Dean Cain Sacrificed Career to Raise His Son Alone — The Actor’s Biological Dad Abandoned Him as a Kid

Dean Cain’s father left after he was born, so the actor swore to be a better dad when the time came. Once he became a dad, he sacrificed his career to raise his son, and today, they share an enviable bond.


While he would later become a renowned movie star, Dean Cain’s heart was not always in the business. He preferred professional football over gracing the silver screens.

However, a knee injury ended his sports career and thrust him into acting, landing his breakthrough role as Superman/Clark Kent in the 1993 “Lois & Clark: The New Adventures of Superman.”

He would later land various roles in “The Broken Hearts Club,” “Rat Race,” “Out of Time,” and “Bailey’s Billion$,” among many others.

He recalls playing sports with many celebrities of his age at the time, but many do not realize that the man who raised him was not his biological father.


Born Dean George Tanaka on July 31, 1966, in Mount Clemens, Michigan, the actor is the son of actress Sharon Tanaka and Roger Tanaka.

Christopher Cain and Dean Cain during “September Dawn” Los Angeles Screening – Arrivals at Director’s Guild of America in Los Angeles, California, United States. | Source: Getty Images

Unfortunately, his father, who had only been married to Sharon for two years between 1964 and 1966, abandoned the family. When Cain was 3, his mother married Director Christopher Cain, who adopted Cain and his brother, Roger.

Although he carried his name on his birth certificate, Cain never met his biological father. He later changed his surname to his adoptive father’s. He shared:

“My biological father is Japanese. I never knew him, never met him.”

Actor Dean Cain attends the 2022 Fandemic Tour at Georgia World Congress Center on March 19, 2022 in Atlanta, Georgia | Source: Getty Images

When Dean’s biological father separated from his mother, he also moved on

 and married Grace Southhard in 1982 and started a family. He, however, never got in contact with his boys.

Because of his experience with being abandoned by his biological dad, Cain swore to be a better father to his children once he started a family.


Like many actors, Cain had several whirlwind romances, majorly with actresses and models. In June 2000, he became a first-time dad with ex-girlfriend, Playboy Playmate, and Spanish model Samantha Torres.

Dean Cain and son Christopher at the 2004 Target A Time for Heroes Celebrity Carnival to benefit the Elizabeth Glaser Pediatric AIDS Foundation | Source: Getty Images

Cain named his son after his adoptive father, Christopher. And while he was ecstatic about becoming a father, his relationship with Torres took a hit, resulting in a nasty custody battle.

Determined to be the father he’d always promised he would be, the “Hit The Floor” actor fought tooth and nail for his son, finally assuming sole custody in 2011.

He adopted a hands-on approach to raising his son, telling ABC News that he’s always cooked his son’s meals because that’s the only way Christopher would eat. The actor shared:

“I cook every meal for my child. If I don’t cook, he doesn’t eat. I cook a very mean steak. I’m also very good at taking the nine leftovers I have and turning it into something.”

Cain is a more present dad than many actors, but that did not mean it was a walk in the park for him. He admitted that while the stability was good for Christopher, he struggled with balancing work and PTA meetings. In the end, he chose what was best for Christopher.



Christopher Dean Cain and Dean Cain attend the premiere of Open Road Films’ ‘The Promise’ on April 12, 2017 in Hollywood, California. | Source: Getty Images

Raising a child single-handedly has never been easy, and it was no different for Cain. Balancing his roles and coming home to cook for his son was a hard nut to crack, but he took it all in his stride.

His situation became more difficult because he juggled many professions. He already had a full plate between being a writer, producer, director, talk show host, and political analyst.

However, he would disclose that writing shows like “Ripley’s Believe It or Not” or episodes for “Lois & Clark: The New Adventures of Superman” came second to his son.

He turned down leading roles for the first 18 years of his son’s life, only resuming when Christopher graduated high school. He predicated his parenting technique on being a father first and an actor second.

Most of his fans did not understand how he could give up his career for his son. He, however, shared that he preferred taking on acting jobs that would end fast and allow him to return home and be with his son.

He wanted to be present for Christopher’s Jujitsu events and be his football, basketball, and baseball coach. He told Closer Weekly:

“I’m there. I’m a very present father, and I would never do it otherwise. I’m blessed to be able to have the ability to do so many different things and yet still be a father first.”


Cain and Christopher’s bond has been close since the now-young man was born, and it continues to grow by the day. The two are admirably tight, evident from Cain’s numerous Instagram photos on his account.

They often have lunch dates together, and Cain calls his son his favorite human. To spend more time together, Christopher accompanied Dean to Princeton, his alma mater, to get an idea about his father’s history.

Cain’s photos at different airport terminals also show that the two enjoy taking trips together and attending events like NASCAR. The two are always by each other’s side, enjoying each other’s company.

Cain even dropped his son off at High Point University in North Carolina, where he now attends college after graduating high school. The “Meant To Be” actor also shared how proud he was of his son for getting his driver’s license at 16.

In addition to enjoying his father’s company, Christopher loves spending time with his half-siblings, Torres’ twins, Elijah and Isabelle, who often drop by the house. Cain says:

“I’d do anything for those two. It can be defined as a broken home, but if you hang out at our house, that’s the last thing you’ll think.”

Cain feels he has done the best he could for his son and hopes Christopher is proud of him. He disclosed that hanging out with his son makes his days worthwhile. “My best day would be just to wake up, and me and my son have a great day at home.” He adds.


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