By Erick Johnson
Who's going to emerge from the class of Fall 2003 as a bona fide celebrity? We're talking about the new television season, of course -- which is offering something old (as in lotsa retread concepts and familiar faces), something new (Sharon $!@#!! Osbourne in a talk show?), something borrowed (we know "CSI" is a hit, but more than a half dozen crime procedurals this year is a tad much) and something blue (Fox's "Skin" takes us into the porn industry).
For starters, you can bank on already-well-knowns Carla Gugino and Josh Duhamel to kick their stardom up several notches with their respective series, ABC's "Karen Sisco" and NBC's "Las Vegas."
The former has Carla -- a.k.a. the sexy mom in the "Spy Kids" movies -- in the role J.Lo played in "Out of Sight" on the big screen, a federal marshall attracted against her will to bad boys. There's been a buzz about this show for months, and it's only increased since shooting began in Miami this summer.
Duhamel, co-starring in the soapy "Las Vegas" crime procedural led by James Caan, is on the stardom track whether or not the show succeeds. He's the title character of DreamWorks Pictures' "Win a Date with Tad Hamilton!!!" -- with Kate Bosworth
and Topher Grace also top-lining -- due next year.
Also kicking it up on the stardom scale is Anthony Anderson. His "All About the Andersons" on the WB will boost his recognition factor into a new realm. His role in the forthcoming "Scary Movie 3" won't hurt, either.
In the fabulous crime fighting babes arena, Kathryn Morris, who's been around enough ("Minority Report") to be a familiar face -- is now about to break through BIG as the star of Jerry Bruckheimer's latest crime procedural, CBS's "Cold Case."
Sexy Model cum actress Molly Sims will be watched aplenty on "Las Vegas."
Pauley Perette of CBS's "JAG" spin-off, "Navy NCIS" offers a change of pace from the rest of the TV crop -- and from the squeaky, clean appeal of the show's star, former Sexiest Man Alive, Mark Harmon. (Thanks to this show and the big screen "Freaky Friday," he's having a career resurgence, in case you hadn't noticed.) Perette plays a forensic scientist with a taste for goth attire and tattoos, and spouts appropriate head-banger dialogue.
David Sutcliffe and Travis Fimmel have the Hunk-o-Meter going off the scale this fall.
Fimmel's the latest "Tarzan" -- as in the WB series set in that other jungle, New York City. He doesn't say much, but, looking like he's just stepped off the cover of a bodice-ripping romance novel, he doesn't have to.
David Sutcliffe, meanwhile, plays the average Joe nice-guy teacher who winds up as the bemused main squeeze of a superstar in ABC's "I'm With Her," with Teri Polo (she's had secondary roles in such flicks as "Meet the Parents" and "Domestic Disturbance") as the movie star beloved by paparazzi and public alike.
Also playing with fame -- newbie Duane Martin has the task of portraying the TV entertainment reporter whose home life is inspired by that of producers Will and Jada Pinkett Smith in UPN's "All of Us." How Will-like will Martin's Robert James be as he deals with son, ex-wife, and fiance?
Tyler Francavilla of NBC's "Happy Family" has the market cornered on playing that hopeless loser you can't help finding amusing. He's holding his own with Christine Baranski and John Larroquette as his highly disappointed parents, who find that his graduation from junior college was a sham.
Benajmin McKenzie of "The O.C." is already developing a following.
Fox's "Skin," due in October, is bound to gain followings for the highly watchable sizzlers D.J. Cotrona and Olivia Wilde.
Also look out for Elizabeth Regen, who plays the street-talking white chick girlfriend of Whoopi Goldberg's brother on NBC's "Whoopi."
Amber Tamblyn of "Joan of Arcadia" has the chops to join the ranks of teen actor faves, say critics. And add Angus T. Jones to the list of kid stars coming up, thanks to his role as Charlie Sheen's nephew/Jon Cryer's son in CBS's soon due "Two and a Half Men" comedy.