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Eric McCormack’s rogue return to TV -- as con man Clark Rockefeller

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The gloves are off for Eric McCormack. No more cuddly gay-guy roles these days for the former “Will & Grace” star.

In his second act, the married father of two is, um, going rogue. He’s returning to TV as a sociopath who needs a therapist and a therapist who needs a therapist.

In March, he comes to Lifetime as the titular German con man of “The Clark Rockefeller Story.”

“He was a total lie,” McCormack said with delight at the Divine Design 2009 gala Thursday in Beverly Hills. “It’s a true story. He was arrested for kidnapping his own daughter, and for the six days he was on the run, they realized not only that he was never a Rockefeller, but he’d made up the last 30 years of his life and fooled a lot of people” (including his Harvard Business School-educated, McKinsey senior executive wife).

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He also falls in love with Julia Louis-Dreyfus’ character on “The New Adventures of Old Christine.” He plays her shrink, Dr. Max Kershaw, and they meet cute on the couch.

And he just wrapped “Textuality” in Toronto. “It’s a romantic comedy about how the young people are connecting a lot, having a lot of sex, but they’re doing it through texting. I play the older lover of a young girl. I’m always playing older now.”

It does have its compensations, though. It makes McCormack’s character a wee bit naughtier.

“I’m having tremendous fun,” he says. – Irene Lacher

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