Helfer Trades Red For Green
Voicing Boodikka In Green Lantern: First
If you liked her in red, you’re going to love Tricia
Helfer in green.
is completely messed up."
Galactica’s visually stunning centerpiece shifts to
another space-based destination as the voice of Boodikka
in Green Lantern: First Flight, the next DC Universe animated
original PG-13 movie coming to DVD on July 28, 2009.
taking the Sci-Fi world by storm as Number Six in Battlestar
Galactica, Helfer has seen her star rise on the entertainment
front, scoring a key role throughout the second season of
USA Network’s hit series Burn Notice, being featured
in NBC’s Chuck and the upcoming Human Target, and
dipping into the super hero realm as the voice of Black
Cat in The Spectacular Spider-Man.
expands her voiceover career with her first feature-length
film role as Boodikka, the most prominent female member
of the Green Lantern Corps. Helfer joins Christopher Meloni,
Victor Garber and Michael Madsen as the core quartet of
voices in the film, supported by fine performances from
Juliet Landau, John Larroquette, Kurtwood Smith and a host
Premiere, DC Comics and Warner Bros. Animation are set to
release the all-new Green Lantern: First Flight in a Blu-Ray™
Hi-Def edition, a special edition 2-disc DVD, and a single
disc DVD. Warner Home Video will distribute the action-packed
movie, which will also be available OnDemand and Pay-Per-View
as well as available for download day and date, July 28,
Lantern: First Flight will also have its world premiere
at Comic-Con International in San Diego on Thursday, July
is as genuine as she is beautiful, and she shared her thoughts
on a variety of subjects in a Q&A following her final
recording session for Green Lantern: First Flight. The topics
of conversation included psychology, rod weeding, an unfulfilled
mastering of Frogger, a Star Trek-based fear of earwigs,
and … well … read it for yourself.
GARY MIEREANU: What did you seek to convey
vocally as Boodikka?
HELFER: Boodikka’s a fighter, a protector.
She is very honorable in that she does what she thinks is
right, even if some things go against the grain. She’s
certainly not an evil character per se, but she does things
that she thinks are good for society. She’s not really
sexy in terms of her personality, so she’s not trying
to reel Hal in – that relationship is more like comrades.
So I wanted to play Boodikka both strong and sweet.
MIEREANU: Are there aspects of Boodikka that are
familiar to you?
wouldn't say she's like Number Six at all."
HELFER: I think there are some aspects of Boodikka
in other characters. I wouldn’t say she’s like
Number Six at all, really, but there’s some clones
of Six that are similar. I’d kind of say she’s
a little bit like Natalie from the fourth season of Battlestar
because she’s a bit of a leader in her own way, she’s
strong and intelligent, and she does what she thinks is
right when she feels very strongly about certain things
– as Natalie did taking sides against her Cylon counterparts.
MIEREANU: This is only your second voiceover
role. Was there anything particularly special that enticed
you to accept the role?
HELFER: What made me say yes to doing the movie
and voicing Boodikka was that I just thought it was a really
sweet story. I didn’t really have any preconceptions
of the role or the story. I’m not very well read in
comics, so I went into this with a completely open mind.
I loved the script – there was no flipping through
it. It was a good, solid story.
MIEREANU: Were you familiar with “Green
Lantern” at all?
HELFER: I did a little research, but not too much.
I grew up without a television on a farm in the middle of
nowhere, so I really didn’t see hardly any movies
or TV series, and no cartoons. So I kind of have to go into
things with a really blank slate, an open mind, and I think
sometimes that’s good actually for voices because
you don’t go in with anything really preconceived.
feel like I have to fit a certain (type) because I’ve
seen this character played that way before. I can read the
script and go in feeling with my own gut instinct. And then
(she laughs) you have a nice room full of people that tell
you if you’re messing up or to try it different way.
MIEREANU: What did you do out in the “middle
of nowhere” for entertainment?
HELFER: I worked a lot. I was a farm hand, so I
grew up driving tractors and fixing farm machinery and picking
rocks out of fields and driving. I rod weeded and disked
and harrowed and that kind of stuff. I was a tomboy. Between
that and school and being big into sports, that was kind
of my life. So I can change my oil and fix a flat tire,
but I can’t really get into a pop culture discussion.
MIEREANU: How do you go from rod weeding
to walking the runway to starring on television?
HELFER: I was planning on going to university to
study to go into psychology. And that’s when, as they
say, I was discovered by a model scout. I’d have never
thought of being a model. Or acting. But I’d been
modeling for eight years, and thought I needed more of a
took an acting class to help with commercial auditions.
The first class was like hitting me over the head with the
passion bat. I just loved it. I said, “Okay, I’m
going to try this – I’ll study for two years
while I’m still having pictures taken of me.”
Then I moved out to LA and, a year later, got Battlestar.
It’s just kind of been rolling and I’ve been
taking little steps up. Now I’ve started doing voiceover
work and it’s so much fun.
MIEREANU: What is the internal joy of
acting for you?
HELFER: I think it stems back to me wanting to
go into psychology as a kid. Acting is essentially the study
of character. It’s getting inside the character’s
head. Who is this person? What makes her tick? What makes
her angry? What makes her happy? I think that was the attraction
for me immediately.
terrified in my first acting class, but it was also like
I’d had an amazing work out and a therapy session
at the same time. I tend to be the kind of person that bottles
everything up, so to be able to go out and release all these
emotions in the name of a character was tremendous.
not me, Tricia, going crazy and being an idiot. It’s
Boodikka. So acting, for me, is fun and a great release.
MIEREANU: Okay, Dr. Helfer. Analyze Boodikka?
HELFER: Well, going very Psych 101: Boodikka is
completely messed up (she laughs)
be fair, probably not the craziest woman Hal Jordan
has been with.
MIEREANU: What do you enjoy most about
HELFER: It’s going to sound simple, but really,
voiceovers are a lot of fun. You get to go in and really
play. You can show up in your pajamas if you want to. I
wouldn’t, but I could. It’s just freeing in
that respect, especially when you’re used to being
on set in some of the things I’ve filmed.
Six was so much about the look – I’ve got a
wig and the curls just have to be right and the makeup –
all of that can be kind of exhausting in its own right.
So to be able to come into a booth and only have to put
on the headphones, it’s more like playing than being
on set as an actor.
with voices you don’t have to be boxed in by what
you look like. So far the characters that I’ve done
in live-action tend to be along the sexy route, and even
voicing Black Cat was in that vein. But voiceovers definitely
give me the chance to play away from that – and it’s
great fun to do something that’s not typical of what
people would expect.
like to play somebody silly and fun and goofy. Most of the
stuff I’ve done has been much more along the lines
of serious and sexy or serious and smart. I think it would
also be great fun to just be wacky and crazy and funny,
MIEREANU: You’re a fairly recognizable
part of the Battlestar universe, and Sci-Fi fans can be
very passionate. Has the fanboy attention been a positive
experience for you?
HELFER: I think Sci-Fi fans are fantastic. They
get a bad rap and I think that’s unfair. It’s
a genre that draws intelligence and creativity because you
have to have a mind that can go to these outer reaches and
digest the information. Some fans can get a little crazy,
but they can do that in any fan situation. The conventions
are a lot fun – I like getting out and meeting the
part is actually doing the stage Q&A, getting the questions
and hearing what they want to know. Half the time I don’t
know the answers, but you get a great perspective on the
fans’ view of your show.
funny is that without the white hair and the red dress,
most people at conventions don’t really recognize
me from Battlestar. When I first started doing
conventions, I’d literally have to have a name plate
on my table. I’m starting to get a little less anonymous.
Fans actually are kind of shy around me – I think
I scare some of them because of my Number Six character.
She’s quite strong and mean sometimes, so people are
usually very polite around me and kind of nervous about
coming up to me. Maybe that will change once people know
that I’m actually nice and I’m not an evil robot.
MIEREANU: Are you a fan of Science Fiction?
HELFER: I’m a fan of Science Fiction in that
I grew up without a television and rarely went to movies,
but what we did see were the Star Treks and the
Star Wars and Superman films. My dad was
a Science Fiction fan, so we’d go to see those big
really necessarily remember details to the level of most
fans, but I do remember seeing them, and I loved them when
I was a kid. Although earwigs (in Star Trek: The Wrath
of Khan) scared the b-Jesus out of me. I was very young
and I remember that scene, and it really had a frightening
effect on me.
out from Alberta, Canada to British Columbia to the orchards
to get peaches, and we were driving back and a peach bug
– I think that’s what they’re called,
and they look like the earwigs – crawled over the
seat from the boxes in the back and bit my sister.
terrified. I wouldn’t sleep the entire ride home,
and it was a 15-hour drive. I sat in the back and literally
white-knuckled on the seat because I was terrified that
an earwig was going to get me. Maybe I’ve been a little
scarred by that incident – maybe that’s why
I don’t really see anything any more. I’m scared
of the earwigs. Hmmm …
MIEREANU: Do you have a reference point
when you're playing Boodikka?
all imagination and fun."
HELFER: For me, because I didn’t have the
animation to look at, playing Boodikka was all about my
imagination. So it's important for me to know the entire
script. I've heard of some actors that just read their lines
and that's it, but for me to really understand the context
of the story, I really want to know what is going on with
the entire picture.
playing a cop or something like that, you have much more
reference to go on. But when you're a super hero, you don't
have a lot of reference to go on. I mean, I can't really
fly. I can’t really construct a huge Saran Wrap to
wrap a guy up and catch him.
all imagination and fun. So you just kind of have to let
it go and pretend. At the same time, you can't be silly
with it unless it calls for being silly. You have to put
a seriousness to it, to make it believable.
MIEREANU: So now you’re going to
voice a role in the next version of Halo. Are you much of
HELFER: I played Frogger on our first family computer.
I only made it to the second round. I got past the stream
and made it to the highway. Squish. I never got past that,
so I quit. There's definitely coordination and a skill involved
in video games that I just don't possess.
MIEREANU: You have cats. You voiced Black
Cat. You’ve said that you favorite comics character
is Catwoman. What is this attraction to cats?
HELFER: Aside from the fact that they're soft and
cuddly and kissable, I love their personalities. I love
the differences in them. I'm an animal lover across the
board, and I love dogs – but I find them a little
needy. I find cats a little bit more like my personality,
where sometimes I want to be needy and be cuddled and sometimes
I’m like “You come near me, you're gonna get
your head bitten off.” I feel like I have a lot of
moods and sides of my personality and I kind of feel that
cats have that, too. They are who they are and they they're
not afraid to show it.
to Gary and Trisha for taking the time to do this interview.
Keep checking back in with us at Fanboy Planet for updates!
Green Lantern: First Flight, an all-new DC Universe animated
original movie, is set for distribution July 28, 2009 by
Warner Home Video.
more information, images and updates, please visit the film’s
official website at www.greenlanternmovie.com.
LANTERN © Warner Bros. Ent Inc. "GREEN LANTERN"
and all related characters and elements are trademarks of
and © DC Comics. © Warner Bros. Entertainment
Inc. All Rights Reserved.