MEL HARRIS CASHES IN
Mel Harris wagered and won big on the TV game show, "The 10,000 Pyramid" in
1973 (under the name Mel Kennerly) and today Mel's hand is all face cards. The former
"thirtysomething" star who was named one of the "10 Most Beautiful Women" by Harper's
Bazaar is capitalizing on the surge of interest in 40-plus year-old actresses.
With the adoration of "Desperate Housewives," making 40 the new 30, Harris finds
herself in demand with a whole new slate of television projects. She has a guest starring
role on the Emmy� award-winning series, "The West Wing" playing a senator who becomes
a presidential candidate. She also has a recurring role on the popular CBS series, "JAG"
playing a general's wife. [Hallmark Channel also airs 'JAG'].
In Hallmark Channel's Original movie, "Out of the Woods," Mel persuades her son
Jack (Jason London) - an attorney -- to deliver legal papers to her distant father (Ed Asner)
who has purposely isolated himself in the woods. Marooned in the woods with the
enigmatic old man, the by-the-numbers attorney is surprised to discover that his seemingly
"perfect" life might not be the one he actually wants to lead.
"This character was very interesting for me," says Harris. "I think her priorities are a
little misplaced. Many people will see that he's a crazy old man, completely off his rocker,
and they'll say, "Well, yeah, you need to protect the money before he gets rid of it all."
Harris -- whose own parents passed away when she was in her 20's -- feels that
even an aging parent who is an absolute handful beats having no parent at all, which she is
quick to tell her friends who may complain about caring for aging parents.
Harris jumped at the chance to work with Ed Asner whom she calls a national
treasure. "When I heard about the project I said, 'Here's a Hallmark production, an Ed
Asner vehicle, and I can be part of that? Where can I sign up?'"
"Out of the Woods" premieres on Saturday, April 2 (8/7c).
- HALLMARK CHANNEL -