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John Schneider Gets Down 'n' Dirty as Port Star on "Nip/Tuck" / TV's "First Openly Gay Judge" Dreams of Being Broadway Belter

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John Schneider, porn star? Say it ain't so! Yep, the former "Smallville" regular, who played Superman's dad for the last six years, says he may be leaving his wholesome image behind for good when he pops up on the new season of "Nip/Tuck" as former porn star Ram Peters. Oh no they di'n't!

"Oh yes they did," says Schneider with a laugh. The handsome blond plays Amanda Bynes' father in "Sidney White," the Morgan Creek comedy opening Sept. 21, but says now, "I don't know if 'Nip/Tuck' will put an end to people wanting me to play the dad or what. Believe it or not, they're bringing me on to spice up the show — as if it needed spicing up." He reveals that Ram Peters is a part of wild child Kimber McNamara's (Kelly Carlson) past. "Kimber used to do porn, and I'm playing a guy she used to work with. But now I own the company that makes the porn, and when people need money, they come to me."

Schneider says he was actively looking for a change of face because he felt he'd fallen into a rut the last decade. "It was a delightful rut but a rut nevertheless," he says, adding, "but now the rut ends with perhaps the best work I've ever been part of, 'Nip/Tuck' and 'Sidney White.'" He says of his young costar in the latter modern-day retelling of "Snow White and the Seven Dwarves," "Amanda is a breath of fresh air in an otherwise completely screwed up populace. She's got great parents, and it's great to see someone who has her head firmly planted on her shoulders do so well. The movie's hysterical. Amanda's great. All of her seven dorks are very, very funny."

Meanwhile, Schneider's first foray into filmmaking, "Collier and Co.: Hot Pursuit," has pre-sold some 60,000 units for its DVD release Tuesday (9/18). "I'm very proud of this," says Schneider, who wrote, produced, directed and starred in the down home comedy he says took 24 years to bring to the screen. A sequel is a definite possibility, he says.

THE SINGING JUDGE: TV's newest judge, David Young, considers the TV courtroom just his first stop. Next stop — Broadway? "I want to get a contract so I can play Mama Rose in Gypsy on Broadway," says Young, who's being touted as the first openly gay judge with a daytime courtroom television show. "Patti LuPone was outstanding. Maybe she wants a replacement. I'll be her understudy," he adds before belting out "Everything's Coming Up Roses."

Did we mention that he said working with Sony Entertainment was Supercalifragilisticexpialidocious?

Yep, he's gay, all right, and proud of it, and he wants others to be proud too.

"I want to be a role model. I want to be a spokesman for young, gay men and lesbian women to show them they can make it. When you see the number of gay and lesbian teenage suicide, it just makes you want to cry. It shouldn't happen."

When asked if he's worried about being accepted or not by the American public due to any homophobia, Young responds, "I don't think it's going to be an issue. People basically don't care if you're gay, straight or bi. They want to be entertained. They want a judge they can respect and look up to. I think people will want to tune in because it will be so entertaining, and educational, and fun. My style is a bit unorthodox, but I get wonderful results."

EXPANDING HORIZONS: Rising teen star Josh Hutcherson, who's already shown tremendous acting chops in the kid-friendly flicks "Zathura," "Bridge to Terabithia" and "Firehouse Dog," feels he's making his way into more mature fare with the forthcoming film "Winged Creatures" — which has a tremendous cast, including Forest Whitaker, Kate Beckinsale, Dakota Fanning, Jackie Earle Haley and Jennifer Hudson. "It's definitely a step in that direction," says the 14-year-old. "It's about a random diner shooting and how people's lives are affected by post-traumatic stress afterwards. My character's name is Jimmy, and he's a fun, outgoing person. But then the shooting happens, and he completely closes himself off from the world. He doesn't talk anymore. He has all this kind of suppressed anger and rage inside of him, and then toward the end of the movie, he kind of lets it all out."

WHAT A RUSH: "Cold Case" star Kathryn Morris has gained an unusual perspective on the world since heading out to promote the CBS series, in which she plays Detective Lilly Rush, in other lands during her hiatus. "I was in Japan, and coming from the Japanese society's point of view, they respect Lilly because she is very emotionally available and she is a hard worker and working with men as if she is a peer. And they worry about what is going to happen to her psychologically." On the other hand, she says, "In France, they like the details about Lilly's clothes, makeup and hair. The French, you know, they hope that Lilly finds a love, that she takes the time for love and food. They want to see her at a cafe. Maybe they've got something."

(With reports by Stephanie DuBois and Emily Feimster.)

To find out more about Marilyn Beck and Stacy Jenel Smith and read their past columns, visit the Creators Syndicate web page at www.creators.com.

COPYRIGHT 2007 MARILYN BECK AND STACY JENEL SMITH

DISTRIBUTED BY CREATORS SYNDICATE, INC.



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