Met trots presenteren we een interview met een van de hoofdpersonages uit Star Wars Rebels! Niemand minder dan Vanessa Marshall; de stem van Hera Syndulla, heeft exclusief voor StarWarsAwakens.nl enkele vragen beantwoord!
Interview met Vanessa Marshall
Every Star Wars fan knows you as the voice of Hera Syndulla in Star Wars Rebels and you also did voice work for various Star Wars games. How did you get started working for Lucasfilm and how did you get the part of Hera?
In 2002, I was honored to portray Jan Ors in Star Wars: Jedi Knight II – Jedi Outcast. A few years later, I was thrilled to be a part of Star Wars: Knights of the Old Republic II – The Sith Lords and then Star Wars: The Old Republic. When I auditioned for Rebels, the Top Secret project was called WOLF. When I read the script, however, it seemed very Star Wars to me, so I decided to plug in the various narrative elements of the Saga into the WOLF script, and fortunately it worked out! Because, obviously, it was STAR WARS! When I went to the callback audition, I saw a picture of a green Twi’lek on the wall, and that is when I knew for sure! I almost fainted! Ultimately, I booked the role of Hera, and it has been intergalactic ever since!
How did you ‘create’ Hera’s voice?
I could tell from the first script how dedicated Hera was to ideas of liberty, justice and freedom. Those are things I also care very deeply about, so I tried to bring my convictions and an open heart to each record session. In addition, my father is a pilot, and I have been flying with him in his open cockpit bi-plane many times, so I already had a unique understanding of the level of skill, focus, and courage necessary to make such bold moves in the air. I also study martial arts. I train several times a week in Muay Thai, MMA, and more traditional Boxing styles, so I am very familiar with combat moves and situations. I think I brought a lot of this to the microphone. I usually research and research for my roles, but Hera felt very close to me, so I only had to look within!
Can you describe how a day working on Rebels goes?
The cast usually gathers with Dave Filoni before we begin. He will show us pictures of new characters, and he will break down exactly what we need to accomplish in the episode. I feel like we are in a locker room, and when step in front of our mikes, it’s GAME TIME! I have tons of fun with the other actors. We work hard and play hard too! I always want to make sure everyone is ok, not hungry or thirsty! Like Hera, I am kind of the mom of the group!
You just mentioned Dave Filoni. How is he to work with?
He is a genius! He always encourages us to try new things, to go further than we might we might expect. He suggests various nuances, and then lets us do our thing. In the end, he knows exactly what he wants, and we enjoy giving it to him. When we finally see everything animated on television, it is immensely rewarding!
What is your own view on the Rebels series?
From initially reading the words on the page, I am blown away by the writing itself. When we perform the script, I am moved by how compelling the words are when read aloud. Finally when I see the produced show, it is so fantastic, beyond anything I could imagine previously, that I get to enjoy the show, like any other Star Wars fan! Working on the inside does not prevent me from enjoying the final product. Going from the page to the screen, it is so different that I forget I ever read the words in the first place. I get so caught up in the show when it airs! I love to live Tweet with everyone about it! I get to be a fan too!
You must have a favorite episode!
Honestly, it is hard to choose just one! I think the Season One Finale was perhaps the most special one for me, particularly as a huge Clone Wars Fan. I adore Ahsoka, and I have been worried about her ever since she left Anakin and the Jedi Order. I was so relieved to see her again! When she came forth as “Fulcrum,” I wept with joy!
Regarding Hera: how much does her character resemble you?
Very much so! We share a lot of values, ethics, and even facial expressions! It is almost spooky! They sometimes film us while we record, and I wonder how many things they use as a guide!
What do you think of Hera’s story arc so far?
I am elated that Hera got promoted, she got to fly a B-Wing, she got to heal issues with her father, and, in the end, she set up an actual rebel base. She has come a long way from the secrecy and planning required of her in Season One, when she always knew more than her crew. Now everyone is on the same page. Unfortunately, as the rebels have gotten stronger, so has the Empire, and subsequently the casualties are even more numerous! I look forward to seeing where she goes from here!
In the season 2 finale of Rebels were a lot of cliffhangers. Do you already know what will happen in season 3? Or is it a mystery for you as well?
I know a few things about Season 3, but I too have many questions!
You were a kid when the original Star Wars came out. What memories do you have of your first encounter with Star Wars?
I saw Episode IV in the theater with my cousins. I still thank my aunt today for taking us! From the moment the Star Destroyer moved across the screen, I was hooked. I particularly loved Princess Leia! She was such a great female icon! The movie had a huge impact on me then, and it still does when I re-watch it today.
You have Dutch roots on your mother’s side. Have you ever been to the Netherlands? And –since this interview will be published on the Dutch Star Wars site- is there anything you want to say to your Dutch fans?
Yes, I have been to the Netherlands. I went when I was a teenager, and I was delighted! Hope to visit again! To my Dutch fans? “De Kracht is met jullie!”
That’s great! Many thanks for your time and I look forward to Rebels season 3!
Collector’s Edition: #2 Shane Garrad
Collector’s Edition is een onderdeel op deze site waar we , in samenwerking met Echo Base, een aantal vragen stellen aan hele fanatieke Star Wars verzamelaars, over hun passie en over hun collection. In dit tweede deel een kort vraaggesprek met Shane Garrad, ik heb Shane zijn collectie ontdekt door zijn Instagram en ik wist direct dat hij meer dan geschikt was voor deze rubriek.
Hi Shane, please introduce yourself.
How did you get into collecting Star Wars?
You have a big Star Wars room, what is the focus of your collection?
What is your most valuable item?
Any white whales you are still searching for?
Any items in your collection that were exclusive for Australia?
Is there a big collectors scene in Australia?
Collector’s Edition: #1 Mark Newbold
Collector’s Edition is een nieuw onderdeel op deze site waar we een aantal vragen stellen aan hele fanatieke Star Wars verzamelaars, over hun passie en over hun collection. In dit eerste deel een kort vraaggesprek met Mark Newbold, oprichter van de site FanthaTracks.com en vaste schrijver voor Star Wars Insider en StarWars.com.
Hi Mark, please introduce yourself!
My name is Mark Newbold. I am the editor in chief of Fantha Tracks and I’ve been writing for StarWars.com, Starburst magazine (the longest running Sci-Fi magazine) and since 2006 for Star Wars Insider. I worked for De Agostini’s, build the Millennium Falcon, right now I am working on the Spanish version of the Fact Files series. I started a website in the ‘90s and there was not so much Star Wars going on at the time. So for a while it was a Star Trek site (don’t tell anybody) and then it became more of a general sci-fi site. And when it was clear in the late ‘90s that Star Wars was coming back, I started with the website and collecting again.
When did you start collecting?
Pretty much since the beginning. I saw the movie a couple of months after the release, it came out in December 1977 in London so probably I saw it in the months after that, I was six at the time. My aunt bought me a Star Wars magazine and that was the very first piece of my collection. In the years after ’83 there was nothing Star Wars anymore, and we made fanfiction. And in the 90’s when it was clear that Star Wars was coming back, I started with the website and collecting again.
What is the focus of your collection?
The problem is that I have no main focus. I like to collect all little bits and pieces, like stickers and buttons. It took me a bit, but I’ve got all the vintage figures together. I don’t need to have them in mint condition or anything so that made it easier. And I’ve also got a lot of Star Wars books. And I have different formats of soundtracks and audio books, laserdisc and games.
The good thing is I am not a completionist, so I don’t care too much about that. I like to collect small things. I always say that I would not be bothered if everything in my collection room would fit in the palm of my hand. I like it to have it a bit chaotic and have full shelves. Friends can come over and look around and pick things ups and ask questions. The most fun about collecting is the stories behind every piece.
What is the most valuable piece in your collection?
The Art of Star Wars signed by Ralph McQuarrie at a book signing in the mid 90’s. Nobody was in the queue behind me, so I got 5 minutes to talk with him, I wish I could say we had some deep conversations but it was probably small talk about the weather. Later, a friend of mine took the book to a convention in Paris and got it signed by Joe Johnston and that was the only time it left my side. If something would happen or if I could only keep one thing, it would probably be this this book.
What item took you very long to get, but in the end, you found it.
I was searching for years for SP FX: The Empire Strikes Back on VHS (a television documentary special hosted by actor Mark Hamill, about the special effects of Empire) and I knew a friend of mine had it and after some years he told me that he knew I wanted it. I made him an offer and in the end agreed on half of it and now I have it.
Any big wishes you have or white whales that you are after?
Luckily I don’t have one now. Like I said I love to collect everything, and I am not a completionist. It’s a shame because I like to look for something and search for something. It was a lot of fun in the days before the internet. I loved going to conventions and comic stores searching for that special missing piece.
I know from your social media that you visited Steve Sansweet at Rancho Obi-Wan, what is your relationship with him?
I contacted him when I was writing a piece for Star Wars Insider about the connection of George Lucas and Steven Spielberg. And he was at the time still working for Lucasfilm so he could help me with advice on that article. And couple of years later I interviewed him for Star Wars Insider, and we stayed in contact through social media. I met him again at a convention and we became friends. I was at Rancho Obi-Wan for the Guinness Book of Records party. And a couple of times after that. we stayed at Steve’s house and hade breakfast with him, he is a very friendly and very funny guy. If you have the chance to visit Rancho Obi Wan, you should definitely do so!
De verzameling van Mark Newbold
Volg Mark Newbold op FanthaTracks.com en op Twitter @Prefect_Timing
Exclusief interview met Nick Stanner (Stunt performer – The Mandalorian)
Wat zou Star Wars zijn zonder goede stuntlui? Iemand moet de stormtrooper zijn die door een vlammenwerper in rook opgaat of van een rots af valt!
In The Mandalorian ging stuntman Nick Stanner meer dan 30 keer ‘dood’ en was hij als diverse personages te zien. Van Mandalorian tot stormtrooper! Onlangs interviewde ik hem voor StarWarsInterviews.com en zoals altijd is het ook hier te lezen!
How did your journey in movies start? How and why did you become a stuntman?
Growing up in Omaha, Nebraska I was not around film at all. I grew up competing in Gymnastics for my parents’ club all the way through college. I was always flipping off something and in eighth grade I remember watching a movie, not sure which one, but I mentioned I wanted to “do that” as I pointed at the screen. My mom asked if I wanted to be an actor, and I said, “No, I wanna do the cool stuff!” Mom said Oh a stuntman?! I said yeah, and went back to being an eighth grader. Fast forward to after college, I was looking for a new apartment in Lincoln Nebraska where I went to collegians was telling my mom and she said, “I thought you said you wanted to go be a stuntman! When are you going to do that?” The second I heard my mom say that and I knew she supported me no matter where I was, I decided to leave. I headed to Florida to get involved with the live stunt shows at the theme parks like Indiana Jones at Disney, Sindbad at Universal and many others in the Orlando area. Once I got into some of those shows I started to meet people in the film industry.
How did you manage to get hired for The Mandalorian TV series?
One of my best friends that I met at the very first show I did when I moved to Florida was Ryan Watson, the Stunt and Fight Coordinator for The Mandalorian now. We have known each other since 1999. He is one of the best in the industry for fights and creative camera work.
Which characters did you play as a stuntman? The Mandalorian himself?
I played a mandalorian, but not THE Mandalorian. The Mandalorian stunt double is Lateef Crowder. He is amazing with movement. I played numerous characters. I died 32 times in the first eighth episodes, many as a stormtrooper. I did all the high falls so any time someone falls from a roof, that’s me. You can count at least four in the final battle in episode 1. 3 falls in one circle of the gun and one when IG-11 shoots me before they walk in the door. That’s a couple examples, but I am all over the place. I also was the green face guy with Carl Weathers and speeder bike trooper.
You just mentioned that you ‘died’ 32 times. What was your favorite death scene?
Each death was unique. My favorite is high falls, which is why I get to do them all, but being torched by mandos flame thrower as a stormtrooper.
Which of these characters was your favorite?
They are all fun to play, but there is nothing like being a jet pack mandalorian flying on wires. Kids dream come true!
Did you meet the Mandalorian himself, Pedro Pascal? How was he to work with?
I met everyone and worked with the whole cast! It’s an amazing crew with no lack of talent and everyone is very down to earth. Being there every day, I had a chance to get to know everyone pretty well. Pedro is a jokester so we got along great. I’m a big comedy fan so I enjoyed Bill Burr.
Did any weird or funny things happen on or off the set?
There were a few funny moments on set. Lots of laughs all around really but when it was time to work playtime was over. Off the set there was plenty of laughs and good times. When you’re working 10-14-hour days it takes the whole crew to keep everyone in good moods and in the film biz there is no shortage of laughs.
What is your favorite anecdote regarding the production of The Mandalorian?
My fave laughs, not sure of anecdote, was when Bill burr would mess with the crew. He has such quick wit and had the entire crew laughing!
Were you a Star Wars fan before you got cast?
I was a so-so Star Wars fan. I liked the movies, mainly the first 3, and saw them pretty young. Being involved has brought me a little deeper into the world but I would not consider myself a diehard fan.
The question I have to ask every stuntman: what is the most dangerous stunt you’ve ever done?
Most dangerous stunt would be getting hit by car in Death Sentence with Kevin Bacon, or a 9-story high fall while being lit on fire, but it could be being hung underneath a helicopter by 75 feet of cable and flown over Los Angeles! Hard to pick just one, they are all super fun to me!
Meer unieke interviews vind je op: Star Wars Interviews
Exclusief interview met Jake Cannavale (Toro Calican)
In aflevering 5 van The Mandalorian maakten we kennis met de jonge premiejager Toro Calican, gespeeld door Jake Cannavale. Speciaal voor zustersite StarWarsInterviews.com beantwoordde hij kort enkele vragen!
How did you get cast for The Mandalorian and were you a Star Wars fan?
They asked my agent if I would like to be in it. And I’m a massive fan and always will be.
How did the shooting of your scenes (most of them with Pedro Pascal) go?
They went very well. There was not a single difficult person to work with on that entire set. In my so far very short career that’s already not something I take lightly. Pedro Pascal was awesome! Mad love to Pedro.
You were directed by Dave Filoni, who many fans see as George Lucas’ heir. What is your opinion of him?
Other than the fact that he genuinely loves The Phantom Menace I have literally nothing bad to say about Dave. He’s the man. I loved working with him as an actor, and I have nothing but faith in him as a fan.
Did any weird or funny things happen on or off the set?
During me and Ming’s fight scene, Dave told her stunt double -whose name is also Ming- to actually kinda beat me up…it looked fantastic.
What is the best memory you have regarding The Mandalorian?
Probably knowing beyond the shadow of a doubt that I can pull off a blue leather outfit.
Besides acting you’re also a musician in a band called Vixen Maw. How would you describe the music you make and who are your musical influences?
Vixen Maw is an experimental grindcore band. I would describe us as the musical equivalent of getting lobotomized by an unlicensed brain surgeon with Parkinson’s disease and medical fetishism. I don’t like to speak on behalf of my band members (or anyone, as a general rule) but I can say we are all pretty eclectic in terms of our musical tastes, with extreme music being the anchor, or epicenter, so to speak. So our influences are pretty all over the place. I will say that we are currently writing a new album from our own respective quarantine spots and some of the bands I’ve been listening to for inspiration include Chepang, Bandit, Narayama, Vulva Essers, Cloud Rat, Botch, Wormrot, Coke Bust, Gulch, and Bryan Adams.
You’re almost 25 years old. Where do you see yourself in 10 years and what are your career goals?
In ten years I see myself hopefully having had enough memorable screen time to be sampled in some kids shitty grindcore band that his parents are sick of hearing rehearse from their garage. Also I would genuinely love to be writing for a living. Theater, film and animated television.
Meer unieke interviews vind je op: Star Wars Interviews