News Column

KRSU pledge drive to feature Weird Al's 'UHF'

October 1, 2013


Oct. 01--The 1989 film "UHF," starring "Weird Al" Yankovic and filmed here, is coming back to Tulsa and not just in a theater.

The campy movie about a small UHF station saved by a telethon will be broadcast from 7 to 9:30 p.m. Saturday on KRSU public TV, channel 35 cable, and satellite 109, during a telethon to raise funds for programming.

Yankovic co-wrote the screenplay for "UHF," in which his character, George Newman, and his friend are fired from their jobs at a burger joint and he ends up taking over a failing TV station won by a relative in a poker game.

The KRSU telethon will feature an audience and live pledge breaks with local cast members from the film answering phones and doing interviews. The actors include Lisa Stefanic (Phyllis Wheeler "Wheel of Gummy Fish" contestant), Eldon Hallum (Spatula City dad), Cris Dunn (Spike from "Punk Rock Aerobics Show"), Vida Bruntzel (Marble in the Oatmeal lady) and former Tulsa police officer Bob Maras, stunt coordinator and Killer Thug in the film.

The telethon will also include recorded interview segments with Yankovic, director Jay Levey and executive producer Gray Frederickson. Audience members will play "UHF"-themed games like Twinkie Wiener Sandwich speed-eating contest, Find the marble in the oatmeal, Poodle Pole Vault and more.

Viewers and audience members will also have a chance to win Weird Al concert tickets and other prizes by visiting the RSU booth at the Tulsa State Fair or by emailing

Tickets for the telethon in the performance studio in Baird Hall on the Claremore campus of Rogers State University, which can be requested via email, are free but seating is limited. Thank-you gifts for pledge drive donations will include Weird Al concert tickets, a VIP location tour and limited edition UHF25 posters signed by the artist and Weird Al.

The pledge drive will continue Sunday with a showing of Yankovic live in concert for "The Alpocalypse Tour," first shown on Comedy Central in 2011.

The idea for the "UHF" celebration was the brainchild of RSU public TV, according to the station's program manager Jennifer Sterling.

"We reached out to Al's manager, Jay Levey, last winter to do the telethon idea for the 25th anniversary and, as we talked, the idea grew from doing one little show into world domination," she said.

"We created host of events which culminates with Al's concert on Oct. 19. Since the whole concept revolved around the movie, we couldn't think of a better partner than Circle Cinema. After that, the Tulsa City-County Library, Art Directors Club of Tulsa, and OKPop came on board to partner on various aspects of the celebration."

The on-air goal for the telethon is $2,500, she added.

The KRSU pledge breaks plus interviews will also be streamed live at

Other anniversary events include a "UHF" screening starting at noon Oct. 18 and running for 24 consecutive hours at Circle Cinema, 12. S. Lewis Ave., with prints of commemorative posters given away at drawings held in conjunction with the screenings.

And on Oct. 19, Yankovic and his band will be live in concert for "The Alpocalypse Tour" at the Brady Theater.

Pledge drive events

Oct. 5: 7-9:30 p.m. Movie "UHF" airs with a pledge-drive telethon for KRSU-TV alongside the film about a telethon on channel 35, cable 109.

Oct. 6: KRSU pledge drive continues with a showing of Yankovic live in concert for "The Alpocalypse Tour."

Oct. 18: "UHF" screens at Circle Cinema, 12 S. Lewis Ave., starting at noon and continuing for 24 consecutive hours. Tickets are $10, available at the box office or online at

Oct. 19: The Apocalypse Tour with "Weird Al" Yankovic and his band at the Brady Theater, 105 W. Brady St. Tickets are available online at

Rita Sherrow 918-581-8360


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