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Former Sitcom Star Richard Karn Gets Back To His Theatrical Roots In Jacksonville

Richard Karn, best known for his role as “Al Borland” on the hit 90’s sitcom Home Improvement, joined Melissa Ross to discuss his role in the Alhabmra Theatre’s production of Neil Simon’s classic play I Ought to Be in Pictures.

“It’s quite an experience, it’s a lot of fun,” said Karn.

Karn burst with energy when explaining the local theatrical performance.

“The way it goes, the way it flows,” said Karn. “When you do something like Home Improvement or another show, you appreciate good writing, you find out that it’s very important.”

The former host of Family Feud, Karn started his acting career as a stage actor in Seattle. Moving to New York City because of its access to theater he eventually moved to Los Angeles with his wife Tudi.

“We were catering and I was an apartment manager,” Karn admitted. “I was also doing Shakespeare’s (Macbeth).”

In Los Angeles, Karn received a ticket for rolling through a stop sign on the way home from rehearsal one day, resulting in mandatory traffic school.

It was there Karn met the agent that informed him of the Home Improvement audition.

Now nearly 15 years after the once number one-rated sitcom, bypassing Seinfeld at its peak, Karn is returning to his theatrical roots.

I Ought to Be in Pictures revolves around Herbert Tucker, a Los Angeles-based screenwriter with severe writer’s block. The plot thickens when his forgotten history appears in the form of his daughter, who arrives in town to pursue an acting career.

With his paramour in the mix, the conflict of an uncommitted man taking another swing at fatherhood unravels.

“Really it’s a fun show,” Karn said. “It’s funny, it’s touching; it’s got all those elements.”

The official opening is tomorrow, Feb. 14 at the Alhambra Theatre. Karn will be a river city resident throughout the run of the play, which ends March 16.

You can get ticketing information at

You can follow Melissa Ross on Twitter @MelissainJax and Scott Harrison @Sharrison983.

Melissa Ross joined WJCT in 2009 with 20 years of experience in broadcasting, including stints in Cincinnati, Chicago, Orlando and Jacksonville. During her career as a television and radio news anchor and reporter, Melissa has won four regional Emmys for news and feature reporting.
WJCT News Intern Scott Harrison is a Journalism Major at Flagler College. He also reports for the college's campus news website, The Gargoyle.