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Perez Hilton to play Danny Tanner in 'funny and fabulous' Full House musical

06/24/2015 06:00 EDT | Updated 06/24/2016 05:59 EDT
Superstar blogger Perez Hilton is a well-known purveyor of celebrity gossip, but he is about to give up the flicker of his screen for the glow of the limelight. And a pair of 1980s loafers, perhaps.

Hilton—whose real name is Mario Lavandeira, Jr.—will play famously un-hip TV dad Danny Tanner in a new, unauthorized stage parody called Full House: the Musical, based on the popular series that ran from 1987-1995.

"I always laugh and pinch myself at the fact that I've become a celebrity just by talking about celebrities," he told CBC News. "I think I've now become more than just a blogger. I like to think of myself as an entertainer."

While it may seem like a departure to some, the role actually isn't much of a stretch for the web maven who studied acting at New York University's prestigious Tisch School of the Arts.

He's also been working with a vocal coach for the past three years.

"Now I can tell my mom, 'Look! Now I'm putting my degree to good use!'" he quipped. "It's a nice full circle moment all these years later."

An over-the-top Full House

Because it's a work of satire, producers have free reign to push their version of the Full House story to its limits—and they plan to.

Hilton will not only portray the fictional widowed father, but also the role of real-life Bob Saget, the actor who originally played Danny.

The plot will centre on Danny's swift descent into madness as he loses his signature ability to give "dad speeches".

"It's twisted, it's silly, it's dark, it's super funny, it's over-the-top," explained Hilton. "It's really funny and fabulous at the same time. Funny and fabulous. I love it!"

Hilton doesn't know whether or not Saget is aware of the project, but he does have the support of another Full House alum, his friend John Stamos, who played Uncle Jesse in the original series.

"I emailed [Stamos] saying 'I just want to give you a heads up that I'm doing this and I hope you're not mad,'" Hilton said, laughing. "And he wasn't. He was like, 'Oh, that sounds so fun and I'm so happy for you.'"

The musical parody is from the minds of writer-director team Tobly and Bob McSmith, the same duo behind similar spoofs like Bayside: the Musical, a spin on the sitcom Saved By the Bell, as well as Showgirls: the Musical, inspired by the 1995 classic cult film starring Elizabeth Berkley.

Once Hilton heard that Full House was getting the McSmith treatment, he contacted them right away.

"One of the creators was like 'Is Perez serious?' I'm like 'Yes, I'm very serious. I need to be involved!'"

Turning the gossip tables

Now that rehearsals are just two weeks away, Hilton plans to dive into Full House "bootcamp viewing" and can't wait to start learning the material.

"There's a lot of trust here because I didn't audition and I also agreed to do it without reading anything," he said. "I didn't read a script, I didn't read any songs."

As someone who has made his career off gossiping about other people, Hilton is prepared for people to be talking about him as he steps into centre stage.

"Thankfully, I as a person have grown, evolved, and matured. I'm fun and opinionated without being mean and hurtful. But a lot of people are mean and hurtful but it doesn't bother me. I'd rather have people be tweeting me or leaving comments on my Facebook that are negative than not tweeting me or leaving no comments at all," he said. "I don't take it too serious."

Full House: the Musical will premiere in Toronto on Aug. 18 at the Randolph Theatre and continue to New York City this fall.

Watch our interview with Perez Hilton in the video above.

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