Saturday, July 5, 2014

Complete UPDATED Biography

Shelley Hack: 
Complete UPDATED Biography
Shelley has led quite an interesting life.
Here's what she's done so far...

Kinda WOW!

Kinda WOW! is what she is. She has come a long way since her days as the family shortstop in Connecticut. She has become celebrated, has risen to prominence, has embarked on a reputable career and has achieved respect. Shelley Hack is an intelligent, well-educated, chic and beautiful woman who can disarm onlookers with her dazzling smile.


Shelley Marie Hack was born on July 6, 1947 in White Plains, New York; but she grew up in affluent Greenwich, Connecticut. Her father, William, was a chemical engineer who worked as a financial analyst on Wall Street. Her mother, Patricia, was a former airline stewardess and Conover Model.

She was a tomboy, but it was apparent that she had inherited the willowy, cosmopolitan beauty of her mother. The oldest of six children, she was the shortstop of the family baseball team which included Shannon, Torry, Shawn, Lance and Babe.

"It was a real nice upbringing, I wasn't spoiled," recalled Shelley. "I was always doing chores, folding diapers; and we all took care of the next youngest child." Her favorite childhood memory is "summer nights on the back porch talking to my two brothers and three sisters."


When Shelley Hack was 17, someone spotted her at a debutante ball and urged her to try modeling. By then, she was already 5 feet 7 inches tall and 112 pounds. Also by then, she already had strength of character and possessed the glamour and style of old Hollywood. Shelley's blonde blue-eyed look was clean, fresh and open. Plus, she had that dazzling smile. She had a well-scrubbed look that could make her a cover girl.

"This guy kept bothering me," Shelley looked back, “The man was a guy named Huntington Hartford, who had a magazine." Shelley recalled. “He told my father that I was a new face.” To which her father replied, “She’s not a new face around here, and I wish she’d take out the garbage and wash the dishes.”

As it turned out, George Huntington Hartford II, the heir to the A&P supermarket empire, really had a magazine; it was called Show. He had pictures of Shelley taken on a Friday. Then she was asked to come back Monday the week after; but she thought he was kidding. Shelley said, "Monday morning it was summer. I was going sailing. And the phone rang, and it was this photographer and he said, 'Where are you?'" She said the photographer “called when I didn’t show up and said, ‘You’re supposed to be here for a cover test for Glamour magazine.’” So Shelley whipped down to the shoot with her hair still wet.

On September 1964, 17-year-old Shelley graced the pages of Show magazine in a spread entitled, "Shelley Hack: A Show First." The accompanying article read "the first published pictures of Shelley Hack, a young lady you'll see more, much more of soon." It also mentioned that Shelley was a high school student who planned to go to college before deciding which career to pursue.

The pictures were so successful that she was asked to go to New York where she met Eileen Ford, the matriarch of Ford Models, Inc. Shelley said, “She barely looked at me, but at the end of the meeting, she turned and said, “We’ll be expecting you at 9 o’clock tomorrow.’” On November of that year, her face appeared simultaneously on the covers of Seventeen and Glamour magazines.

As the Show article predicted, Shelley became one of the most visible teen models around. She appeared on numerous magazine covers, editorials and print advertisements. "I was brought up not to close doors," said Shelley, "Modeling was a great summer job. It beat waitressing."

Modeling remained a sideline however, as Shelley concentrated on her studies. Shelley said, “The Ford Agency would send out a little card that said, ‘Shelley Hack will be back June 1.’”

In high school, her favorites were:

Subject: French
Actors: Paul Newman, Steve McQueen and Natalie Wood
Movie: Goldfinger
Singers: Johnny Mathis, Dionne Warwick and The Supremes
TV show: The Man from U.N.C.L.E.
Outfit: Levi's
Place: Bermuda
College: Yale
Sport: skiing
Pastime: socializing

She graduated from the private Greenwich Academy in 1965 and went on to Smith College. "When they say 'upper crust' it sounds so silly - most of the girls there were on scholarship," said Shelley.

In 1968, upon reaching her junior year at Smith, she decided to take a year off and study archaeology at the University of Sydney in Australia ("Smithies go to bed at 10 P.M.," she jested.) But she wanted her trip to be credited as part of her college curriculum. Her parents gave her permission to go, but the college dean went, "What?" Shelley recalled, "I told him I wanted to get away for a year on my own bat and Smith College had a fit." The dean never heard of Sydney University and, at first, wanted her to leave and not give the remainder of her tuition back. But she was able to justify her decision, and, in the end, the school gave her credit for the course.

Her "year off" included a trip around the world. "I spent a month getting to Australia and two months coming back," she said. "My mother worried that I'd end up in some flea-bag hotel in Bangkok," she added.

After a year, Shelley, who is fluent in French and Danish, returned to Smith and graduated in 1970 with a degree in History. Six months later, the dean of Smith College wrote to Shelley for advice on programs similar to hers for girls who wanted to attend Sydney University. And later still, Smith College proudly informed her that they had hired a president from Sydney University.


A third-floor walk-up in New York City’s Greenwich Village was her next destination. Shelley, by then a beautiful young woman, had grown into her full height, 5 feet 8 inches, the average height of most working models. She then signed on full-time with Ford Models Inc.

Her mother, a former model herself, taught her to respect her face and figure. "The clients respond to my all-American face," Shelley told Cosmopolitan magazine in 1974. She explained, "Models look at themselves differently than other women. I used to look in the mirror and just stare and reflect. (Now) I'm interested in what needs repairing. Is my shadow running? Have my cheeks started to pale?" If so, she would take out her make-up bag and "repair" in a hurry. Modeling came naturally her.

"It doesn't mean I don't have problems" she said, "First of all, there are my glasses. I have adjusted to seeing without them. That is, I've learned to relax without my glasses, so the expression on my face doesn't look strained." She added, "And then there is my face, which I think of as irregular. My smile is crooked and so is my nose. I correct my crooked nose by using a little brown shadow down the center. There is very little I can do about my smile except control the upper left side without looking stiff." She stressed that "It's my professional obligation to my client to look my best."

Shelley added, "As far as (my father) was concerned, I was in business, the business of selling my face." And her face was everywhere – magazine covers, magazine editorials, catalogs, commercials and print ads. Her face graced the covers and pages of many major magazines in the world including Seventeen, Glamour, Look, Mademoiselle, Elle, Harper's Bazaar and Vogue. She appeared in catalogs - Sears, JCPenney, Montgomery Ward, Spiegel and so much more. She did hair ads for Clairol, Sun-in and Breck; beauty ads for Germaine Montiel, Yardley, Clinique, Chanel, Natural Wonder by Revlon and Cover Girl; clothing ads for Bobbie Brooks, Vicky Vaughn, Lee, Halston and many, many more. She appeared on mattress ads, pattern packages and utility packages. She did clothes, cosmetics, furs – almost everything. She worked so hard that by 1974, she ranked among the Top Models in the United States.

When asked how she got to the top of her profession, Shelley's deduced, "I was a success because I was hard-working, professional, bright. I looked at the business and identified the markets. I knew the key was that they always wanted someone new. I decided to hit one market one year, then cut my hair and hit another. Then let it grow and hit television. I thought it through. The game plan can apply to any business, but especially to one where you're the product. You just have to become objective about yourself."

She was one of the hardest working models of her batch. "Shelley doesn't swing or run to discos," said Steen Svensson, a Manhattan photographer who had a six-year romance with her.

Eileen Ford said of Shelley, "She is a very good model and an intelligent, well-educated lady." Ford added, "Modeling was just a vehicle she used to get educated. It was never a thing where she wanted to be the best model in the world. She simply became one of them despite herself."

But little did Shelley know that her profile as a model was soon to escalate to an even loftier stratosphere.


1973 saw the introduction of the Charlie fragrance, tailor-made by Revlon for the modern, working woman. In 1976, after a string of other models, Shelley signed a ground-breaking exclusive modeling contract with Revlon. She was hand-picked to represent the Revlon Charlie brand, as she was the embodiment the brand's ideal – gorgeous, sexy and young.

An ad campaign like no other (at the time) was put together, and advertising history was made. A commercial was filmed with her striding confidently, smiling dazzlingly and looking utterly fabulous on a night out in New York – a FREE and INDEPENDENT young woman. In the background, Bobby Short was singing, "Kinda young, Kinda now, Charlie… Kinda free, Kinda WOW! Charlie!" The lifestyle commercial (one of the first of its kind) featured Shelley as the embodiment of not just the modern, working woman but of the free, independent, liberated and successful woman as well.

When her commercial debuted, it was an immediate and immense hit. Overnight, Shelley became known as THE Charlie Girl and the campaign, supported by print ads and personal appearances, was a huge success. By 1977, Charlie became the #1 fragrance in the world (the first American-made international bestseller) and Revlon sales figures passed the $1 billion mark.

Shelley told Playboy, "Once, on a promotional tour, I was talking with a guy at a radio station and he wanted to know why my Charlie perfume commercials for Revlon were so successful. I suggested we make it the call-in question, because I was curious myself. The women respondents said that this girl walking into a restaurant alone - which most women are afraid to do - looking chic, but not too chic, seemed like somebody they would like to know or to be. I was their idea of a modern, liberated but not threatening woman. The men thought I was someone they would like to go out with; again, modern, not brassy and someone who, if they met me, would talk to them. Men complain about women who can't talk."

Shelley became a sort of poster girl for the modern, gorgeous, sexy, young woman in charge of her own life; and everyone wanted to be a Charlie Girl. For almost seven years (1976 to 1982), she was the image model of Revlon Charlie; so much so that Shelley and Revlon Charlie became synonymous.

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Because of Charlie, Shelley now ranked among a handful of SuperModels (including Lauren Hutton and Iman also for Revlon, Margaux Hemingway for Babe, Karen Graham for Estee Lauder, Christina Ferrare for Bristol-Myers and Cheryl Tiegs for Cover Girl) who were able to negotiate such previously "unheard of" lucrative and exclusive deals with the giant cosmetics companies of the era, and whose names became known to the public. In October 1981, Life magazine proclaimed her (along with the aforementioned models) as one of the million dollar faces in the beauty industry. She was now at the very top of her game. Shelley Hack had become one of the celebrated SuperModels of the ‘70s.

But the successful SuperModel kept her feet on the ground. "My father encouraged me to invest my money," she recalled. So Shelley put her earnings into a 244-acre farm in Catskill, New York. "It's dairy county, not chic," she told People magazine in 1979. "It's a nice contrast to put on my barn clothes and go out and slosh."


Her fame as THE Charlie Girl opened Hollywood doors for Shelley Hack (While she was modeling, she was also studying acting in New York, at the Herbert Berghof Studios under Jack Wolzer.) Her acting debut was as a memorable bit role as a vacuous WASP in the 1977 Academy Award winning Woody Allen film Annie Hall (Her line, "I'm very shallow and empty and I have no ideas and nothing interesting to say," elicited a ton of laughter).

In 1978, she got her first leading lady role opposite screenwriter, director, producer, and composer Joe Brooks in the film If Ever I See You Again (which spawned the hit single with the same title - as interpreted by Roberta Flack). "A bomb!" she would later admit.

Also, Shelley was also under consideration for the role of Holly Goodhead in the James Bond film Moonraker (She may have even been the leading contender at the time. Shelley agreed to a screen test, but a chance encounter between Lois Chiles and director Lewis Gilbert took the casting in a different direction and Chiles won the role.)

1979 bought Shelley a guest role in the TV series, Married: the First Year. Also in '79, she declined to be cast as leading lady in the feature film, Time After Time, which was directed by her then boyfriend Nicholas Meyer. "After all, our relationship just started -what if we broke up in two months? He would have to be stuck directing me," Shelley explained. She settled for a much smaller “voice over” role in the film instead (and they did eventually break up.) She also snagged the lead in a TV movie with a very memorable title Death Car On The Freeway.

But that wasn't the biggest news of 1979.


The mega-hit TV series Charlie's Angels, a Spelling-Goldberg production, was entering its fourth season in 1979 and was looking for a replacement for exiting cast member Kate Jackson. A long search was on with many beautiful women (models and actresses) auditioning for the role of the cool, chic, classy and smart Tiffany Welles, Charlie's newest Angel.

Shelley Hack said, "I remember there was a big Angel hunt going on, and they asked me to audition. The hunt seemed to go on for a long time. A lot of my girlfriends went in to be tested, but I wasn't involved until sometime later when my agent called and said, 'It's a terrific show - you really should think about testing.' So, I thought about it again and went in.’"

Allen Baron, one of the series regular directors, handled her screen test. Shelley said that they wanted her to wear shorts and high heels, which, coming from the fashion world, she found a bit hilarious. "I was so new to it all that I didn't know to wear stockings or not," she said. She was also subjected to a personality test.

But while Aaron Spelling, one of the executive producers of the series, was thinking of the new Charlie's Angel, the name Charlie always immediately brought Shelley Hack's face to his mind. Although her acting experience, so far, was brief (but great acting was not the top criteria for "Angel-dom"), Shelley received topmost consideration due to her impeccable background. She was a bright young woman with a high I.Q. from upscale Greenwich, Connecticut. She had a history degree from Smith (a classy East Coast college.) And, because of her Charlie endorsements, she was already one of the most recognizable faces in the world. And, of course, there was that dazzling smile (By then, it the second most famous smile of the 70's. The first was Farrah Fawcett's who was also a Charlie's Angel.)

"I begged Aaron to hire Shelley. There was something about her I really liked; I was impressed with her Charlie perfume commercials and how she could create a look just by turning her collar up and putting her hands in her pockets. I helped her with her audition because she knew how to wear clothes; and I knew I would enjoy working with her," said Nolan Miller, the wardrobe designer on the series, "Shelley came to the studio and everyone in wardrobe fell in love with her and I begged Aaron, please hire her; She's so chic and she's so great and no matter what she wears. We put her in a white shirt and something and she'd push the sleeves up and turn up the collar and she just looked fantastic. And we pleaded and begged; and Aaron finally said okay."

Soon-to-be-co-star Jaclyn Smith, who was consulted on the final selection of the new Angel, also recommended Shelley. Jaclyn said, "I selected her because she was spunky and a perfect fill-in for Kate."

In her Los Angeles hotel, rushing from the shower, a hyperventilating Shelley answered her phone. It was her agent. He said Spelling wanted to see her in 20 minutes. At the meeting, Aaron Spelling said, "We'd like you to be the new Angel." "That's very nice," was Shelley’s reply.


The announcement came soon after – SHELLEY HACK IS THE NEW CHARLIE'S ANGEL. Rushed by reporters, she knew that she would be under siege from then on. "I'm a very private person and I hope to keep it that way. I'm prepared for the gossip and rumors," she told one reporter, "I was surprised by the amount of attention, but I had done a lot of press before. There was so much to do then, so you just deal with it."

"Spelling pictured Shelley as a young Kate Hepburn, in baggy pants and Oxfords," said Ed Lakso, a writer/producer on the show, "Believe it or not, the headline, "Charlie Girl becomes the new Charlie's Angel," carried a lot of weight."

"We hired her 40 percent from the screen test and 60 percent from the personality test," Spelling told TV Guide, "We decided she was a nice person with sparkle and intelligence."

The proclamation of Shelley Hack as Charlie's newest Angel made her a Hollywood superstar overnight. Her face appeared on virtually every magazine in the world and was even mentioned in the evening news. "I couldn't believe it. What was I doing in the evening news?" Shelley exclaimed. (She was also set to guest star on the Love Boat, another Spelling hit series.) In St. Thomas, at the Caribbean, where the Charlie's Angels season opener was to be shot, she described, surprised, "When I got off the plane, there were maybe eight million paparazzi. I looked around for Sophia Loren. It was for me. I couldn't believe it."

According to People Magazine, Shelley Hack as Tiffany Welles was going to bring a classy "Tiffany touch" to the series. "We're bringing back the glamour," proclaimed Spelling and Charlie's new trio (Shelley with Jaclyn Smith and Cheryl Ladd, who two years earlier replaced Farrah Fawcett's empty slot in the series) was molded into a sophisticated-looking team.

Her new co-star Cheryl Ladd said, "Shelley seemed like a doll and we were going to have a lot of fun working together."

“She was sort of like the debutante" Jaclyn Smith said about the highly-charged, energetic and intellectual East Coast girl.

"Jackie, Cheryl and I hit it off immediately." Shelley said, "Put your ear to the wall, all you'll hear is laughter."

But Ed Lakso was skeptical. "My reaction was - you guys are out of your minds. I told Aaron that I want to go on record saying that this is a big mistake."


On September 12, 1979, Charlie's Angels fourth season debut episode, “Love Boat Angels,” topped the Nielsen ratings, and the addition of Shelley Hack had revived interest in the show (Charlie's Angels had slipped significantly from # 4 to # 12 in the ratings on its third season in 1978.) The September 18 issue of Us Weekly predicted that the series, with Shelley Hack on board, would be one of the biggest hits on the "tube" in the upcoming season.

By then, Shelley had become one busy woman. She was managing two demanding careers. She had a modelling contract to fulfill with Revlon (as their Charlie Girl) so she had to fly to New York some days of the week. Then, she had to go back to LA to fulfill her acting contract with Charlie’s Angels. As a neophyte star, she had photo shoots, interviews, personal appearances and many other things in her plate.

When asked whether she liked being a TV star, Shelley said, "Yes. I've got two parking spaces with my name on them. It's wonderful. Someone on the set asked me if I was scared, but it never even occurred to me. Before joining the cast, I thought the show was very well-produced. Really, it's a wonderful tongue-in-cheek fantasy; three terrific-looking girls running around packing pistols. And it's funny." As always, Shelley was up for the challenge.

But as the new Angel, Shelley wasn't given the same airtime Cheryl Ladd got when she became the new Angel two years back. In fact, Shelley wasn't even given the spotlight in her debut episode “Love Boat Angels.”

THE OFFICIAL EXPLANATION: Spelling-Goldberg was ready to go with only two Angels so the third Angel was written sparingly. “We want to introduce the new Angel gradually.” THE TRUTH: According to Ed Lakso, the persona of Tiffany and the performance of Shelley did not create the desired effect. During the filming of the first episode, he kept changing the script around so much that Cheryl was getting all the lines. "They (Jaclyn & Cheryl) said I was cheating Shelley. I danced around it because I didn't want to say that Shelley couldn't act, but I stuck with the revisions." Lakso explained.

According to Nolan Miller, "(Shelley) had a great fashion sense and she knew how to wear clothes, she wasn't the most cooperative or the most pleasant person for us to deal with." Also, he later said, laughing, “We kept, daily, wanting to get rid of her."

Shelley was left so far in the background in the earlier episodes of the season that, in some of those episodes, she was almost forgotten. Furthermore, the solo episodes of Jaclyn and Cheryl were aired early in the season (Due to the request of the cast for more time off, solo episodes, episodes focusing on one Angel, were produced.) Shelley's first solo episode, “Angels on Campus,” was the 10th original episode of the season and was aired on the 12th week. After all that hype upon the announcement of her Angel-dom, Shelley Hack was sadly reduced to mere decoration early in the season. She was given little to say or do. Angels director Allen Baron said, "I felt bad for her because she wasn't integrated into the group."


TV critics lambasted Shelley Hack and the scripts weren't helping; plus, the ratings started sagging. It started at #1 with “Love Boat Angels.” Then after three episodes at the top 10, it began to descend to the 20's, and then to the 30's. This prompted the writers to play up her role, but it was too late.

Surprisingly, she did very well in these later episodes; but, unfortunately, many viewers had lost interest in the show. After so much anticipation, the extremely disappointed fans didn't get to see enough material on her to embrace her character like they did Cheryl Ladd's two years earlier.

The verdict: she was let go at the end of the season. (FYI: In spite of everything, in the Nielsen ratings, the fourth season of Charlie's Angels still finished within TV's top 20 shows of 1979, at # 18, tied with Chips)

The "disappointing" season was unfairly blamed on Shelley and everything from her acting, her attitude, her voice and even her hair were cited as the reason for the shows slip in the ratings. And everybody jumped on that bandwagon.

Her predecessor, Kate Jackson, was interviewed in 1980 on the Mike Douglas Show; and she said she felt awful about the way the public was treating Shelley. Kate said that Shelley Hack had talent and it was a tragedy that the series wasn't able to make better use of it.

"I hate to see her go," said Cheryl Ladd. "I really don't understand the decision," Cheryl told People Magazine. "Well, we were really upset about it, Jaclyn and I both, about her going and we let that be voiced."

Cheryl, who felt great empathy for Shelley, said. "I think they got a little overly confident that it would turn out alright. They didn't really hone who that character should be. They were not, perhaps, as diligent with it as they should have been. They didn't help her enough because she was just, sort of a... someone that just didn't fit into scripts already written. And they hadn't really focused on who Tiffany should be and what she should add to the group. I think poor Shelley suffered from that and that was a shame, but I certainly don't think it was all Shelley's fault," explained Cheryl Ladd.

 "There was a whole bunch of things going on that Shelley took a lot of shit for, that she didn't deserve. I feel too much blame was put on her and maybe not enough on the writers," Cheryl added, "She was just a really hard working, nice girl drawn into a very difficult situation... They were really unkind. It was sad; and I thought very unfair."

"Actresses, designers, producers; all see it differently. She was my friend. We worked together..." Jaclyn Smith said saddened by Shelley's departure.

"Cheryl, Jackie and I feel we've all been lucky to be friends with someone like Shelley," said David Doyle, the show’s only male lead. He also hated to see Shelley go.

They "can say I didn't work out, but it isn't true. What happened was a network war. A business decision was made. Change the time slot or bring in some publicity. How to get publicity? A new Angel hunt. Who is the obvious person to replace? I am — the new kid on the block," Shelley told People in 1980.

But no matter, Charlie's Angels was at the end of its run. After one more season, as another new Angel, Tanya Roberts, took over from Shelley, it plunged even deeper to #59 and was canceled.

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In Defense

A Fan Defends Shelley


In 1981, with her Revlon Charlie contract on its tail end, with her modeling career winding down and with her publicity "jump-start" (believe it or not) from Charlie's Angels, Shelley Hack seriously pursued an acting career - beginning with a stage play at the Westside Playhouse in Los Angeles.

Alongside Meredith Baxter Birney and Annette O' Toole, she starred in the Jack Heifner play Vanities filmed on stage for HBO's Standing Room Only. “I don't know how I got the guts to go right into a play immediately after leaving the series,” Shelley said. "I started doing theater for the first time in my life although I'd never been on a stage before." She added, “I didn't want to leave Los Angeles without doing something good.”

And her gamble paid off. She stood out in the play and got great reviews. She even won over her biggest detractor (Charlie's Angels writer/producer Ed Lakso) with her performance. "One year after the show, I saw Shelley in the stage play Vanities, and she did a wonderful job," Lakso said.

On that same year, she tried her hand at voice-acting. She was a featured guest in Rich Little's comedy album, First Family Rides Again.

After Vanities, she went to back to New York to study acting with Lee Strasberg.

In the next couple of years, to steer herself further away from the Charlie's Angels bimbo image and the “stigma” that came with it, Shelley endeavored to develop a positive acting reputation by accepting varied roles - both on stage and on screen. As a result, she began getting noticed for her acting.

In 1982, Shelley continued tackling live theater to further hone her acting chops. "I guess I did get spunky," Shelley said, "I decided I was going to run my own life."

She went back to Los Angeles to film another stage play for TV, Elizabeth Diggs's Close Ties, a Los Angeles Public Theater production which was presented at the Coronet Theatre in LA. Co-starring Kim Darby, the play was directed by Arvin Brown, the artistic director for the Long Wharf Theater in New Haven, Connecticut. She got excellent reviews.

Then she went back East to Allentown, Pennsylvania to star in Garson Kanin’s play, Born Yesterday. Staged by the renowned Pennsylvania Stage Company, the play ran from September 29 to October 24 of 1982.

As the play’s leading character Billie Dawn, Shelley was cast against type, but she brought a fresh and interesting twist to the role. "She's a woman who starts out as one thing and ends up as something else," Shelley said of her role. "That's always a challenge." she added.

"Not to be in the national limelight, but to be an actor" was always her priority, so Shelley was very appreciative of the chance to play Billie. And her performance surprised many critics. She received glowing reviews. 

She was also cast in the Martin Scorsese film The King of Comedy with Robert de Niro and Jerry Lewis, where she played the latter's talent coordinator. "I couldn't work because I read for The King of Comedy, and got the part. The picture was delayed and I couldn't take a chance on doing anything else."

During filming, Shelley was rumored to be dating Al Pacino. According to tabloids, the two were introduced to each other by Robert De Niro; and they hit it off right away. It was reported that they fell for each other; and the two would spend romantic dinners together and would visit each other at work. The temperamental Pacino was reported to have changed his ways due to Shelley. Neither party confirmed or denied the reports.

Her performance in The King of Comedy received glowing reviews. As one critic put it, "Shelley Hack shines as an unpleasant talent coordinator trying to make Pupkin (de Niro's character) understand her polite rejections." Her hard work was finally paying off.

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The World Will Know Rupert Pupkin

Shelley was on a roll and in July of '82, she appeared on the TV series The American Sportsman where she participated in the darting and tagging of a Nepal Tiger.

In 1983, she co-starred in a couple of TV movies with some of Hollywood's most respected veterans, Trackdown: Finding the Goodbar Killer with George Segal and Found Money with Sid Caesar and Dick Van Dyke. "I really had a time with Dick and Sid," she said. "Like George Segal, these great pros are technically adept and generous."


Also in 1983, alongside actors Jim Metzler and then newcomer Alec Baldwin, Shelley was cast as Doctor Beth Gilbert in the CBS drama series Cutter to Houston. Its premise, three young doctors with markedly different backgrounds and motives are recruited to run a small hospital in the small Texas town of Cutter; when they run into medical problems that their local facility can't handle, they contact the Texas Medical Center in Houston. Shelley met with women surgeons at New York hospitals to prepare for her role.

But while the series had great potential, the network decided to veer away from the series' original direction. "Shelley Hack and I and an actor named Jim Metzler, who's a friend of mine, did a medical series, Cutter to Houston, which could have been interesting if they had stuck to what they said they were going to do," said Alec Baldwin. As a result, Cutter to Houston was canceled after only seven episodes with two finished episodes left un-aired. But in spite of its short run, some critics gave the series a thumbs up.

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Cutter to Houston

The NBC TV comedy series Night Court was being renewed for a second season in 1984 and Shelley was set to play Public Defender Christine Sullivan. As before, in preparation for her new television role, Shelley spent time at the Manhattan Criminal Court. With guidance from the Legal Aid Society of New York, she spent most of Thursday evening watching people accused of a variety of crimes - robbery, assault, prostitution - being arraigned. "Even though it's a comedic role, I still like to get in touch with the reality that it's based on," Shelley said. "What goes on at the court is not funny. It's tragic and very moving." She watched the goings-on from one of the courtroom's wooden benches. Filling the seats around her were the worried friends and family of defendants. Did they notice the actress sitting nearby? "No," Shelley said. "I think they had other things on their mind.

But after two and a half days of filming, either the network or the producers felt that she wasn't right for the part. She was replaced by the time the series went back on the air. "There's no mystery about it," Shelley said in an interview. "I liked the show. They offered me the role. I went and met them and liked them. But what happened was the role was changed somewhere between that meeting and my first day on the set." Shelley explained, "Instead of a funny lady, as she was in the reading, they had changed her into a straight woman."

Undaunted, Shelley moved on to her next project – a TV movie with Paul Michael Glaser called Single Bars, Single Women. It was a dramedy focusing on the singles bar scene and Shelley received good reviews. It was directed by Harry Winer, who was to be somewhere in Shelley's romantic future.

The next year, Shelley accepted the role of Maggie Pierson in the TV movie Kicks. She was top-billed with soap superstar Anthony Geary. Tom Mason was cast as her boyfriend and David Levinson (a former Charlie's Angels producer) wrote and produced. "Miss Hack, once one of Charlie's Angels, monopolizes most of the screen time. The role is strenuous and she fleshes it out, well, energetically," John O'Conner reviewed. After all her previous triumphs, the Angels “stigma” still loomed.

In 1985 and 1986, Shelley tried her hand at being "scream queen." She starred in two horror flicks, Troll and The Stepfather. Both films have since received a cult following,

Filmed in 1985, Troll was a fantasy/adventure feature film about a family that moved into an apartment building that was soon to be the site of a centuries-old battle between a witch and a troll. The film featured many former and upcoming TV stars like Shelley, Sonny Bono, Gary Sandy, Michael Moriarty, Julia Louis-Dreyfus and June Lockhart. Jenny Beck and teen heartthrob Noah Hathaway were cast as the kids. The film catered to little children, so the gore and horror were kept in check. Shelley was sunny and delightful in her role as the mother of the two kids.

But it was in the latter film, The Stepfather, where Shelley got praise for her performance.
Filmed in 1986, the film was listed by Entertainment Weekly magazine as one of the “The 25 Scariest Movies of All Time.” The magazine said, "Shelley Hack also puts in a fine turn as a woman who loses patience with her psychopath husband and wayward daughter. Check out the scene where she smacks her teen across the face and shrieks, ‘He's your father now and you'll respect him!’" Another writer commented, "It has the perfunctory male psycho-lead (Terry O'Quinn, of Millennium and X-Files), the 'can she really be this in the dark' blonde wife (Shelley Hack---type casting at its finest), and Jill Schoelen as the cute little step-daughter with that something extra…all way above average."

For more info check out:
The Stepfather


Also in 1986, network giant ABC picked up a pilot called Jack and Mike - starring Shelley Hack and Tom Mason as the title characters. In this new TV series, which was set in Chicago, Shelley had the chance to show that she was a capable lead performer.

On September 16, 1986, ABC scheduled Jack and Mike immediately after the popular series Moonlighting to give this new series a boost. The first few episodes received decent ratings, so ABC ordered more new episodes.

For their November 29 to December 5 issue, TV Guide put both Shelley Hack and Tom Mason on the cover with the headline "Shelley Hack, One More Time: This Model Turned Actress Gets Her Shot At TV Success". With good ratings and enough publicity, the series was off to a good start.

"She's a treat," co-star Tom Mason told TV Guide. On the set, Shelley was known to be a kind person, a sister to the crew and staff. According to TV Guide, “When a grip found a sparrow with a broken wing, she called a vet. When a crewmember couldn't decide whether or not to end a romance, she took out a pad and said, ‘Let's make a list of what you like and don't like about the relationship.’ Any time you were near her motor home (a place so folksy strangers walked up and peered in - the antithesis of the icy sanctuary of a reclusive star), she offered you a chewable vitamin C tablet.”

As one assistant director put it, "Most star actresses have this veneer - for some reason they need to keep their distance, but not Shelley." Shelley’s former makeup artist Kim Phillips said, "The work is grueling, but Shelley actually makes the 16 hour days fun."

The only thing that made Shelley upset were questions about her past. "Not another article about Charlie's Angels," she would moan, "You're trying to cast me as a bubblehead." Shelley explained, “Every interviewer talks to me like I'm back from the dead. I became famous overnight and I hadn't done anything. One day I woke up and my face was on the cover of every magazine in America. If that happens again, at least I will feel like I've done something to cause it."

But it seemed Chicago Bears tight end Tim Wrightman kept Shelley’s head cool. She was seen with Wrightman around Chicago on many occasions. He even showed up at the Billy Goat Tavern to watch a scene that was being shot for Jack and Mike. Shelley and Tim denied any romantic involvement, but tongues kept wagging up until Wrightman bade farewell to Chicago and returned to UCLA for his degree in early 1987.

From 1986 to 1987, Shelley was busy with Jack and Mike. Developing its own character and style, the series became a charming companion piece to Moonlighting. One writer said that Jack and Mike was unique, wonderful, a charming mix of The Thin Man (William Powell & Myrna Loy) mystery/conflict. It was a woefully underrated series with wonderful repartee and great Chicago scenery. It was unique and wonderful. Detractors grudgingly acknowledged that Shelley Hack and Tom Mason were very good in the show. "With good TV vehicles; even lesser known actors like Shelley and Tom could shine." one writer put it. The series was expected to be around for quite a while; but by mid-1987, ABC surprisingly canceled the series.

For more info check out:
Jack and Mike


When Jack and Mike ended, Shelley Hack was poised to tackle another huge endeavor – this time of the romantic kind. "Someone I want has to ask me to marry him. No one has – not yet," Shelley said in the past. But someone finally did, and that man was director Harry Winer. The two had been seen together around town since 1985. It is believed that the two privately tied the knot sometime in the early ‘90s.

From 1989 to 1990, Shelley went back to work. She did two TV movies, the delightful Bridesmaids with Sela Ward and Brooke Adams and Frederick Forsyth Presents A Casualty of War with British actor David Threlfall. She did a feature film, Blind Fear, where she was cast as the lead; and she participated in the celebrity special Celebrity Guide to Wine.

In 1989, she was cast as Luisa Baccara in the long-running ground-breaking John Krizanc play Tamara at the Il Vittoriale in Los Angeles. "Basically, I get to chew the rug for 2 hours," she said. Luisa "starts out crazy and gets crazier." The audience-participation play had its audience free to physically follow any character within the play. "There's everything you have in a regular play - lines, blocking, other actors," Shelley said, "But it's also very different. For instance, if you and I have a scene in a room that's supposed to run 3 minutes, and it turns into 4, then you're late--and the person downstairs you're supposed to meet is also a minute late. So it can all fall down like bowling pins."

Shelley said, "I love theater. I thought it would be fun, and it is." But then, she suddenly took a necessary hiatus for a very special reason – motherhood.

On November 19, 1990, Shelley and Harry became proud parents to their daughter, Devon Rose Winer. And as she always wanted, Shelley enjoyed motherhood and quiet private time with her new family.

In 1991, Shelley joined the infomercial circuit via a David Kibbe makeover video. The infomercial was called “Talk of the Town.” David Kibbe, a famous beauty expert, came up with videos that help bring out the beauty in every woman through hair, makeup, and clothing. "We are going to explore one of the hot topics sweeping the 90's: beauty makeovers” Shelley said in the infomercial.

Then Shelley went back to acting, but this time steered away from series TV (except for some guest roles) and accepted mostly supporting parts.

From 1991 to 1993, Shelley appeared in two feature films - a thriller, The Finishing Touch and a comedy, Me, Myself and I; and four TV movies - Frederick Forsyth's A Casualty of War, Taking Back My Life: The Nancy Ziegenmeyer Story, Shattering the Silence and Perry Mason: The Case of The Wicked Wives. In 1993, she participated in another celebrity special, Celebrity Guide to Entertaining.

Also in 1993, Shelley appeared on the pilot episode of the Steven Spielberg produced TV series SeaQuest DSV. Cast against type, she played Captain Marilyn Stark, the vengeful former captain of SeaQuest (a deep submergence vehicle - DSV) who was out to destroy it and everyone in it. The episode was reported to cost two million dollars to make and was the most expensive at the time. But that didn’t matter. NBC, the network that aired it, picked it up. Shelley didn’t appear in any more episodes, because her character was assumed killed in the pilot.
In 1994, Shelley did memorable guest roles in two hit series. In the hit series L.A. Law, she appeared in the episode “Whose San Andreas Fault is it Anyway?” She played Lynn Barnett, an ad exec sued for sexual harassment by a copywriter she had an affair with. It was quite a departure from the usual sexual harassment case because the roles were reversed - the woman harassed the man. On HBO’s Tales from the Crypt, she appeared in the episode “The Assassin” where she played a former assassin whose disguise nobody could ever see through. The episode was and is considered one of the best of the entire series.

In 1994, armed with her impeccable diction, she participated in the audio book The Big Book of Our Planet.

In 1995, Shelley appeared in a TV movie based on a true story, Freefall: Flight 174. The gripping film explored the goings-on aboard a passenger plane that mysteriously lost power mid-flight. 

In 1996, she narrated an audio version of the Catherine Coulter novel, Lord of Hawkfell Island.

Also in 1996, Shelley starred in a TV movie about a bigamous airline pilot entitled Frequent Flyer. Also based on a true story, the movie beat out The People's Choice Awards in the ratings when the both shows were simultaneously aired. She also did a cameo in the movie House Arrest which was directed by her husband Harry. In 1997, she guest starred in an episode of the Dick van Dyke series Diagnosis Murder.

In 1997, Shelley did another infomercial; this time for TheraCel (a unique new skin care regimen.) This "skin care system tightens skin, moisturizes, and reduces wrinkles," she testified. Within one week of national rollout, the TheraCel infomercial was ranked at #5 on the infomercial charts. The infomercial had generated tremendous initial and continuity sales and received awards of recognition from the prestigious Jordan Whitney firm. The campaign had since generated close to $10 million in product sales to date.


In the 1990's, as her acting career stalled and eventually winded down, Shelley Hack started focusing on other ventures.

Having been the national chairperson, back in 1987, for the National Lung Association’s and American Medical Association’s campaign to get young women to stop smoking, she started taking a more political role in women’s causes. She became active in the National Women's Political Caucus and became a member of The Westside Women's Health Center Advisory Council (The Westside Women's Health Center offers a preventive and education-based approach to providing health care for more than 8,000 at-risk women and their families each year). Consequently, she started delving into grassroots politics in L.A.

In 1994, she set her sights on a county Democratic Central Committee seat in the Westside and San Fernando Valley district; but she was disqualified. She came down with the flu; so she asked someone else to take over the signature-gathering needed to secure her a seat. But the man who did it didn’t live in the 41st District (a requirement) so it rendered all the signatures he gathered invalid. But Shelley wasn’t disappointed. "My concern is less elective office and politics," she said, "My concern is community service, and there's plenty to do."

Also, she began to take an active role in political fund-raising. She began performing extensive work in national, state and municipal election organization and registration - focusing on bringing women into the political process. She gained vast experience working with American political candidates and in the political process of the United States in her home state by then, California.

She received her MBA from the New York Institute of Technology (NYIT) and, in 1997, she formed Shelley Hack Media Consultancy (SHMC) a media consultancy firm that worked in pre- and post-conflict countries. It was a company that internationally specialized on projects that focused on the intersection between media and the development of civil society. She would go into war-torn countries and help them establish democracy through media, which was often done with the help of televised political debates. "I have a consultancy company, and I basically do institution building in post-conflict countries" she told one reporter later. And in 1997, she started in Bosnia-Herzegovina.

The Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE), which was responsible for conducting elections in Bosnia-Herzegovina, hired her to produce the first-ever televised presidential debates to be held in the war-torn country.

Shelley said, “It's pretty hard, if you've never been a democracy before. It's learned and earned.” Shelley added, "When I did the first televised debate in Bosnia, the candidates looked at me like 'Why should we debate?’" No one knew what to say or ask, so Shelley took in questions via a call-in radio show.

Aside from the Bosnia debates, she produced other televised debates - in Sarajevo, Mostar and the two in Banja Luka. Then she became a registration and polling station supervisor in the 1997 Bosnia-Herzegovina elections.

In 1998, although she attended President Bill Clinton and First Lady Hillary Clinton’s fund raiser in Los Angeles to help raise money for the Democratic Party, she dropped out of the local L.A. political scene to become more involved with media consulting in Bosnia-Herzegovina.

Consequently, she worked to "restructure the media sector in Bosnia… We want to make TV financially viable so that it's not open to political influence," Shelley explained. She told one reporter “that with autocratic governments, the population is often fed state television, which delivers biased content.” So she would come in to help spread unbiased media through television.


In 2000, just when it seemed like her Charlie's Angels "past" was now far behind her, Shelley Hack was back on the set of Charlie's Angels; but this time, she didn't get upset. She was tapped to host the biographies of her former Charlie's Angels costars John Forsythe (the voice of Charlie), Jaclyn Smith, Cheryl Ladd and Farrah Fawcett, as well as newest movie Angel, Drew Barrymore, on A&E Biography’s Hello Angels Week. A&E Biography was a cable channel that helped promote the movie version of Charlie’s Angels, which was set to premiere on November 3 that year. So Shelley found herself literally back on the Charlie's Angels office set, talking to Charlie (John Forsythe) on speaker phone. She gamely opened and closed each biography and was a delight to watch.

The movie was a huge hit worldwide; and it renewed interest on the beloved TV series which resulted in the airing and re-airing of past and present television specials that honored Charlie's Angels. In November 2000, Shelley, along with Kate Jackson, Farrah Fawcett, Jaclyn Smith, Cheryl Ladd and Tanya Roberts (the actresses who starred in the landmark TV classic) were all featured on the Today Show, Inside TV Land: Charlie's Angels and Time & Again: Charlie's Angels. The last time all the Angels were featured on one show was in 2002 - on TV Tales: Charlie's Angels (aired on the E! Network.) Shelley and all the other Angels gladly and willingly reminisced about the series that made each of them a star in their own right. To note, there has never been an Angel reunion that put all six women together in one room.


For the next seven years, Shelley worked extensively in the Balkans and Western Asia. SHMC embarked on various projects including: the transition of the Bosnian State television to a public broadcaster; the development of ethnic balance within the Bosnian television sector; the production of television debates and public presentation training for politicians; and the Turkish-Armenian reconciliation through print and television. In 2006, the company became involved in strategic planning for the tender of a Balkan bank with a wide ranging portfolio of assets.

The work was challenging, but Shelley was up to it. In fact, she liked it so much she turned her back on Hollywood. Although she said, with the right project, she would act again, she stepped out of the limelight and became very busy with SHMC. She said, "If you're going to go for something, well, you should really go for it 150 per cent, don't you think? Or what's the point?"

In 2006, Shelley Hack became a member of the Pacific Council on International Policy (PCIP). The non-partisan PCIP was and is a membership-based international affairs organization bent on understanding international affairs among others. The mission of PCIP was and is to give a more effective voice to West Coast perspectives on critical global policy issues. Shelley's expertise, experience and influence was one of the core resources of the council, whose membership comprised of leaders and innovators in all fields and from a variety of backgrounds, perspectives, and countries (this included prominent leaders in business, academics, politics, government, finance, technology, media, law, entertainment and the arts). Shelley's extensive work since the 1990’s in election organization and registration had qualified her membership into the PCIP.

For ten years, SHMC helped develop unbiased television, film, and associated media projects in war-torn and developing countries. Essentially, she helped develop television and film projects for foreign markets. And for two of those years, Shelley helped the largest media conglomerate in Eastern Europe develop and build the latest film studio complex in the region. “It's a huge, huge thing to do in a post-war country,” Shelley told a reporter, “but if you move forward and enable people, people get it."

But Shelley downplayed her achievements, “It was not a cause; it was a business, but a very satisfactory business.” She humbly said that of her company - the same company that was spreading peace and hope in war-torn countries throughout the world.

"I traveled all over the world,” Shelley said referring to SHMC, "I did it for ten years."


In January 23, 2008, Shelley Hack was invited to make an appearance on the mega-popular morning talk show Oprah. The episode was called “Classic Americana”; and it featured guests and items that had made a tremendous impact on the American psyche. And Shelley THE Charlie Girl made one tremendous impact on the American psyche (well, actually, the world psyche.)

Talk Show Queen Oprah Winfrey asked her staff to look for footage of Shelley’s unforgettable 1976 Charlie commercial; and it took them almost a year to find it. As an added bonus, Shelley agreed to appear on the show to discuss the impact the commercial had on women.

"It was a time when women were changing," a radiant Shelley said. "Women looked at (the ad) and said, 'I want to be like that.'" Every woman in the world wanted to be like that. In fact, even Shelley herself admitted she wanted to be like that. Host Oprah Winfrey exclaimed, "I wanted to stride like her with confidence. I wanted to be this fabulous."

Shelley Hack THE Charlie Girl had catapulted to icon.

And as previously mentioned, after appearing in more Charlie commercials, Shelley got her big Hollywood break on Charlie's Angels. "I was lucky," Shelley told Oprah, "There were two things I was in that were about making women feel a little more empowered."


In July 2009, the fourth season of Charlie's Angels finally came out on DVD. The Shelley Hack Season, as the season came to be known, was finally released on DVD with all episodes intact.

On that same month, Shelley Hack made a very rare appearance at the Hollywood Collector’s Show where fans could meet her for a chat and take pictures. The two-day event (July 18 and 19) was held in Burbank, California. Fans were so thrilled and so happy to finally come face to face with Charlie's most reclusive Angel. Shelley shared stories with her fans - from her modeling years until the day she “retired” from the business. To one group of enthusiastic fans, she happily said, “You guys made this show for me.”

Also in attendance was Tanya Roberts, the Angel who took Shelley’s place in Charlie’s Angels. Because they never met each other prior, a historic Charlie’s Angel moment occurred when they finally met. The two were never introduced until that very moment; and again, fans were thrilled to no end. In fact, many wondered if a complete Charlie’s Angels cast reunion was ever going to happen.

On July 9, 10 and 11, 2010, Shelley made another appearance at the Super Mega Show and Comic Fest. The three-day event was held at the Crowne Plaza 690 Route 46 East Fairfield, New Jersey. East coast fans were thrilled to finally meet Charlie’s most private Angel. She was slated to appear at the Boston Super Mega event on November 20 and 21 that same year: but she backed out at the last minute.


In 2010, Shelley, her husband director Harry Winer and Susan Winer formed SMASH MEDIA Inc. Their company tagline - “Entertainment that brings people together.”

According to the company’s website,

“SMASH MEDIA is a production company based in Los Angeles that develops and produces content for motion pictures, television and new media. SMASH develops popular entertainment for television and film that have global appeal with an emphasis on compelling emotional content, unique, well-defined characters, and a memorable story. SMASH has assembled a team of creative and business professionals dedicated to finding innovative business models in a changing economic environment.”

The company principals are Harry Winer – president; Shelley Hack – Vice President for Development; and Susan Winer – Vice President for Business Affairs

SMASH MEDIA has since produced two very unique documentaries Citizens of the World (2010) and Maharajah of the Road (2012.) Both documentaries were aimed to build “bridges between people and cultures.” Citizens of the World is a song and was performed in five different languages. It is also a music video and a documentary aimed to show listeners and viewers that seemingly divergent cultures have more similarities with each other than differences. Maharajah of the Road is about a Paris-based multi-millionaire businessman who is also a vintage American muscle car enthusiast. While driving his vintage cars along Maharajah Road in India, he discovers the many common interests people have despite their diverse cultures.

In 2011, the company produced the TV movie Lucky Christmas for the Hallmark Channel. Based on a story by Sheri Davenport and Harry Winer himself, the movie starred Elizabeth Berkeley and was meant to be viewed and enjoyed by the whole family.

The company also produced the feature film The Expatriate (which has since been re-titled Erased) and released it in 2012. Starring Golden Globe-nominated actor Aaron Eckhart, the film is an action-packed thriller.

In May 20, 2010, Shelley Hack was spotted at amfAR’s 17th Cinema Against AIDS gala held at the Hotel du Cap Eden Roc in Antibes, France during the Cannes International Film Festival (it’s the last big bash of the festival.) In 2011 and 2012, she was spotted attending a couple of Hallmark Channel events, assumingly, as a representative of SMASH MEDIA Inc. On January 7, 2011, she attended the Hallmark Winter TCA Party at the Tournament of Roses Parade House in Pasadena, California. On January 14, 2012, she was seen and photographed by the paparazzi at the Hallmark Channel TCA Winter Party of that year, also held at the Tournament of Roses House in Pasadena.

On all these occasions, Shelley was her usual chic and radiant self. And as one blogger put it, “She also looked as if she knows things other people don’t.”

Undeniably KINDA WOW!

And today, Shelley is still that intelligent, well-educated, chic and beautiful woman who can disarm onlookers with her dazzling smile.

But it is apparent that Shelley has come a long way since her days as the family shortstop in Connecticut. She has become one of the celebrated SuperModels of the ‘70s. She has risen to prominence as part of TV's most beloved series. She has embarked on a reputable acting career. And she has achieved respect in politics, international peacekeeping and film production.

But it is even more apparent that Shelley Hack has undeniably become Kinda WOW!