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HERE'S DANIELLE (BR) [101-124]


[100] General Disclaimer: I have omitted general declarations of affection from questioners in this report, since, as the Creation folk put it at the CON, we all love the guests -- that's why we were there. I have also omitted any antics from some of the "scarier" fans because... well, I just don't think that sort of behaviour should be encouraged.

Photo courtesy of Amy J. Putnam

Danielle's First Convention Appearance

[101] Burbank was Danielle Cormack's first convention appearance ever. She was going to attend WarriorCon last September, but she got a part in AMAZON HIGH and had to work instead. She had no idea what to expect from a convention, and earlier in the day, some of us were telling her what would likely happen (and as it turns out we were largely correct). "Now you're scaring me," she told us good-naturedly.

Photo courtesy of Debbie Cassetta

[102] And indeed Danielle looked a little overwhelmed at the cheers and standing ovation she got when she was introduced. Danielle has a lot of fans in the Xenaverse. In fact, in a recent survey of almost 4,000 participants conducted from Tom's Xena Page, Danielle's character Ephiny ranked third in popularity following Xena and Gabrielle. This was very evident in the warm reception she received at Burbank.

[103] "My name's Danielle Cormack," were her first words. "I play Ephiny." She said this is her first convention, and asked to be treated gently. "I feel like I should break out into a rock song," she laughed while waiting to take questions, and the audience cheered.

Answering the Questions

[104] Her first convention question was about whether or not she found it difficult to do various accents, such as an American accent when playing Ephiny, or a French accent as when she played the Chartreuse Fox. She said as an actor, such things are expected, and it's part of those skills she works on.

[105] She commented that although she had been forewarned, the convention experience was overwhelming, because such fandom does not have much of a presence in New Zealand.

[106] In reply to a question about what was a most embarrassing moment, she quipped "Other than giving birth to a Centaur"? The audience laughed uproariously.

[107] Another person said that while she likes Ephiny, she really liked Danielle as the Chartreuse Fox on HERCULES. She asked if everyone had to work hard to get their accents "that bad." Danielle pause, smiled, and said. "Yes." She went on to say that they had to speak in such a way that they would be understood in different parts of the world, so they had to consider being intelligible as more weighty than being accurate. If anything, the accents were modeled on a British comedy called "'Allo 'Allo," which took place in German-occupied France during World War II.

[108] Someone else wanted to know what other work Danielle did. She said she had done other television in New Zealand as well as theatre. She mentioned a recent film TOPLESS WOMEN TALK ABOUT THEIR LIVES and the audience cheered. This film has won wide critical acclaim. She's now working on a film with Kevin Smith, and recently did a film with Karl Urban.

[109] When a girl asked how Danielle liked working with Lucy and Renee, Danielle paused and said quietly, "They're horrible people." The audience laughed loudly, at this, because of course they knew Danielle was joking. Danielle went on to say they were both very professional and very capable actors who knew very well what they were doing and got along with everyone on the set.

[110] From about this point on, Danielle fell into a rhythm with the audience and her responses got many laughs and cheers along the way. She was obviously enjoying herself more, and the audience really liked her in return.

[111] A girl asked if it was hard to do the scenes in A NECESSARY EVIL (#38) with all the fires and explosions. Danielle replied that during the shoot that day the wind was coming up and when you saw people running away, a lot of that wasn't really acting! But she also said no one got hurt that she knew of, but she was pretty busy herself trying to make sure her hair didn't catch fire.

[112] Someone else asked when we'd see Ephiny again, and Danielle reminded us that we'd see her in MATERNAL INSTINCTS (#57) and THE BITTER SUITE (#58), though "after my performance I don't know if you'll see me again." Steve Sears later came up (as a questioner) and assured everyone her performance was quite good and we would most likely see Ephiny again.

[113] She said she didn't really have any formal martial arts training. Someone is there to show them a few moves to make them look "really nasty" and it's shot well. But that's it. Lucy and Renee have had more training.

[114] Numerous character questions were asked, which Danielle answered as best she could. She said she really enjoyed playing Ephiny, as well as the Chartreuse Fox.

Photo courtesy of Debbie Cassetta

[115] A little girl heard that there was a problem with mosquitoes on the set and wanted to know if Danielle had been bitten by any. This was news to Danielle, who said she couldn't recall being bitten by anything of consequence, including mosquitoes. "But thank you for asking," she added. The audience enjoyed that and laughed.

[116] When Danielle auditioned for the part of Ephiny, she read an old HERCULES script which had a different character in it. Ephiny apparently had not been written yet. But she did get the part.

[117] In response to a question as to what was her favourite episode of HERC or XENA, Danielle responded "This is where you should get your rotten tomatoes and cabbages out. I have yet to see a full episode of XENA or HERCULES." The audience laughed and cheered. But the favourite episode she had done was LES CONTEMPTIBLES (#H54) on HERCULES, where she played the Chartreuse Fox. She said this was because she had a lot to do in it, and she liked the unusual costumes and setting. HOOVES AND HARLOTS (#10) was her favourite XENA episode to do.

[118] When asked how she felt about Ephiny being a role model for some, Danielle became very thoughtful and had a little difficulty sorting out the right words. She started by saying "It's nice that people take time to... to... to too to." The audience laughed and clapped.

[119] She went on to say she appreciated it, but seemed a bit overwhelmed that people would think of her character in that way. I suspect she, as many other New Zealand actors, is not used to the degree of fandom present in the USA and elsewhere.

[120] Someone asked if Danielle had aspirations to be a star based in the United States. Danielle said at the moment she's quite happy to remain in New Zealand. She said she felt an obligation to remain and help the industry, since so many people do go away when given the opportunity. She's very proud of her country and her work there. The audience cheered.

Surprise Guests

[121] The audience erupted in near chaos as Karl Urban and Kevin Smith came on stage with Danielle unexpectedly. Karl was his usual cut-up self. "Just like them to steal my little spot up here," she commented. Karl played with the audience a moment, amidst wild cheers. He asked "How are Karl and Kevin to work with"? "Karl and Kevin are very sweet," she said through gritted teeth. The audience loved it.

Photo courtesy of Debbie Cassetta

[122] Karl did a quick Elvis impersonation and he and Kevin departed.

[123] When asked what Ephiny's title was, Danielle responded "Queen of the Amazons. But Ephiny's goal, if she has anything to say about it, is to be King of the Amazons." The crowd cheered.

Photo courtesy of Amy J. Putnam

[124] And with that, it was time for her to go. The crowd gave her another standing ovation and cheered wildly as she left.

Photo courtesy of Debbie Cassetta

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