The reluctant Brat Packer, McCarthy played adrift Georgetown University grad Kevin in St. Elmo’s Fire—and then rich, popular high school senior Blane, who falls for Molly Ringwald’s adorable, intelligent and outcast-because-she’s-not-rich-and-makes-her-own-clothes Andie, in Pretty and Pink.
(Actually, in the New York article, Emilio Estevez, Rob Lowe and Judd Nelson were the Brat Pack guys, and an unidentified co-star in St. Elmo’s Fire predicted that McCarthy wouldn’t make it as an actor for the long haul. “The Brat Packers save their praise for themselves,” the author wrote.)
Right after that it was onto playing a window dresser whose muse comes to life in Mannequin and playing a disaffected college student in Less Than Zero (also with Robert Downey Jr. and Pretty in Pink co-star James Spader, both considered Brat Pack-adjacent), but it’s Weekend at Bernie‘s that’s watched and rewatched endlessly on cable to this day.
McCarthy’s film highlights after the 1980s included The Joy Luck Club and Mulholland Falls, and he was a star of numerous TV shows that only lasted one season, such as Lipstick Jungle with Brooke Shields. But he also leaned into theater (he was starring in Long Day’s Journey Into Night with Ellen Burstyn when he told People that the Brat Pack wasn’t a real thing) and has become a busy TV director, working on Orange Is the New Black, The Blacklist, Gossip Girl and more.
He is also, fun fact, an award-winning travel writer—so if you see the “Andrew McCarthy” byline in The New York Times, Travel + Leisure or Bon Appetit, that’s the same guy—and he authored a YA novel, Just Fly Away, that came out in 2017.
McCarthy has a son from his first marriage to college sweetheart Carol Schneider, and a daughter with his wife since 2011, Dolores Rice.