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Reality Rocco's Silver-Screen Dreams

Oct. 27 2008, Published 7:07 a.m. ET

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HEAR THAT SIZZLE? DiSpirito Rocco DiSpirito is ready for his comeback. In the January issue of GQ, DiSpirito, best known as "that cheese dick chef from that reality show," lays out his plans for stardom—and they don't involve spending time in kitchens. According to writer Eric Konigsberg, DiSpirito has been taking singing lessons, is hoping to land a role on Broadway in Chicago, and has been shopping a screenplay for a semi-autobiographical film titled Grain of Salt.

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"It's about the restaurant business," he says. "There are four chefs—a French chef, a Latin chef, a trust-fund white bread who learned how to cook from the natives of a mystical indigenous tribe in Africa. Then there's a young Italian chef, who's sort of based on me." And who does he think should play his on-screen alter ego? "Johnny Depp, maybe."

It's not that DiSpirito, whose ill-fated attempt to start a high-end Italian eatery was the subject of NBC's The Restaurant, doesn't know what people think of him. "Once the show aired, a lot of people stopped returning my calls," he says. "They think what I did was a stunt, that it was inappropriate for the level of chef I was."

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