One of the assignments in the TV section at Trans American School was our class teaming up to create a 10-15 minute movie. Kate Jackson had recently married the owner of Joe Hart’s bar in Madison and moved here. Our movie idea was to have an obsessive reporter sit outside the bar in hopes of getting an exclusive interview with Kate.
We filmed short segments over the course of two weeks showing the reporter going from a suit and tie to being scruffy. Along the way we filmed some funny short segments of how he passed the time while waiting for Kate to show up.
Our class scripted some parts like the reporter trying to get into the bar but being held back because he can’t find his ID. We hoped to get some “people on the street interviews” and did film some gems. We also scripted me as a stoner hippie giving my reaction to Kate Jackson moving to Madison.
Someone came up with the idea that I should get upset after the reporter tells me Kate’s “Scarecrow and Mrs. King” had been cancelled – my clueless stoner missed that happening a few years earlier. And I never reacted to Kate being in Madison because I was too busy complaining about great TV shows getting canceled by network!
I appeared later in the movie when I staggered out of the bar during a night interview. I briefly paused in the background and pulled my sunglasses down to see what was going on. The reporter was interviewing a professor (played by one of our teachers) from the UW who was a “Jackson Expert”. Turned out he was a Janet Jackson expert, not Kate.
I had three good friends in school and we were the ringleaders on a lot of projects. Dan played the reporter, Lisa was our director and Susan helped with props and other things behind the scenes. I think she came up with me dangling a cigarette out of my mouth and having a pack rolled up in my sleeves. We had a couple other classmates in minor roles but we all worked on edits and the final version together.
I took my copy of the VHS and tossed it in a box with other school and radio memories. It was forgotten until recently when I finally had it converted to digital.
Oh – the reporter never interviewed Kate but he did chase “her car” and got one of her white gloves to end the movie. Success…sort of!
Watch it here: Kate Watch Movie