James Van Der Beek couldn't drive anywhere without getting chased by cars of screaming girls.

The actor - who rose to fame as geeky High School student Dawson Leery in 'Dawson's Creek' - was constantly followed by vehicles full of squealing females who would speed alongside him on motorways to try and get a closer look of their teen heartthrob.

He revealed: "At the height of my TV success, I'd be going down the freeway and I'd hear a squeal from the car behind me. I'd look and there would be a minivan full of girls chasing me. I didn't know who was driving, but I thought, 'Hopefully it's not their mother going, 'Oh, come on, girls, let's get him.' "

However, the 32-year-old star barely recognises himself when he watches back old episodes of the show.

He explained to parade.com: "When I watch part of a re-run, it's like another lifetime, it's like looking at old high school or baby pictures, and saying, 'Oh, who was that kid?' But I connected with him because I was always kind of a little bit of a dork like Dawson. I always played sports, but I was also in the glee club. You know, you don't do that when you're in middle school. You don't do that when you're 15. I'm still kind of shy. I'm not the type who's going to dance on your table. Now I look back and go, 'Man, why couldn't I have had all those girls in my class who loved me as Dawson.' "