what age did you see yourself as an entertainer?
I decided to be an actress while in high school.
Did you see yourself acting in horror films?
Not specifically horror films, although 'Carrie'
is one of my favorite movies.
What was your first taste in acting?
I trained at the Circle in the Square Theater
School in New York, then in London at the Webber
you stood out greatly in 'Aliens'
as you had a good supporting role as a
bodybuilder soldier named Vasquez. What did James
Cameron ask you to do to audition for the role?
Thank you. Pvt. Vasquez was an
exceptional opportunity! I'd been working in the
theater in London when I landed the role and had
never worked in film or television. During the
audition process, Cameron had me read the role of
'Hudson' (Bill Paxton's role). His idea was that,
Vasquez and Hudson were the inverse of each
other. Everything that Hudson blurted out,
Vasquez kept in - but she still had to have that
kind of wild energy underneath. Pretty smart guy.
What was your reaction when you got the part?
I was flabbergasted. I was also relieved for my
parents that I would finally have a job before
What was he like to work with?
Jim's a tough taskmaster and a perfectionist and
exactly the kind of person I love to work with.
Which moments will you cherish doing the most
while working on set?
Since it was my first film, I just tried to soak
up everything I could. I believe it's called Earn
while you Learn.
What was the toughest scene for you to do?
The toughest scene was the last sequence in the
air duct, shooting the Aliens while retreating.
The blanks were slapping around and I was trying
not to wince. That wouldn't have been very
Vasquez-like at all.
I remember your line
well screaming LETS ROCK!!! Then you went on a
killing spree with the creatures. What made your
adrenaline race through you to react like that as
it looked very good?
Pure fear of
getting hit by one of those flying blank shells!
And the noise.
Who did you like working with the most?
I had so much fun with everyone, but especially,
Bill Paxton, Mark Rolston and James Cameron. It's
been a long relationship and I really value their
How many years have you been weightlifting?
Weightlifting was never my sport - that's always
been a sort of urban myth that I was a
bodybuilder turned actress or something! The
truth is, I was a gymnast as a young girl and
always a bit of a tomboy. I started working out
at a bodybuilders' gym in London to get back into
shape after drama school when I wast cast as
Vasquez. I looked pretty good, huh? I only wish I
still was in that kind of shape now!
Now there are films being made called 'Aliens
Vs Predator'. Will you ever
try to be a part of an upcoming sequel to one?
I'm not sure how that would work. But if they
could clone Ripley....
your appearance looked so different in
'Near Dark' what was it like
doing that film as you got to work again with
Lance Henriksen from 'Aliens'?
I'm a character actress, so getting to change my
appearance and play wildly different people is
How could you relate to your character
Diamondback as it was very different than your
role as Vasquez?
Diamondback, first and foremost was a wife and
mother willing to kill for
her family. I found that a very compelling reason
to suck blood.
What kinds of feedback did you get?
My future husband was managing a small movie
house in San Francisco that screened 'Near Dark'.
He thought I looked really hot and now he can't
believe he's married to both Vasquez and
What kinds of stuff
would you like to share with us while being on
set of the film?
Working with Lance and Bill again was as fun and
crazy as ever.
Did you feel these films were promising for you
to act in future horror films?
I enjoy genre films and working with anyone who's
got a good story to tell.
Now the rest of the films you acted in were
actions, dramas, thrillers and sci-fi like in 'Lethal
Weapon 2', Terminator
2, 'Star Trek:
Which movie out of these did you enjoy doing the
most and why?
Two of my favorites were 'Titanic' and 'Fear and
Loathing in Las Vegas'. It was a dream of mine to
work with Johnny Depp, Benicio Del Toro, and
Did you miss acting in horror films?
I always miss acting in any film.
Now you did just finish playing a role in an
upcoming horror flick titled
'Autopsy'. Who do you play
I play Head Nurse Marian Burrows.
What is this film about?
An carload of young people have an accident on
their way back from Mardi Gras and are taken to
an abandoned hospital run by the brilliant,
bizarre Doctor Benway (played by Robert Patrick)
and his loyal partner, Nurse Marian -- "This
will only hurt a bit..."
What was it like shooting this piece?
Very cool. We shot it outside of Baton Rouge,
LA at a State Mental Hospital. We worked in
the empty unit, across from the active wing were
the inmates lived. Needless to say, it was very
creepy and realistic!
What kind of a release will this one get?
I believe it will be released in theaters this
Are you going to be appearing in any upcoming
will be appearing in a play in Los Angeles called
'Frozen'. It deals with the mind of a serial
killer, so I think horror fans would find it
fascinating. It runs February 15 - March 22 at
the Lillian Theater.
Now here's some fun stuff: What are your
favourite horror films?
Well, I already mentioned 'Carrie'. But 'Texas
Chainsaw Massacre' is pretty horrific.
If you were a horror film actress whether she was
alive or dead for one day who would she be?
Hmm. Hard to say, but I loved this quote by Julie
Strain where she said, "I'd rather be a bad
actress and look like me, than be good and look
like that 'Fargo' chick." Now there's an
artist with her priorities straight!
What is your idea of perfect happiness?
Watching my kids sleep. They're pretty good
If you had a choice of an acting gig you were in
that you'd like to change what show would that
I would erase myself completely from 'Fair Game'
- but keep the money, of course.
What are your ambitions in life?
Getting my kids to school on time - we can always