Well, here’s a mental image that you probably thought you’d never have to picture: Jane Fonda and Michael Jackson went skinny dipping together. Nope, that’s not a randomly thrown together joke in the vein of Family Guy. It legitimately happened. And now Jane Fonda has decided to open up about it.
Speaking to The Hollywood Reporter as part of their Hollywood Masters interview series, Jane Fonda revealed that while shooting the 1981 film On The Golden Pond, Michael Jackson randomly popped up for a visit. Fonda admitted that the pop music sensation had come to the New Hampshire set to visit her, screen icon Katharine Hepburn, and her father Henry Fonda. Fonda explained:
[Jackson] came and stayed for 10 days. And when I first asked [Hepburn] permission she was not happy. Then the crew said, ‘You don’t understand. It’s Michael Jackson!’ We lived together. I went skinny dipping with him.
Jane Fonda didn’t go into any further specifics, except to add that she’d also shed her clothes and decided to go for a swim with Greta Garbo, too. I'm guessing not at the same time, because that would have just been all kinds of awesome. Either way, Fonda has had a pretty impressive list of skinny dipping partners. And while Katherine Hepburn wasn’t overly fond of Michael Jackson to begin with, the singer soon won her over because he was eager to become a movie star and he wanted to learn more about the craft.
And he picked a pretty impressive film to study from, because not only are Henry Fonda, Katharine Hepburn, and Jane Fonda three of the best thespians to have ever been seen on celluloid, but Henry Fonda and Hepburn picked up the Academy Awards for Best Actor and Best Actress, respectively, for their performances in On The Golden Pond, too.
While on set, Fonda revealed that Hepburn became more and more comfortable with having Michael Jackson around, to the point that she soon began regaling him with stories about her past as an actress and tales from Hollywood. All of which Jackson recorded on his tape recorder, a device that Fonda wishes she had her hands on today.
Unfortunately, Michael Jackson wasn’t able to quite match the on-screen exploits of Hepburn and the Fondas. But I think we can all admit that Moonwalker, and his cameo in Men In Black II, deserve at least some recognition. One for being preposterously bad. The other for being surprisingly funny. I'll let you figure out which is which.
You can check out an abridged version of Jane Fonda’s discussion with The Hollywood Reporter below:
Meanwhile, Jane Fonda can next be seen in Youth, which will be released on December 4.