O, The Oprah Magazine | From the October 2005 issue of O, The Oprah Magazine
Senior Associate Producer—started at Harpo in 1995.
In 2004 we asked John Travolta, the star of Ladder 49, to help us surprise two firemen who'd lived through a moment that was portrayed in the movie—they'd rescued someone trapped inside a burning building. The surprise was to take place at the firehouse, and I had planned for every contingency except one—a real fire. That didn't occur to me until the fire trucks came barreling out of the station as I walked up with John.
I panicked and said, "Try not to look like John Travolta." The "fire" was a false alarm, and the crew returned to the station after 10 (loooong!) minutes. I can still see the shock on the firemen's faces when John said that he was there to fly them to Chicago to appear on the show. Travolta and I standing around on a block in Detroit? I'd call that a moment that nearly spoiled a big surprise. Hearing his voice over the speaker on his private jet? I'd call that one of the coolest experiences of my life.