Superman, After Hours : Dean Cain Tells Celeb Hobbies

By Jae-Ha Kim
Chicago Sun-Times
July 31, 1995

People who question whether the Man of Steel is invincible have to check out “Off Camera With Dean Cain” at 7 tonight;  on WLS-Channel 7.

It’s not kryptonite that foils Cain – the man in tights on ABC’s “Lois & Clark: The New Adventures of Superman,” which airs at 7 p.m. Sundays on WLS-Channel 7 – but rather a quick soccer shootout with Andrew Shue. That’s right – the milquetoast Billy on “Melrose Place.”

“Soccer is not my forte,” said Cain, laughing.  “Even if it was, Andrew still probably would’ve kicked my butt.”

Maybe not.  Cain was a football hero before he became a TV star. Heavily recruited by colleges, Cain chose Princeton University, where he was an All-American free safety and still holds the NCAA record for the most interceptions in one season.  Cain also was captain of Princeton’s volleyball team.

The Buffalo Bills recruited Cain shortly after graduation, but a knee injury cut short his pro football career.  Luckily, Cain had other talents to fall back on.  Though writing is his first love (he wrote the Christmas episode of “Lois & Clark” and plans to pen a few more this season), acting pays the bills.

Cain appeared in numerous commercials and had guest-starring roles on “Life Goes On,” “A Different World” and “Grapevine.”

Before “Lois & Clark,” his best-known role was as Rick, Brenda’s hunky college boyfriend on “Beverly Hills, 90210.”

“The one question I get asked more than anything else by reporters is, `What do you do in your spare time off camera?’ ” said Cain, who wrote, directed, hosted and executive-produced the one-hour special.  “I started to wonder what other people did when they went home, and that’s kind of how the whole thing got started.”

On “Off Camera,” Cain hangs with other celebs as they enjoy their hobbies – on camera.  Matthew Fox (“Party of Five”), who played on Columbia University’s football team against Cain, prefers the tranquillity of fly fishing, while Daphne Zuniga (“Melrose Place”) enjoys the thrills of riding motorcycles.  Holly Robinson (“Hangin’ With Mr. Cooper”) likes taking her pets outdoors to a dog-friendly park in L.A., while MTV’s Dan Cortese loves playing video football games indoors.  Debbe Dunning (“Home Improvement”) schusses down the slopes, while NBA Rookie of the Year Chris Webber would rather barbecue.

With a few exceptions, however, Cain proves to be better than his guests at just about everything.  He meets his match in a beach volleyball game against his girlfriend – not college sweetheart Brooke Shields, but rather 6-foot-3 pro volleyball player and model Gabrielle Reece.

“We met at a fashion show,” said the 6-foot Cain, who turns 29 today; . “She had on heels and was about 6-6, and I was like, `Wow,’ and she was like, `What a nice little guy.’  She was nice, but I don’t think she was terribly interested in me.  But I didn’t care.  I pursued her and she gave in.”

Just for the record, what do you do off camera?

“I work,” he said, laughing.  “That’s all I have time for, but I can’t complain.  I love what I do.”

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