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NAMES & FACES

The Quince Orchard High School grad started his career at Arlington's Clark Street Playhouse in his early teens and later moved on to modeling, with a push from a family friend who happened to be a casting director. Johnson was featured last year in an Abercrombie & Fitch catalogue -- as a centerfold, no less -- and is gearing up for the January debut of his first movie, "Gardener of Eden" (directed by Kevin Connolly of "Entourage" fame), as well as the March launch of "What Goes On," a TV series on the N network.

The model-actor now lives in New York but travels home frequently to visit his folks in Maryland. "My parents have been so supportive," he said. "My mom brings little pictures of me with her everywhere in her purse."

-- Korin Miller

A Hometown Hottie

Local guy Tyler Johnson is getting a lot of attention from teens these days -- with a little help from a heartthrob feature in Seventeen magazine.

The young Ashton Kutcher look-alike was named one of the "Seventeen Hottest Guys in America" by the monthly mag, along with the likes of R&B singer Chris Brown and singer-songwriter Teddy Geiger . Not bad for a 20-year-old model from Gaithersburg.

"The response has been amazing," Johnson told us yesterday of his pinup feature. "It's opening doors in modeling and acting."

The Quince Orchard High School grad started his career at Arlington's Clark Street Playhouse in his early teens and later moved on to modeling, with a push from a family friend who happened to be a casting director. Johnson was featured last year in an Abercrombie & Fitch catalogue -- as a centerfold, no less -- and is gearing up for the January debut of his first movie, "Gardener of Eden" (directed by Kevin Connolly of "Entourage" fame), as well as the March launch of "What Goes On," a TV series on the N network.

The model-actor now lives in New York but travels home frequently to visit his folks in Maryland. "My parents have been so supportive," he said. "My mom brings little pictures of me with her everywhere in her purse."

-- Korin Miller


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