Rising Star: Jameson Parker

One of the three young stars of a nostalgic movie about the 60s entitled A Small  Circle of Friends, Jameson Parker portrays a pre-med student attending  Harvard. It's a role he knows well. During the '60s Jameson actually was a student, but was studying at Beloit College in Wisconsin. Easily relating  to events taking place at the time, he describes those years as ones of personal stress.

"The first year  I was in college, it was fun and games. Everyone was drinking beer and on an athletic team. Everybody chased girls, got drunk, and did crazy, stupid things. Then I took a year off, and when I came back I felt I'd gone  through 'the looking glass.' It had gone from short hair, fraternities,  beer, football, and girls to long hair, drugs, and peace marches. Most of the fraternities had closed, and sports were considered passé. It was very strange: in the space of one year, there was a total transformation."

Pre-Simon JPOne of Hollywood's handsome hopes in the  male-model tradition, Jameson is very blasé about his looks.

"Some days I get up and look in the mirror and say, 'Oh you handsome devil.' Other days I say, 'Oh. my god, someone's playing a cruel practical joke on me,' and  crawl back into bed."

The public started to notice Jameson when he played that rotten Brad Vernon on the soap One Life to Live. He raped women, beat his wife (an ex-nun). stole  her money, and went out with prostitutes. One day he gave such a good performance that two bartenders from Queens came to the studio with the  intention a changing his profile.

Married to actress photographer Bonnie Dottley, Jameson is the father of a year-old son Francis Jameson Parker III, Jamie for short. The actor was married once before when he was 21 and feels his youth was one of the main reasons that the marriage failed. He and Bonnie are older and wiser and seem to be  a very well-matched and loving couple who are riding the crest of a wave called "recognition."

Thanks to A Small Circle of Friends, Jameson has many offers to mull over. He is  very excited about his first starring role in a TV movie, Pirate's Key, which if successful could become a series. He's already picked out a spot behind his house In the Hollywood Hills where he will build a  patio and a jacuzzi if the series sells.

Looking to be a  heavyweight in all aspects of life, Jameson says of the future: "Eventually I'd like to play Brick in Cat on a Hot Tin Roof, but my secret ambition is to be the middleweight boxing champion of the  world."

Copyright (c)  US magazine, 6/10/80