James Wolk Loving Those Clooney Comparisons

James Wolk Fox photo by Joe Viles

Twenty-five-year-old actor James Wolk  can’t help but smile over the fact that he’s been likened to George Clooney.  “Are you kidding?  I’ll take that any day,” says the star of Fox’s forthcoming “Lone Star” series.

The handsome Wolk is actually younger than his con man character was originally written for the much-touted new show.  He tells us that his concern was “playing someone 10-15 years older than I am over a period of years, which could happen with a series.”  Once he went in to read for the role of Robert/Bob – who has two fraudulent lives complete with a wife in one and a girlfriend in the other – the series’ producers decided to rewrite his character as a younger man, which Wolk also can’t help smiling about.

Wolk tells us that while he was exploring how to go about playing his character, a friend suggested to him that he could be a “sweet” con man.  “You use whatever you have” in the confidence game, he points out.  And if that happens to include a sweet vibe, well, work it.  Wolk assures us, however, he really is nicer than Robert/Bob, who “feels guilty about some of the things he does, but does them anyway.”

Candace Silvers

STILL FUNNY:  With CBS Video releasing the first season of Phil Silvers’ classic “Sgt. Bilko” series on DVD this week, his acting coach daughter Candace has been spending a lot of time thinking back on the late, great comic and what made his fast-talking comedy so special.

“I’m so glad that his genius is going to touch a whole new generation,” she says.  “I’ve been teaching for 25 years.  I’ve taught people who’ve been up for Oscars and Emmys.  And I really believe, in a way, I’ve been extrapolating what he did.  He would fall into an action instead of thinking it through his mind”   The same dynamic was in play for Phil’s famous ad-libs.  Candace recalls that series creator Nat Hiken would lay out scripts in which “’So and so says this, so and so says that, and then Phil says something funny here.’”

Silvers herself couldn’t be much busier, and that’s the way she likes it.  The beautiful, young-looking mother of four and grandmother of one has a book coming out next year and three movies in the works — in addition to teaching at her Candace Silvers Studio.

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