Broadway role is a fantasy for Etheridge

Melissa Etheridge says she's having a "blast" getting in touch with her punk side.

The Grammy- and Oscar-winning singer-songwriter will play drug dealer St. Jimmy in the hit Broadway musical based on Green Day's rock opera, "American Idiot."

"It's been crazy. Oh my God, it's so fun, though," the folk rocker says.

"I'm having a blast. I'm so outside of my comfort zone and I'm like living out high school fantasies."

Etheridge, 49, takes over the part from Green Day's lead singer Billie Joe Armstrong for eight shows, today through Sunday.

Armstrong, the composer and co-author of the musical, returns Feb. 10 as part of a 50-show stand.

Egypt's problems worry Sharif

Omar Sharif, Egypt's most famous actor, says he's concerned for the future of his country.

Cairo's Tahrir Square, where protests have been centered, is visible from his high-rise apartment, and helicopters buzz overhead.

"They want the president to step down. This is the first thing. After that, they do not know what they want," he told the Associated Press on Monday. "I personally don't know what they will do afterwards. Who will they bring, who will take his place, who will be in charge of the country?"

Sharif is best known for his roles in "Doctor Zhivago" and "Lawrence of Arabia."

New Superman cast

British actor Henry Cavill will star as Superman (and, obviously, Clark Kent) in the next installment of the movie franchise, Warner Bros. Pictures has announced.

The film is to be directed by "300" director Zack Snyder, who says Cavill is "the perfect choice to don the cape and 'S' shield."

No title has been announced for the film, which is intended to reboot the franchise after its latest incarnation fizzled. The 2006 movie "Superman Returns" was directed by Bryan Singer and starred Brandon Routh.

Cavill is relatively unknown. He had been considered for the blockbuster roles of Batman, James Bond and even the previous version of Superman. He co-starred on Showtime's "The Tudors."

Another year older

Today's birthdays: Gospel singer George Beverly Shea , 102... actor Stuart Whitman , 83... singer Don Everly , 74 ... actor Garrett Morris , 74 ... actor Sherman Hemsley , 73... bluegrass singer Del McCoury , 72 ... TV personality-singer Joy Philbin , 70 ... rock musician Mike Campbell (Tom Petty & the Heartbreakers), 61... Lisa Marie Presley , 43... comedian-actor Pauly Shore , 43... rapper Big Boi (Outkast), 36... actor Jarrett Lennon , 29... TV personality Lauren Conrad , 25.