Tonight, the television series Rizzoli & Isles will present its series finale on TNT after seven seasons. It was one of the highlights of my journey to guest star in Season 4, Episode 11, “Judge, Jury and Executioner” as Judge Kathleen Harper, the murder victim of the week.
The plot for the episode: “A mock trial advisor (guest star A’da Alison Woolfolk) dies tragically during a competition. Meanwhile, Angela’s increased interest in selling brownies has Jane concerned that she may be hiding financial issues. And Tommy (guest star Colin Egglesfield) hires a lawyer (guest star Chris Coppola) to settle his claim. Doug Savant also guest stars.”
As an actress, there have been many times in the past where shows of quality, popularity and interest have taken their final bow with me feeling saddened and regretful that I never had the opportunity to play with the cast and in the world of the show. Luckily, for me, this is not one of those times.
I had an incredible and blessed week on the show back in 2013 as Judge Harper. The main cast, guest cast and crew were extremely gracious, generous and welcoming to me throughout my week of shooting.
I will never forget how Lee Thompson Young (Detective Barry Frost) advised and guided me on how to find the most comfortable position in which to lay as a “corpse” so that I would survive take, after take, after take without trouble. (Sadly, not long after encountering his beautiful and gentle spirit on set, he would tragically take his own life.)
It was my absolute pleasure to spend a day rehearsing, laughing and shooting with fellow guest star Doug Savant of “Desperate Housewives” and the original “Melrose Place” fame. It is always inspiring as an actor on my own journey to get wisdom, advice and encouragement from a veteran actor who has been there and is willing to share lessons from their own path.
One of my favorite days on set was shooting my character’s autopsy scenes with the show’s stars Angie Harmon (Jane Rizzoli) and Sasha Alexander (Maura Isles). Having to remain completely still while listening to those two crack jokes and banter back and forth was a fun task. They were so wonderful to me and even both wailed, “Nooooooo!!!” genuinely sorry to see me leave when the director, Mark Haber, declared me wrapped for the episode.
Down to a person from Casting Director, Gary Zuckerberg and Casting Associate, Kamala A. Thomas; episode director, Mark Haber; the delightful make-up and hair team; wardrobe stylists; my own personal stunt coordinator, who taught me how to fall without hurting myself; the phenomenal ADs and PAs who took care of my every need as a guest actor for the week; and the craft services and catering teams; etc, etc, etc…it was a joy to collaborate with these wonderful artists in my time as Judge Kathleen Harper.
Although Rizzoli & Isles says it’s final goodbye tonight, it is my honor to have a place in the R&I family recorded on celluloid for the ages.
Congratulations to everyone who had the pleasure of bringing this show to life week after week for seven seasons. Job well done!
xoxo ~ A’da