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 Tytuł: Another Universe An Interview With Hudson Leick 8/29/97
Post: 13 maja 2012, 03:08 
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An Interview With Hudson Leick
by Michelle Erica Green
webdate: 8/29/97


Q: What did you draw on in your own life to play Callisto? Do you have a role model for her?
A: No, I don't have a role model. I think I have a lot of rage that I can access.

Q: Do you like playing that? Does it ever scare you?
A: No, it does not ever scare me - it feels real good to get it out, and it is safe - the swords aren't real, I am not going to hurt anyone but myself! But if feels absolutely delicious, to run around and play a freak and to be paid for it.

Q: She seems to almost enjoy violence - the time when Xena hit her -
A: Absolutely, because Xena is engaging. She's engaging with her, she is playing with her - they are both playing together then. She feels cared about - sometimes that is the worst you can do.

Q: How out of control to you think that Callisto is? Do you think that she is a pathological liar?
A: I don't think she is a liar at all. I think she is pretty honest, actually.

Q: When she switches alliances - do you see her humor as intentional? Do you think she goes out of her way to goad Gabrielle, or is that just the way it ends up sounding?
A: She loves it, I mean, she finds it humorous. She finds Gabrielle humorous. And when you talk about the lies...it's wonderful because it doesn't even occur to me that she lies and changes alliances. Because she is, like, of course I'm going to change allegiance, that doesn't seem like such a lie. She assumes that Xena knows her character, and if she can screw Xena, then she is going to.

Q: You see her as much more in control, I guess. You don't see her as a madwoman.
A: I do think that she is a madwoman. I guess it is what you consider "mad" to be - I think that she is very unstable, putting is gently!

Q: But I guess if you are having fun with it then you don't really worry about her too much. Do you see her as strong? The show has so many strong women.
A: I see her as very strong and very weak. And I see her as very fragile. And I think that is why she is so fierce, and angry, and harsh, because she is so fragile. The death of her family has split her, and it is something, like a trigger split in her, and so she must live out carnage to be safe.

Q: Would you like to see her grow, or reform? The rumors are that you have already filmed an episode for next season...
A: I have.

Q: Oh good, so she is definitely coming back then.
A: Yes, she never dies.

Q: How do see her growing now that she's a god? Where would you like to see the character go?
A: I don't really know. I don't have an opinion on that. I think it would be fascinating to play her somewhat reforming. But if she lost all of her edge, well maybe she could reform and still be manic, really manic. And nobody's perfect, so maybe she could reform and still kill people a little bit on the side! Something humorous. I don't know what they are planning to do with her. I think she has been in the past such a powerful nemesis for Xena, and they want that, because that gives Xena a purpose as well, that it wouldn't make much sense if they reformed her, for the show.

Q: What was it like playing Xena in Callisto's body? Did you take lessons from Lucy on how to walk, how to talk?
A: We did - we followed each other around, we listened to each other, we studied each other - we would both say lines like how I would say it, like, "Xeeennna," and she would go, "Xeeennna." Really.

Q: I heard you've said it was really hard playing her.
A: Well, discovering each other and trying to copy each other was a lot of fun. Doing it was a completely different matter. Playing Xena while she was around was easier to do than when she fractured her hip. That was a lot of pressure because it is her show - she is the lead. The audience wants to see Lucy Lawless, not Hudson Leick, as Xena, and I was aware of that. It's not my character, not even my idea of what the character would be like - it's somebody else's portrayal of the character, so I have to copy that and stay true to that. So there is not a lot of creativity. It's creativity in an odd way, when you are just trying to copy someone and do what they do. So I didn't have the freedom to do the things that I wanted to do; everything I was doing was very planned.

Q: You have quite a large fan following yourself, as I am sure you are aware - do you ever look at the net following of the show?
A: I haven't done it for awhile. But I have to say that I don't use computers - I don't even know how to turn the damn thing on. My boyfriend is a writer, so he has access to it. So when I get really depressed at night , like five months ago, I said, "Will you turn on the net for me?" And I would read and read - and it doesn't do anything for you when you are depressed, because no one is saying anything that will fill you up. It can't make you feel better - well, other people can't do that even if they know you, which even makes it more sad. But it is absolutely fascinating.

Q: Is it interesting to know that you are having that much of an impact?
A: It's amazing. It is very surreal. I don't think that I grasp it, I don't think that I really get it. It just seems very outside myself - I don't even know how to explain it.

Q: Is it like reading about someone else?
A: Well, I know it is my character. And it is juicy and delicious that they are talking about this character, and they like the character so much, but there are two things that aren't so great about it. One is if I start buying into it too much - then when they decide they don't like the character, I am going to go just as far down. Which is possible, fans are fickle, we're all fickle. I have no control whether people are going to go to the character or not. Like Joxer - I think there were some problems. People didn't like his character for a while. And Ted Raimi is an amazing actor. You know, you don't know what people are going to take to or take offense to. It doesn't make any sense to me. Just because he is a man and he is an idiot, they don't like him.

Q: I think there was some perception that the network said, we better get a guy in there before people think Xena is gay.
A: I think that is crap. I don't think that Joxer was thrown in there to prove that Xena is not gay, because that has nothing to do with her relationship with Gabrielle. Nothing. Joxer is like a moron on the side. I don't think that is true at all.

Q: I don't know - I am relatively new to Xena-dom. I watch enough TV to notice how producers are heterosexist, over and over again. I don't know what the whole history with Xena is. But that is kind of the sense I have gotten from some of the fans. You're aware of the show's lesbian following?
A: I know Rob Packard, and I don't think he is homophobic at all--and I love the fact that there are so many innuendoes!

Q: Do you play up to that?
A: Oh, yeah! I love that - it makes it so much more exciting for me. Lucy knows it. I mean, Lucy will say, okay, let's flirt. That's what we do. It is just a big flirt. It's seduction, except it is life or death. It's exciting, it's fun.

Q: I've noticed you've played a lot of villains, except for Touched By An Angel.
A: They are easier for me. I think I feel safer to play bad.

Q: Is it the power?
A: No, it's not the power, it's the safety. If you're bad, you expect everyone to think you are bad, and that's safe. It's clear. You also have more range of doing whatever you want.

Q: How do you feel in general about Hollywood and the limited roles for women? Is that something that has really affected you?
A: For the three years that I have been involved in the business, hardly at all. And now that I have a new agent and manger I feel like I have been thrown into the pot really quickly - meeting heads of studios and directors and starting to study the directors in the movies that I have seen recently. Not hardly at all Just one, now - when I think of, they have a lot of sexism in Hollywood, absolutely. You'll see an action adventure movie and they don't know what to do with the woman. The woman has no direction, I don't even know why she is there. What is her point? I don't mean like Sandra Bullock on the bus, where it's about her. I mean the babe that sleeps with him.

Q: What kinds of parts are you being offered now? Has Xena opened doors to you?
A: It really hasn't yet. The agents that I was with, I wasn't being sent out. And so I am changing agents and getting a new manager - the activity has gotten much more delightful. I really like to work, and work is also really scary for me also.

Q: What drew you to acting in the first place?
A: I don't even know. When I was little I wanted to be Cher. I love Cher with her long hair and fancy clothes. I was interested in psychology and how we all think, and interact with each other and the energy that we pass. And so when I came back from Europe, I went to college philosophy courses, a lot - I took two, my idea of a lot! And I didn't like them. I took an acting class as well and I got the lead in the play. It just seemed right and even before that, I think I knew I would be an actress. I don't know why.

Q: What were you doing while you were in Europe?
A: Modeling. I was a terrible model. I'm 5'8" - really 5'7 and 3/4". Women would look at me in the industry and I would say "I am 5'8"," and they would look at me and say, "You are not 5'8"." I am almost there .

Q: It's interesting because you don't look particularly diminutive next to Lucy .
A: I don't have a little spirit, and I think that makes her look bigger. I think when people se me in real life they realize how little I am. Even my boyfriend, we had been friends for two years - when we first kissed and he touched my face, he said, "You are so little." Because I don't come across as little if you know me. I am not little!

Q: Do you have a lot of stage training? I have heard that people learn to project big...
A: I don't think that is stage, I think people have that or they don't, they take their space or they don't take their space. I think that stage can add to that, training can add to that. If you are putting yourself out there, you need to take up room.

Q: What has been your most useful training? Where did you learn the most about your craft?
A: I don't know that much about my craft. I have so much to learn. I've been a shut-in for the last three years. I mean, I go to yoga, I go to therapy, I hang out with my friends and my boyfriend. But I don't know that much about this craft. When I was studying in the Neighborhood Theater, it was all day training. I mean, you were there from nine to six. You could not work as an actress or you would get kicked out of the school. That was two years - I would watch movies consistently. I would study and study them, I thrived on it. Having no structure for me is a hard thing. And my days are packed, but I really can't tell you what I do everyday.

Q: Where are you trying to go with your career, are you trying to get into features?
A: I would like to break into features. I think that I have...there is an opening to do features. There is a possibility if I wanted it. But I am really afraid of it as well, and TV seems safer to me. And also, when I think about being a giant movie star, because sometimes I will go in that direction, I want to be Sharon Stone, I want to be huge, not as an actress but as an icon, it is totally my ego - I think that scares the shit out of me. I don't know if I want that. I can't imagine doing that. I mean, going to conventions, it is delightful but very draining. I keep giving myself away. Because I want to give what I have. But I have to figure out what the balance is, because I am drained the next day. I don't get out of bed the next day after a convention.

Q: You have to play this character named "Hudson Leick.".
A: Yes. They want to see Callisto, but they want her accessible, they don't want Hudson Leick. So they can talk to her and touch her and hug her, tell her that they love her. Which is funny because the people are so warm to me. They are amazingly warm and the character is, well, she has her warm spot in an odd way, you would think that the people would not be warm to the character. Little girls are afraid of me when they come up on stage.

Q: That's just great that little girls are going to Xena conventions. I read somewhere that you really want to do Star Trek because your sister is a Trekkie.
A: My sister loves Star Trek - and she just had a baby a few days ago!

Q: Congratulations! Who would you like to play on Star Trek? What is your fantasy? There is a lot of crossover audience.
A: I don't know anything about Star Trek. They haven't had a Star Trek [con] mixed with Xena yet.

My sister wants those gods, they're not gods but they are omnipotent...

Q: The Q?
A: Yes. She wants me to be a Q or one of those really nasty creatures. The beings that all follow the same mindset?

Q: The Borg. She wants you to be a Borg. They would have to shave your head and put white makeup all over you!
A: That would be okay.

Q: You weren't one of the people who auditioned for the "Seven of Nine" character on Voyager, were you?
A: Yeah.

Q: Wow, what was that like?
A: I didn't have my heart in it. That what is was like. I think I had a resentment against my sister. I think that was actually the truth. Because I was doing it for her and not for me. And at the time, I really didn't want to do it for her. It was just the way it turned out.

Q: Are you going to be doing more Touched By An Angel?
A: I don't know. I doubt it?

Q: Do you like playing sweet, ditzy...
A: I like playing ditzy. I would like to take it further if I was playing ditzy. They pulled my back on the second one. And it just seems boring without the character to it. That is what I like doing. I think it would get better and better the more I did it. I would have to explore it more. It was so drastic from anything I've ever done. And it was fun, because it was different, I could find a lifeline to it.

Q: Of anything you've played, what has been the part that just clicked with you?
A: Callisto. Easy, all of my demons balled up, screaming. It's like a little kid's dream. I am a three-year-old throwing a fit, and everyone saying, "Yeah!"

Q: Is there anything you don't like about it?
A: I love being overseas. I really have a love for the people I work with. The people and production - they are just really good friends. I have to say that the people over there are beautiful and earthy and sexy. They are delicious. I don't like how cold it is in the winter. Working outside in the cold, and my stomach is not covered, with a sword. It is bad. I really like the whole experience. I like being around Lucy and no one has an attitude. The scenery is amazing. Everyone gets along, very professional and kind. It's the best crew I've ever worked with. I wouldn't want to do it all the time.

Q: So if they offered you a permanent role you would not want to do that?
A: I would discuss it, but it would never work. I mean, having Callisto there all the time would be so boring. It would be, like, "Just kill her." I think Callisto is wonderful when she just comes in now and then.

Q: Did I ask you what your next project is?
A: No, right now I am just auditioning. I just finished a movie, but there's no release date yet.

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