Q&A: William Katt

I chatted with actor William Katt about his legacy of roles including “The Greatest American Hero”, “Carrie”, and “House.”

You’ve been on stage, you’ve done television and film. Which do you prefer and why?

I started in the theater so it’s probably my favorite. I’ve worked in several theater groups over the years. I even got to work with Fosse when we did “Pippin” for home entertainment. My favorite part is working on the puzzle of a show.

Why do you think “Carrie” become the cult phenomenon it did?

I don’t know. Everyone had heard of Brian de Palma and he was the one to watch. “Carrie” was lightning in a bottle. He incorporated all of his wonderful techniques in that film and it showed. It took the horror genre to the next level. I remember being in TIME magazine and NEWSWEEK with Sissy Spacek and John Travolta in the same week. (pause) Looking back, that was extraordinary wasn’t it? Let’s give some credit to the author too ::laughs::

Just a little!

I read that “The Exorcist” “Aliens” are just a few of your favorite films. Why is that?

Because they scared the shit out of me.

::laughs::

I literally had to leave the theater during both of those films. They had a visceral effect on me

“The Exorcist” scared the shit out of me too. I saw it when I was sixteen and had nightmares for a few nights.

Yup. Try watching it with Linda Blair sitting next to you.

If you could describe your experience on “The Greatest American Hero” in one word, what would it be and why?

Fun. Everyday was fun. It was one of my favorite characters to play. A real guy, put in a weird situation. That’s how I played that role. There was even a similiarity to Roger Cobb, who I played in “House.”

I loved working with Connie Selleca, Stephen Cannell, the rest of the cast and crew as well.

Would you ever consider appearing in a reboot of the show?

Well a few years ago they tried to reboot it is “The Great American Heroine.” I think it would work better if they kept some of the original elements of the show. It’s still so well know, man. People relish in the memories. The show was about dealing with the humanity of the character and less about the super hero aspect.

Sort of speaking to that, I let a few of my co-workers know that I was going to interview you. They immediately starting singing “Believe It Or Not” and talked about how they used to love the show so much.

It’s remarkable how a show that so short lived has endured all these years. It had to do with the wonderful song Mike Post wrote, which became a staple on American radio. The song was on George’s answering machine on “Seinfeld.” Seth McFarlane featured a parody of the show on “Family Guy.” Sheldon wore “The Greatest American Hero” shirt on “The Big Bang Theory” for a few seasons. All of those things combined really put that show and song into the forefront in recent memory.

Are you excited about your appearance at Monster Mania?

One of my favorite things is visiting with the fans. I do my very best to be present and listen to them. I love to talk and share stories with them as well. People don’t just come for an autograph. They want to tell you what your project meant in their lives and that’s very interesting to me.

William Katt will be appearing this Friday – Sunday at The Monster Mania Convention in Hunt Valley! Event Info/Tickets

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