Transcript from Octocber 12, 1999
10/12/99 Judd Nelson
NBCLive: Welcome Judd!
Judd_Nelson: Hello everyone! Thank you for letting me join you in the chat room!
ASKNBC: juddfan says: As most of the breakfast club gang moved on to other projects you seemed to stay out of the limelight. Was this intentional on your part?
Judd_Nelson: Yes, I'd been "lit on fire" a number of times, and thought it was time to cool off.
ASKNBC: gailen says: Do you still keep in touch with the old "brat packers?"
Judd_Nelson: I've not seen any of the people that I've worked with in those films for years. We've had differing schedules.
ASKNBC: moviebuff says: What is your most favorite role that you have played?
Judd_Nelson: I have no favorite, but I definitely enjoy the film "The Dark Backward," written and directed by Adam Rifkin, and costarring Bill Paxton and Lara Flynn Boyle. I like that it's not for the squeamish.
ASKNBC: justineguff says: I loved you on "Suddenly Susan," and I was sad to hear you are leaving the show. What was it like working with Brooke Shields? Did you have a crush on her growing up?
Judd_Nelson: Brooke was a blast to work with. she was very professional, and very hard working. As a kid I had a crush on Sophia Loren, and Raquel Welch.
ASKNBC: happione says: You have played a variety of characters in your career. Do you prefer being a hero or a villain?
Judd_Nelson: I like being a villain more. Villains are more exciting. Heroes always make the right decision; I find that seldom happens in my life.
ASKNBC: manolis_varnas says: Judd, I liked you in the film St. Elmo's Fire; it was one of the best movies in the golden 80's. What was it like making that movie?
Judd_Nelson: A lot of fun. It was a long schedule, but we got to get to know each other pretty well. It was so long ago, but I remember it being a good time.
ASKNBC: guest-Original` says: What is the one thing about you that most people are surprised at when they find out?
Judd_Nelson: That I really can't dunk a basketball!
ASKNBC: guest-gilbert says: Are you considering any other sitcoms at the moment?
Judd_Nelson: No, not at the moment, though I would not rule it out for the future.
ASKNBC: Boop_F_27 says: Do you find it hard to live in the spotlight of show biz?
Judd_Nelson: Well, you have to be careful what you say and what you do. It forces you to be more protective and private. It wreaks havoc on your personal life. But as my mother always says, "If you can't stand the heat, get out of the kitchen."
ASKNBC: hastening5 says: Do you prefer acting in a movie or on TV better? What are some of the differences?
Judd_Nelson: Well, my first love is acting on stage. And when you do a sitcom, it is a hybrid of stage and film. It's like stage in the sense that you perform in front of a live audience. It's like film in the sense that if you make a mistake, you can go back and do it again. But personally, I have no preference. I like live theater, sitcoms, and movies on the big and small screen. I like it all!
ASKNBC: manolis_varnas says: Judd, who are your favorite directors?
Judd_Nelson: Well, all of the directors that I've worked with I have loved and would work with again. Of the ones I have worked with, I have no favorites. But there are hundreds of other directors I haven't worked with and would love to. But again, I have no favorite.
ASKNBC: CAGardcomm says: Did you enjoy making "New Jack City?" And was it hard for you to do a drug picture like that?
Judd_Nelson: I loved doing "New Jack City." I went to acting school with the director, Mario Van Peebles, and was thrilled at the opportunity to work with him.
ASKNBC: Achaa-guy says: So, how does it feel to be popular and to be speaking in TALKCITY !!??
Judd_Nelson: I'm on cloud nine!
ASKNBC: Boop_F_27 says: What was the hardest movie you had to do?
Judd_Nelson: All projects have their difficult moments, but ultimately I am very grateful to make my living doing what I would do for free. It's always tough, though, when you have to wear shorts or a bathing suit, and the weather on location is below zero. And vice versa!
ASKNBC: Minstral says: What makes you more inclined to accept a script? Is it more for your own emotional response to it, or for what you feel the script is capable of?
Judd_Nelson: It could be almost any reason that would draw me to a project. It could be the message; it could be the story; it could be the character; it could be the director; it could be the other actors. Sometimes it's a combination of these things, sometimes one single element is enough.
ASKNBC: lakelassy says: I saw on the "Today Show" that you have a broken arm. What happened?
Judd_Nelson: I have a torn ligament in my thumb. I was walking my dog. She saw a squirrel. I did not see the curb; I went DOWN! (laughing) I'm an idiot!
ASKNBC: manolis_varnas says: Judd, is there something you hate in show biz the most? Care to share that with us today?
Judd_Nelson: Well, it's not something I hate. But what I find peculiar is that it is very rare for the baker to be confused with the cake. However, it's very easy to confuse Sean Connery with James Bond. And sometimes in the entertainment industry, people believe the cake is more real than the baker is.
ASKNBC: MsG_girl says: with the new millennium approaching, where do you see your career heading?
Judd_Nelson: Into the next century! (laughing)
ASKNBC: manolis_varnas says: Judd, what do you think of the movies back in the 80's, and now?
Judd_Nelson: Well, any film made in it's present time period is hopefully authentic to that period. As our times change, the style and subject matter of the films change. I like films from all time periods. Especially when women ride motorcycles and shoot guns! (LOL!)
ASKNBC: guest-mayacat says: What would be your dream role on Broadway?
Judd_Nelson: My dream role on Broadway is King Lear because I'd be really old and they'd still hire me.
ASKNBC: guest-Original` says: OUCH - What kind of a dog do you have?
Judd_Nelson: A Staffordshire Bull Terrier named Tallulah Bighead. Who as we speak, is just finishing up with the mailman.
ASKNBC: guest-mayacat says: What actors are your mentors?
Judd_Nelson: mayacat, my father, who is an attorney, is my mentor. He is the person I look up to most, and that I respect the most. In acting school, the actors that I watched most were Marlon Brando and Giancarlo Giannini, the great Italian actor. But now I like every single actor or actress in the world, because we never know what the conditions are like when they are working. I give everyone the benefit of the doubt, and root for them like a psychotic sports fan.
ASKNBC: guest-amber says: What is it like working with Andrew McCarthy?
Judd_Nelson: Wow! That was a long time ago. I have not seen Andrew since that movie. But my memory of working with him was that he was very good, and that we had fun.
ASKNBC: lakelassy says: Are the majority of your close friends in show biz also?
Judd_Nelson: Well, my closest friend is canine. I have precious few "close" friends, and most of them are not actors.
ASKNBC: guest-Original` says: What was your father's reaction to your roll in "From The Hip?"
Judd_Nelson: Original`, he liked that I liked what he does enough to do a movie about someone who does that. But he said, "There's no way after one or two cases they would make him a partner."
ASKNBC: Molamom says: Do you ever think of going back to a quieter life?
Judd_Nelson: Well, there's an old saying, "Once they've seen Paris, how do you keep them back down on the farm?"
ASKNBC: guest-NBCSoapFan says: What attracted you to play the role of Alan Freed?
Judd_Nelson: He was an American pop music icon who was drummed out of the business for his liberal social views. It is a cautionary tale. Also, I just dig that music!
ASKNBC: rocknroll says: What types of resources did you use to research your upcoming role as Alan Freed?
Judd_Nelson: A book titled, "Big Beat Heat," by John A. Jackson, and the INTERNET! I also used film and audiotape.
ASKNBC: guest-Kayla says: What do you find fascinating about Alan Freed's life?
Judd_Nelson: That in the early 50's, in a climate of racial separation, Freed believed a massive common ground existed between white and black, which was THE BEAT. He knew kids of ALL colors and creeds would forget their differences if they could rock and bop to a big beat that was rocking. He was RIGHT! We owe him more than our music.
ASKNBC: BCFan says: How was this role different from other roles you have played in the past?
Judd_Nelson: I've never played a DJ. The time period is new, the 50's.
ASKNBC: Gypsy7strz says: Did you enjoy filming "Mr. Rock N Roll: the Alan Freed Story?"
Judd_Nelson: Yes, absolutely! It was overflowing with great music and great performances. and the director, Andy Wolk, is an actor's director. He was a pleasure to work for.
ASKNBC: Dawn says: Do you find it ironic that Mr. Freed was one of the first inductees to the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, but was seemingly black-balled by other DJs in the 60s?
Judd_Nelson: I think it's incredibly ironic, but I'm also very happy that posthumously, at least, he was recognized for his great contribution to American pop music/culture.
ASKNBC: GoldieGirl says: Who else will be in the movie?
Judd_Nelson: Madchen Amick, Paula Abdul, and Leon.
ASKNBC: guest-Original` says: Where was your new movie filmed?
Judd_Nelson: In Toronto, Ontario, Canada, which doubled for both Cleveland in the 50's, and New York City in the 50's. I liked being there very much; the weather was nice, and the crew was great.
ASKNBC: manolis_varnas says: Does the movie have a soundtrack? And what is your opinion?
Judd_Nelson: I don't know if it has a soundtrack that is going to be released, but I do know that it has an INCREDIBLE soundtrack. Including everyone from Bo Diddley to Jerry Lee Lewis to Frankie Lymon to Buddy Holly.
ASKNBC: CCCandy says: How was it playing a role from the 50's?
Judd_Nelson: Great, except for all those wool suits.
ASKNBC: Sylvia said: Are you a fan of the 50's music?
Judd_Nelson: Yes, I'm a huge blues fan, and I love R&B. James Brown is my favorite singer. I'm a huge Bo Diddley fan.
ASKNBC: guest-kelsy says: Judd, I just watched breakfast club this weekend. What a great movie! How was it to work with Anthony Michael hall?
Judd_Nelson: Oh, he was great! Very funny, and very imaginative. He was a blast to work with.
ASKNBC: manolis_varnas says: Judd, what actress would you love to work with?
Judd_Nelson: Sophia Loren.
ASKNBC: guest-Paularae says: I loved, "From The Hip;" - very sexy! Will you star in a comedy movie sometime soon?
Judd_Nelson: I would love to. None have really crossed my path. I'm keeping an eye out.
ASKNBC: CASPERg1 says: I loved you in "Relentless;" you played a great psycho. Do you have any plans for another movie like that? I would love to see you in one.
Judd_Nelson: Thank you, thank you. Coming out soon on the USA Network, although it may have a theatrical release, is a killer thriller called "Cabin By The Lake," in which I am not, let me repeat, NOT a good guy!
ASKNBC: Breezy-57 says: Do you find you have shaken the "Brat Pack" image that followed you for so long?
Judd_Nelson: I don't know. What was bad about that label was that it portrayed my generation of actors as being unprofessional. My experience working with those actors was very professional. All the actors and actresses were prepared, on time, imaginative, enthusiastic, and supportive of the projects. Whether that label lasts forever, like my mother says, "If you can't stand the heat, stay out of the kitchen." It's a public profession like sports, and politics. Things will be said, and written; just don't take them personally. Suck it up. And keep plugging!
ASKNBC: KRYS-M says: What do you think about all these celebrities getting into politics? (Jesse Ventura, Warren Beatty etc.)
Judd_Nelson: As long as they look out for the poor, the needy, and the disenfranchised, I'm all for it. I've been planning all along to use my acting career as a stepping stone to the Governorship of California and the subsequent Presidency of the United States. (I'm kidding!!!)
ASKNBC: guest-Original` says: I've never thought of you as "unprofessional." Thank you for always putting your "all" into a movie. It shows.
Judd_Nelson: Thank you, thank you, thank you, and thank you. Did I thank you?
ASKNBC: Boop_F_27 says: Do you feel that you have some of the same traits as Alan Freed?
Judd_Nelson: We share boundless enthusiasm. We share right versus what's best for our career. And we share a love of a good beat.
ASKNBC: manolis_varnas says: Judd, what was the best part making this movie, "The Alan Freed Story?"
Judd_Nelson: The best part was when we were staging the live shows, and we had 300 people in the auditorium. They were all dressed up in the fifties clothes. We had the great 50's bands, like Jackie Wilson and the Dominoes, all slicked up in their shiny suits. We had that incredible music blasting through the speakers, and I'm up there at the microphone asking the kids if they are ready to Rock and Roll! And they screamed! It was great.
ASKNBC: guest-Original` says: Have you spoken with any of Alan Freed's descendants?
Judd_Nelson: No, I have not, but I understand that one of Alan Freed's sons was very helpful in the development of the screenplay. And I hope that this project can help raise the awareness of how important Alan Freed was to the development of American pop music and culture.
ASKNBC: primadana says: Judd, was it an easy transition back to films after doing TV?
Judd_Nelson: I'm getting delirious! I was fortunate to be making the feature film "Light It Up," and the independent feature "The Cure for Boredom" while I was doing "Suddenly Susan" last season. So I was never away.
ASKNBC: CO-peterw says: Can you tell us more about your upcoming movie, "Light it Up?"
Judd_Nelson: It's a story about a New York City high school. I'm a teacher, a good teacher who likes his students and is liked by them. I am suspended. They riot. A security guard is wounded and captured, and there is a standoff. It stars Forrest Whitaker, Vanessa Williams, Usher, and Clifton Collins. It will be out in November, NATIONWIDE!
ASKNBC: DFW_TEXas says: What is your favorite sports team? (Baseball, football, basketball, and hockey)
Judd_Nelson: My favorite baseball team? The Boston Red Sox. My favorite basketball team? The Boston Celtics. My favorite football team? The New England Patriots. My favorite hockey team? The Boston Bruins. Needless to say, I'm from New England.
ASKNBC: hannamc says: Do you have an official fan club and web site?
ASKNBC: guest-veronica says: What is your favorite project you have worked on?
Judd_Nelson: I've liked them all, I have no favorites.
ASKNBC: guest-Original` says: Greetings from Canada! What was your first "paid" acting job? How old were you?
Judd_Nelson: My first paid acting job was a movie called, "Fandango." It's a movie written and directed by Kevin Reynolds. It also starred Kevin Costner and was in 1983.
ASKNBC: nancydq says: Did you go to acting school or work with a trainer?
Judd_Nelson: I went to acting school in New York City for two years. I studied with Stella Adler.
ASKNBC: guest-zzzchatzzz says: Hi Judd. I think you are a very funny person. I was wondering, what makes you laugh? Where are you ticklish?
Judd_Nelson: Almost anything makes me laugh, especially jokes at my own expense. And I will never, ever admit to being ticklish anywhere.
ASKNBC: manolis_varnas says: Judd, would you ever make a music career too?
Judd_Nelson: If you heard me sing, you would KNOW the answer is NO!
ASKNBC: haleyshane says: What do feel the new millennium is going to bring? (OK, off the wall but...LOL)
Judd_Nelson: Another hundred years.
ASKNBC: Breezy-57 says: Is there a role that you wish you could go back and re-do?
Judd_Nelson: What am I Kreskin? Nostradamus? All of them! You can always improve, Breezy.
ASKNBC: guest-pants says: Which role do you think is your best performance to date?
Judd_Nelson: The role of a good son every time I see my mom and dad.
ASKNBC: manolis_varnas says: Judd, would you ever direct a movie?
Judd_Nelson: I would love to, and maybe one day I will. I'll probably be directing a short film in the very near future.
ASKNBC: rdgolmn says: With all that you have going on, do you find time to relax and relieve stress?
Judd_Nelson: I find it very difficult to relax. I find it increasingly difficult to find outlets for my frustration, but I will continue the search.
ASKNBC: Minstral says: Do you still get together with Charlie Sheen and Emilio Estevez and ride terror from Samo-high through Trancas on PCH?
Judd_Nelson: I have no idea what you are talking about!
ASKNBC: cowchippers says: Where did you grow up? Where were you born?
Judd_Nelson: Portland, Maine.
ASKNBC: guest-Paularae says: Who's your ideal woman?
Judd_Nelson: I don't know. But I hope and I pray she is out there.
NBCLive says: We are just about out of time for today Judd, thank you for joining us. Do you have any last comments for our audience?
Judd_Nelson: I want to thank you all very uch for taking the time to ask me the questions, and I want to wish you all the best in the new millennium. And remember, be nice to your mom and dad!
NBCLive: copyright 1999.
NBCLive: Good Night!