Harper's Island's first victim was Uncle Marty, played by Harry Hamlin. And it was a doozey – he was hacked in half and left for dead. Hamlin, fortunately, is in better shape, and today he told us about his experiences on the set, and the perils of Mexican hat dancing.
What was it like to be the first victim on Harper's Island?
It was horrible. I was cut in half! That's painful. At the time, I was passing a kidney stone and I was on a lot of Oxycontin, so I didn't feel it that month. The opening scene, where I was stomping around with the Mariachi band, wearing a Mexican hat, it was the stomping that loosened the kidney stone up.
But it was a great experience to be the first one killed. I knew I would be the first when I took the job. I was very happy to do an "in and out" for the show.
Was it a fun shoot – other than the kidney stone?
The kidney stone was… memorable. But up until that happened – I had filmed all the meaty scenes before the stone started to come out – it was a blast. John Turtletaub, who was directing, was really the reason I did it. I really wanted to work with him. We had a great time together.
Was the death scene difficult to shoot?
Yeah it was horrible. The first blade hit, and one of my legs was chopped off, then the other one…. I tried to shoot the guy, but I missed. The fact is, that night that we shot that scene, I had probably taken at that point 10 to 12 Oxycontin, because that is right when I was passing the stone – that night. So I have very little memory of that night. Thank goodness, because it was raining and really cold, and four o'clock in the morning.
Were you able to pass the stone? Are you doing better now?
Yeah, I passed it, and I flushed it down the toilet. Then the next day, I found out William Shatner sold his kidney stone for $75,000. I flushed!
Do you know who the killer is?
Do you have any theories?
The only theory I have is that, whoever it is, it will be a complete and total shock. People will be trying to guess all the way up to the very end. The producers are very clever. When you finally find out who the killer is, you will think: "Wow, I never even thought of them!"
Were you back at the set at all, even after your demise?
I can't reveal that. I've been sworn to secrecy.
Is it hard to keep up so much secrecy?
No. It's easy – you just don't talk about it. If someone brings it up, you just say, "Sorry, I can't tell you."