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Superstar Interview: Cody Linley

You might recognize him as heartthrob Jake Ryan on Disney's teen hit, Hannah Montana, but recently Cody Linley took on a new role -- Jesus in the Next Generation New Testament Dramatic Audio Bible. In this 20-CD set, Linley helps revamp the New Testament. The all-star cast also includes teen idols Jordin Sparks, Corbin Bleu, Emily Osment, and more. We talked to Linley about his new project, Hannah Montana, and of course, his mom.

How did you get involved in this project?
About 8 months ago, my friends Alyson (Stoner) and Emily (Osment) told me about it, and I was hooked. After I auditioned for the part of Matthew, they told me I should play the part of Jesus.

Wow, what an upgrade!
Yeah, I was really excited to read the part of the greatest man on earth. We had a crazy long recording process -- like 4 hours a day for 4 or 5 months.

Why is it so important to you?
I am a Christian and I understand that everything given to me is a gift from God. I believe the word of the Bible. I was working on an effective message that I believe in 100%.

What was the best part about it?
The best part of this was being able to keep my relationship with God in my day job. I had just moved out to L.A. when I started and it's a crazy lifestyle. It was awesome to have my first big job learning the scripture.

Did you have to know a lot about the Bible going into the project, or did you have to learn about it as you went?
Going in, I knew a lot about the Bible. But every time I pick it up I learn something new.

Do you think it will make the Bible cool for kids?
This is for the whole family, not just kids. In this day and age, hardly anyone reads anymore; we all are on the go with our iPods, running around. With this, you can download the New Testament to MP3s and listen to it on the way to school.

How'd you get started acting?
My older brother, Chad, was an actor. And I saw him and thought, "Aw, I want to do that!" I was five-years-old and pretty shy. My mom was an acting coach and asked, "Are you sure you want to do this?" But I ended up doing a commercial and had so much fun; then I did some modeling and TV shows.