Big Splash

updated 03/06/2000 at 01:00 AM EST

originally published 03/06/2000 01:00AM

Atrio of plum acting jobs kept Scott Cohen away from his family for nearly 11 months last year, but 4-year-old son Liam hardly noticed. As the two relaxed in their New York City apartment last December, recalls Cohen, "he saw David Schwimmer on the TV screen and said, 'Look, Dad. It's you!' "

In fact, Friends is just about the only TV program not featuring Cohen these days. In February alone, he stars as a man-beast named Wolf on NBC's 10-hour miniseries The 10th Kingdom (airing between Feb. 27 and March 6); plays a detective on the JonBenét Ramsey murder miniseries Perfect Murder, Perfect Town, on CBS; and appears on NYPD Blue as an alcoholic cop putting the moves on Kim Delaney. "I know it was hard for him to be away from family, but I love Scott, and I want him back," says Delaney, who is trying to make Cohen a Blue cast regular. Adds 10th Kingdom director David Carson: "He has the panache of Jack Nicholson. That wolfish grin, you know?"

The son of jazz musician Jack Cohen, 76, and his late wife, Leatrice, Scott, 38, first began performing while practicing piano in his native Bronx. "I'd get out a long black coat," says Cohen, "flip up the coat-tails and pretend I was Leonard Bernstein." He segued into stage roles and small roles in Jacob's Ladder and Private Parts but didn't hit the big time until Kingdom came.

Having completed his February hat trick, Cohen is back in front of the camera, this time in home movies with Liam. "They did the Three Little Pigs over Christmas," says his wife of 10 years, playwright Anastasia Traina, 39. "Liam directed, and Scott played all the parts. Of course, he was especially good at being the wolf."

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