While a guest on NPR's "Fresh Air With Terry Gross" in July 2007,
Shankman revealed to Gross that he did not start dancing until he was
18, which is very late for someone who intends to become a professional
dancer. Furthermore, once he decided to become a dancer, he auditioned
for college dance programs all over the country, including NYU, North
Carolina, and Julliard (the most prestigious and selective dance
program in the United States), and he got into all of them without ever
once having taken a dance class.
[In response to Kevin Naff's (editor of The Washington Blade) proposed
boycott of film "Hairspray" (2007) by gays, which claimed star John
Travolta had "no business" playing an iconic gay character] "I am
stunned this has gotten that far. He (Naff) has made the dumbest claims
on the entire planet. Everybody involved in 'Hairspray' - all the
creators are gay. So John has no problem with people being gay - me,
the writers, composer, John Waters - all gay. John's personal beliefs
never walked onto my set. I never heard the word 'Scientology.'"