Josh Duhamel, who went from daytime drama to prime-time stardom in NBC’s “Las Vegas” to feature films — such as his current role opposite Julianne Hough of “Dancing With the Stars” in the movie version of Nicholas Sparks’ “Safe Haven” — would like fans to know that he’s more than just a tall, handsome leading man.
If you haven’t seen Duhamel’s silly side before, just tune into the 26th Annual Kids Choice Awards, airing Saturday, March 23, on Nickelodeon.
“Finally,” he tells Zap2it, “somebody sees what a fool I am or can be.”
Duhamel has worked with Nick before, including doing a voice for the animated show “Fanboy & Chum Chum” and making an appearance on the 2011 Kids Choice Awards dressed as Justin Bieber.
“I’m like an aging Bieber,” he says.
Told the baby-faced singer is showing off a new set of abs in Instagram photos, Duhamel laughs.
“Is that what he’s doing now? Uh-oh, he’s working out. He’s exploiting his heartthrobbery.”
It might be hard to accuse Duhamel of that this year, since, for a Kids Choice Awards promo, he performed the nominated songs dressed up as the artists — Taylor Swift, Carly Rae Jepsen, Harry Styles of One Direction and Psy.
There may be more of this, depending on how Nickelodeon fans vote online.
“I’m really pushing to do as many impersonations and as much dancing as I can,” Duhamel says. “A lot of this is going to be about what the kids want. It’s probably the most interactive with the viewers that I’ve ever done. That’s what’s going to be exciting to me.
“I really don’t know — and won’t know — what I will be doing until we see the results of what they want to see, the night of.”
He doesn’t just pull out his celebrity impressions for public settings. Sometimes there’s an audience of one: his wife, Black Eyed Peas singer Stacy “Fergie” Ferguson.
“I’m always trying to impersonate people [at home],” he says. “The last time I can remember is singing a full Britney Spears song and completely committing to it as if I was Britney Spears, while Ferg just sat on the stairs and watched, in utter awe or disappointment or disgust. I’m not sure which.”
Duhamel says he’ll be very comfortable on awards night, considering how much he loves kids.
“I’ve always had a great rapport with kids,” he says, “ever since I was 1. I feel most natural in this world than anything else. I’m not afraid to just get down and dirty and have as much fun as any of them. It’s going to be a party.”
It’s lucky that Duhamel likes children, since word recently came out — after this interview was done, though — that he and his wife are expecting their first child.
That ups the stakes a bit for a possible Ferguson appearance on the awards.
As to whether she will show up, Duhamel says, “There’s a very good chance of that. I don’t think it’ll be a musical appearance, but there is a chance she will appear. I can’t promise you anything.”
But she’s happy to lend her man to his young fans for a night.
“She was as excited as me when she heard I was going to do it,” Duhamel says. “She knows me better than anybody, so she knows there’s a very silly side of me that a lot of people don’t know about. I try not to take myself too seriously in this business, because, first of all, I’m very lucky to even be here, and if you’re not going to do it and have fun, why do it?
“So none of it is so precious that you can’t make fun of yourself a little bit.”
Duhamel says he’d rather be hanging with the kids than with his fellow TV and movie stars.
“The pressure’s high,” he says, “but at the same time, I feel most comfortable in this environment. I’d much rather go to the KCAs than the Golden Globes. If I had my choice, 10 times out of 10, I’d go to the KCAs, because it’s fun.
“It’s not so much about being cool or just putting on a front. You can just go and have fun and act the fool, and why not? It’s more my speed.”
And, since this is Nickelodeon, there will be green slime.
“Yes,” Duhamel says, “of course, I’m preparing to be slimed. There are many, many wardrobe changes. You’ll see. The whole idea is that the kids decide what I will do on this show. You can only imagine some of the things that they’re posting — anything from a pink giraffe farting confetti to dressing up like the U.S. girls Olympic gymnastics team.
“It’s all kinds of stuff. It’s just bonkers. And it’s going to be great.”