Recently we spoke with Tricia Helfer about her work on the “Creepshow” reboot series as well as her time on “Battlestar Galactica”, “Van Helsing”, “Lucifer”, and other projects.
Were you a fan of the original “Creepshow” films growing up? Was there any of the various stories that you remember as being one of your favorites?
I had never seen the original films, nor the 1950’s horror comics. I’m generally a bit of a wimp when it comes to horror, so I just had assumed they weren’t for me. But prior to attending Comic Con this summer, I watched both of them in my hotel room and I was thrilled to have finally seen them. Not only are they well done and actually quite funny, albeit also scary, they usually have a comeuppance at the end that I thought was brilliant. I can tell you which was my least favorite…the cockroach one!
What sort of preparation work (if any) did you do prior to filming the episode? Did you go back and re-watch any of the classic, or review any of the comic books?
I hadn’t seen the films or read the books, no, but I did watch one of the stories in one of the movies – The Hitchhiker. Our story had a similarity to that particular original story so Roxanne had suggested that I watch it prior. And of course I had sat down with Greg (producer) and Roxanne (director) to discuss the story and the character and to work with Danielle (plays Celia) a bit a couple days before we started filming.
Besides “Creepshow” is there a particular horror film (or series) that particularly enjoy and did you incorporate anything you observed from that into your work on “Creepshow”?
Considering I get scared very easily, I tend to steer away from watching much. I love playing in the genre but I live alone!!!!
How has your experiences changed over the years, from your time on set with “Battlestar Galactica” to your more recent roles in series such as “Lucifer” and more recently “Van Helsing”?
I don’t think my experiences have changed over the years. I’m happy that I’ve continued to be able to work with lovely and talented people and play strong, badass roles. I think the only difference between BSG and now is that now I tend to have some crew that are fans of BSG and we end of talking about that show a lot.
There a rumors of a potential “Battlestar Galactica” show in the works…would you be interested in potentially reprising a role, or potentially performing a different role all together should the opportunity arise? Is there any character from the either of the previous series that you’d be interested in performing as?
I don’t really know anything about the potential new BSG show except that it’s supposed to live within the same basic story but be of a different aspect of the story. To my knowledge, no one from our show will be involved with it so I think it might be a little odd to be on it. But, that being said, Sam is a fantastic writer and show runner so I would interested, of course, to entertain the idea if it was wanted, but I don’t expect that’ll be the case.
What can you tell us about your work on “Van Helsing”?
It’s been a really fun role to play. It can be hard to join a series that has been going for a few years, but the cast and crew were completely welcoming. The show is a total reimagining of such an iconic story so it’s just been a real treat to come in and play the first female Dracula. At least I think there hasn’t been any others. My vision of her was really on par with the producers and team so it felt really seamless to go up to Vancouver and film her for the first time. I’m excited to see how the viewers respond to her this season.
You seem to be drawn to Genre projects; were you a fan of Science Fiction growing up and what have been your favorite shows or films?
I’m not really drawn to genre projects…I mean I’ve played quite a few lawyers and cops too. I’m drawn to good stories and to interesting, strong female characters and you just happen to get that often in science fiction. I grew up without a television so I wasn’t really into much film or TV wise. I was into playing sports and watching hockey when I was young.
What can you share with the readers about your memories from SDCC and other conventions and how many conventions do you attend in a year?
SDCC is massive and exhausting. It’s much more a studio/network press junket so from the actors side of things it’s much more a press event than it is meeting fans. The smaller conventions around the world are better for fan interaction. It really all depends on the year for how many I do. Some years I’ve done none and some years I’ve done up to 5 or 6. It’s a treat to travel and meet fans, especially worldwide, and getting to see the impact a show has on so many different cultures and people. That’s really fun.
How did you get into acting and what was your big break prior to “Galactica”?
I was living in NYC and had been modeling for about 10 years when I quit and moved to LA to start acting. I started studying acting at the Penny Templeton Studios in NY prior. I just decided to take an acting class to see what it was like, and I fell in love with it. Battlestar was really my first big break. I had moved to LA a year before and did an indie movie and a guest spot on CSI, but BSG was my first series role.
Did you keep anything from your time on “Galactica”?
I got to keep a black Dolce and Gabbana dress that Caprica Six wore once, and I kept one of Number Six red dresses. I actually dressed up in it for Halloween two years ago.