On The Jazz
On The Jazz Newsletter: Volume 2 Issue N°26

Date: September 23, 1996
Author: Nicole Pellegrini
Download: otjv02i26.zip

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*Home of the On the Jazz Newsletter Archives**
DATE:   September 23, 1996
ISSUE:  26
Hi friends,

This will be a (reasonably) brief edition, due to some other time sinks at the moment keeping me busy, but we still have interesting stuff for everyone this week...

Due to some requests, I'm pushing the date of the Philly party back to SATURDAY OCTOBER 12. This seems to be the best date for currently interested individuals. Start time will be 12 pm and will go until whenever, and is a garunteed "fun-for-all" event. For more information, ontact me via private email.

I have recently learned that "UFO's Tonite!", the weekly radio program hosted by Don Ecker and Dwight Schultz on the Cable Radio Network, has gone off the air as of this July. The reason for the loss of the show apparently was not a lack of popularity or support from the fans, but a lack of support from CRN itself. In a recent communication with Don Ecker, he reassured me that he is currently at work to find a new home for the show on another syndication network - hopefully one with a better national distribution than CRN as well. And, Don promises, when the show does find a new home Dwight will be back on the air with him.

Most of us are aware by now that "The A-Team" is airing on the fx network here again in the states, 7 days a week in the early evening. Check your local TV Guide for the airing time in your time zone. Apparently they are doing a pretty good job of airing the shows in order.

Also, Dwight Schultz made an appearance this past Saturday on the season premiere of "Touched by an Angel" on CBS, playing a child psychologist. The episode was called "A Joyful Noise." If anyone needs a video copy, let me know.

Here's the continuation of the article on Dirk Benedict, which started in the last issue of the newsletter:

"The Way They Were"

by Rochelle Williams (exact publication date unknown)

...Not knowing if and how long it would take for that dream to come true, Dirk was positive his iron will was going to pull him through if finding work was a long and slow process. Fate proved to be kind, but it was his talent which earned him a sizable part on Broadway in a short, and often unheard of, two months. "Abelard and Heloise" was Dirk's first Broadway show with Diana Rigg and Keith Mitchell in the leading roles.

But that was only the beginning. Leading roles for Dirk steadily kept rolling in as waves to the seashore.

Dirk was a draft dodging photographer in his first movie called "Georgia Georgia." The 1972 release was authored by poetess Maya Angelou and was made in Sweden.

When the movie was completed, Dirk became a "bit of a vagabond" and car
trekked across Europe in a Jaguar with some friends he met in Sweden. At the close of the expedition, he ended up on a little known Greek island which gave birth to a three-month love affair.

"It sounds strange, but one of the reasons I loved Greece," he says thoughtfully, "is that it was so similar to Montana. The people are similar too; very-gregarious and outgoing. They were always opening their arms to me.

"I rented this little house for $12 a month. It was a villa built in 1939 by the Germans and it was beautifull. When I saw it, I thought 'this is it!' A look out over the veranda and I could see Turkey off in the distance," Dirk vividly recalls.

Demands from loyal fans and a persuasive agent brought him back to the States long enough to do "Butterflies Are Free" on Broadway with Gloria Swanson. Much later, Dirk was infected once again with "travel fever" and toured with the production company to Los Angeles and Hawaii. Underneath the blue skies of Hawaii, he said "Aloha'' to his first television appearance on "Hawaii Five-O." Afterwards Dirk made the 1973 box-office sleeper "Ssssss" which traced the antics of a lunatic scientist who concocts a potion that can transform a human being into a snake. Strother Martin was the scientist who had Dirk as his able bodied assistant and unbeknown guinea pig. Of the film he says: "It may leave scars on my psyche forever!"

Later in 1974, Dirk was model turned-actress Twiggy's humorless and psychotic hubby in the English film, "W". It was a huge flop. Then in'74, Aaron Spelling Productions sent out the word that it was searching for a young and good looking actor to co-star in an upcoming ABC television series called "Chopper One." Having both the ability and the looks to fit the role, Dirk became "Chopper One"'s police helicopter pilot.

Unfortunately. 13 weeks after the series was on the air, it was cancelled and made an abrupt crash landing. Dirk faults the 30-minute program with not being long enough to bring the two main characters to life. "Chopper One"'s nosedive might well have been a foreshadow of what the future held for Dirk, whose career really became rounded after that production. It could have been a bleak period tor the actor, but he decided to turn the tables and make the best of it. "In my life I always believe that everything will come at the proper time, everything will happen when it's supposed to," Dirk philosophizes. Life slowed down for a while, but the situation did not deter him from going on to other creative avenues.

Dirk took a 2-year hiatus from Hollywood, traveling across the country, writing screenplays, music, and poems. To get himself in fine form, he became an AAU long distance runner and also isalated himself in a Montana cabin for six weeks eating grains and losing 40 lbs. during the process.

Gloria Swanson, with whom Dirk still maintains a close friendship, influenced him to change his eating habits while they were working together. But his absence from Hollywood was the chief factor that made him a serious follower of eating only rice, wheat, and oats-a diet which he cails "very un-American"
because it doesn't include beef: Much misunderstanding has arisen between the people he grew up with as a result of his meatless meals.
"They used to have to literllly restrain some of the guys from physically attacking me because I didn't eat beef. They make their living from beef so it was a very sensitive subject," he sighs.
Dirk returned to Hollywood in 1976 with no regrets and a fresh outlook on his career. He believes the time off prepared him for the work he is now
doing. In retrospect he says: "Everything happens for the best. Thank goodness I didn't stay in Hollywood on the phone trying to make things happen. Instead I bummed around and had wonderful experiences!"
No sooner than he was back in tinseltown did the parts begin to mount up as before with guest shots on "Charlie's Angels", several television movies, and then in the summer of '77 he nabbed the male lead in the stage production of "Lil' Abner" wlth Lucie Arnaz.

Finally came anothei big break with Battlestar Galactica and Dirk is now in millions of viewers homes each week. With his love!

<The End>
Last issue's question was:
>In 'West Coast Turnaround," what did Face tell Murdock not to look at?

Michele Lellouche remembered correctly that Face told Murdock not to look at the horses. :-)

This issue's question is:
>What was the name of the cook at the POW camp the Team was held in during the

That's all for this issue, next time - an ONJ SECOND ANNIVERSARY SPECIAL!!
Quote of the week:
        "I will find civilization, muchachos, I will
bring back reinforcements-what on Earth will you be doing
while I am gone?"
        "Just guess, Murdock.  Just guess."

          Murdock and Hannibal in "Holiday in the Hills"

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