Mom’s ‘gut feeling’ saved me from 1988 school shooting


Jake Johnson has his mother’s intuition to thank for saving his life.

The “New Girl” alum, 45, revealed on an episode of the “Dope as Usual” podcast that he narrowly missed a 1988 school shooting after his mom barred him from going in.

Johnson attended Hubbard Woods Elementary School in Winnetka, Illinois, and on May 20, 1988, a woman named Laurie Dann walked into a second grade class and began firing shots.

“I was sitting next to my mom, I was in fourth grade,” Johnson said.

“Out of nowhere, my mother turns to me and goes, ‘You’re not going to school tomorrow.’”

The “Mummy” star explained that he was set to go on a field trip that next day and begged her to let him go since he wouldn’t physically be in class.

He noted that she had a “gut feeling” that she would “never” see him again if he attended that day.

Johnson revealed on an episode of the “Dope as Usual” podcast that he missed a 1988 school shooting one day after his mom barred him from going in. HULU

Johnson recalled how Dann, who reportedly suffered from mental illness, “walked into the school wearing a robe and nothing underneath” and went into his class.

“The room was empty, she walked through, walked down the hall, walked into another room, shot seven kids, killed one of them. True story,” he said.

“I used to get in a lot of trouble as a kid and I used to always talk so the teacher pushed me in the far right corner so I sat away from the other kids and I was right by the door,” he said.

Johnson further said: “My mom cannot explain why she did not want me to go to school… I don’t get it.”

Laurie Dann was is a mentally ill woman who open fire in an elementary school in 1988. ASSOCIATED PRESS

In actuality, Dann shot six students during her murder spree and wound up killing one 8-year-old boy named Nicholas Corwin.

Dann died by suicide that same day.

The tragedy occurred at Hubbard Woods Elementary School in Winnetka, Illinois. Tribune News Service via Getty Images

Johnson’s next project is his directorial debut titled “Self Reliance.” The comedy thriller recently premiered on Hulu after a limited screening at the 2023 South by Southwest film festival.

The film stars himself, alongside Anna Kendrick, Andy Samberg, Natalie Morales and Christopher Lloyd. The story follows a man who receives an invite to score $1 million by being a part of a reality TV game on the dark web.

“I used to get in a lot of trouble as a kid,” he said. GC Images

Of his choice to dip his toes into the directing world, the “Minx” star told Above The Line earlier this week: “I think I wanted to direct, because I’d spent so many years on different sets with guest directors on TV, and you see how so many different people run a set.”

“The way the director treats people — from the crew to the cast to everybody — it resonates through everybody,” he said.

Johnson added: “The majority of my job is being under somebody else’s tone in terms of being on set, and there’s a way that I like to work and there’s a joy and a lightness. I like jokes. I like people enjoying being at work, and so I wanted to do something where I could try to control that tone and see how it felt.”

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