Jesse McCartney out to shock fans with new TV role

Fri Nov 7, 2008 4:53pm EST
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By Sue Zeidler

LOS ANGELES (Reuters) - Former teen music idol Jesse McCartney is shaking off his family friendly image and giving audiences a glimpse of a new, darker side next week playing a murder suspect on TV crime drama "Law and Order: SVU."

"I have a good feeling about this role. People will be shocked by what they see," said the 21-year-old McCartney, who first stepped into Hollywood's limelight at age 12 when he joined boy band Dream Street.

Four years later, McCartney launched his a solo career, becoming a household name and teen idol with his debut album, "Beautiful Soul," which sold over 1.5 million copies. That was followed by 2006 release "Right Where You Want Me."

Along the way, McCartney has been acting, too. Growing up, he appeared on daytime soap opera "All My Children," had a part in 2004 TV series "Summerland" and recently was the voice of Theodore in 2007 family movie, "Alvin and the Chipmunks."

But now, the New York-born McCartney is expanding into more adult fare. This past May, he released an R&B-flavored album named "Departure," his third with Disney's Hollywood Records, which he says reveals his maturity as a singer.

"It's a big jump from anything I've done musically," said McCartney who has no fears about alienating his fan base with his new choices.

"They've all grown up with me at this point. This is the road that I'm on right now and it's the road that I believe they (his fans) will join with me," McCartney told Reuters.

CHILD STAR TO ADULT   Continued...

<p>Actor Jesse McCartney poses for a portrait in West Hollywood, California, November 5, 2008. REUTERS/Mario Anzuoni</p>