess dress for the bride. 

Eric Winter alongside Katherine Heigl in The Ugly Truth© Sky
Eric appeared opposite Katherine Heigl and Gerard Butler in The Ugly Truth

A year after his fairytale wedding, Eric landed one of the biggest roles in his career to date, appearing in The Ugly Truth alongside Hollywood heavyweights Katherine Heigl and Gerard Butler. 

Speaking to Daytime Dial, he said: "My relationship with Katie (Heigl) and Gerry (Butler) was a ton of fun. We just laughed a lot. It was another fun environment to be in. It was a huge opportunity. It was kind of a fun, vulgar romantic comedy — it changes up from the normal romantic-comedy pace that you're used to." 

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Eric is a proud father of two, having welcomed daughter Sebella in 2012 and son Dylan in 2017. Speaking to PEOPLE Magazine, Roselyn described her husband as very "hands-on" when it comes to their children. Eric also loves to post photos of Sebella and Dylan on his social media accounts. 

Eric Winter in The Rookie© ABC
Eric as Tim Bradford in The Rookie

In 2018, Eric signed on as Tim Bradford in The Rookie, a role which he continues to play. This is a role I had to fight for, and it was a tough role for me to get because it was so against type for me," he explained to DA MAN

"Thankfully, I was able to show everybody how versatile I am as an actor and knock it out of the park in the audition process. It was hard-earned."