John:  I don’t know, man.  I’ve been involved in restaurants for the last decade, so I probably would have worked in a restaurant – been a bartender or a waiter or something like that.

What’s this about an album?

John:  Yeah, I got a country record deal in Nashville, and I’ve been recording.  How about that?  I’m going back in October for a month to finish it up.  We don’t have a name yet for it – I’m still trying to figure out if I just want to call it “Corbett.”

How about “The Housesitter?”
(laughs)

Or “Exposed?”
(more laughs).

You’ve spoken openly about your faith in the past.  Where are you right now in terms of your faith and spiritual journey?

John:  You know it’s tough, man.  TV preachers are bringing me down … but me and the Lord are on good terms.  I travel a lot.  There’s a little Catholic church that I go to once in awhile, but I haven’t found a church that I like to go to.  Church bums me out, too.  I just read the Bible and pray.

“Raise Your Voice” has something really positive to say to young girls, but the work you did in “Northern Exposure” was also exceptional – it was a great program.  Everyone was just super on that show.

John:  Thanks.  It’s on the Hallmark Channel now.  I was flipping through the channels one night, didn’t know it was on, and caught [the very first episode,] so I decided to watch.  And man, when it was over, I felt really blessed and lucky, that that came to me, you know?  That changed me life.  [Tears appear in eyes.]  And there are definitely some similarities in the characters.  If you followed Chris from then to now, he could have ended up as Mr. Torvald, for sure.

What was it about the show that changed your life?

John:  I had been acting for about three years, with only one credit, “The Wonder Years,” and I was at the end of it. I’d flown to Hollywood, and nothing had happened in three years, and I was tired of it.  I was going to housesit on Bainbridge Island for the summer of 1990, for some family friends. I was going to go out there and just rethink everything, and I was pretty sure I was not going to come back to L.A. and try to act.  I was 27 but in my acting classes, I was with 40-year-old guys who had been doing it – trying to be an actor – for 15 years, and nothing was happening.  I didn’t want to be one of those guys. 

Two weeks before I was to leave, I got the audition for “Northern Exposure” and I had to call those guys and say, “Well, I got good news and bad news.  I’m coming to Seattle but I can’t live on your island.”  I don’t know what would have happened if I hadn’t.  It opened the world up to me.  From that show, I became a friend of the world, you know?  Just everywhere I’ve gone in my life, people have been as nice and as friendly as you guys – wherever I go, anyway, even getting gas.  A guy will come up to me and say that it was his favorite show.  It’s been like a light, walking around the world. 


New Line Cinema's "Raise Your Voice," starring Hilary Duff, John Corbett, Ashlee Simpson, Jason Ritter and Rita Wilson, releases in theaters nationwide on Friday, October 8, 2004.