Newsarama’s Lucas Siegel has the first interview with one of the Rebels crew: Vetern voice actress Vanessa Marshall, who plays the ship’s pilot, Hera. I think it’s safe to say she’s into it:
…When I got the call for Star Wars Rebels, that I booked Hera, I hyperventilated, fell to the ground, I think I was sobbing, and my agent then asked if she should call an ambulance. (laughs) Truly, of all the roles I’ve ever played, this is by far the most epic. I look forward to the long-term implications of interacting in the Star Wars universe. It’s really, really thrilling.
She also has a few things to say on our latest issue:
You know, it’s interesting – I would say from a marketing standpoint, I know how it serves them to target an audience, whether it’s male or female. I do know there are a ton more female sci-fi fans – there always have been, but perhaps now they have a greater visibility, so I predict that some of that stuff will change.
I will say that in a greater sense, I’m not so sure that there’s a stigma for the people who are buying those toys. In a real way, I think that George Lucas kind of destroyed the stigmas as far as gender is concerned, and raised the bar for future filmmakers. The fact there are female Jedi straightway levels the playing field. There are so many alien races that gender is sort of the least of the issues (laughs).
You look at Princess Leia, and Mon Mothma, Ahsoka Tano and Asajj Ventress – even to go to the games and EU [Expanded Universe – the Star Wars stories that are told in novels, comics, and video games], Jan Ors or even Mara Jade – the women in the Star Wars Universe just kick butt, in a way that transcends gender. And each in their own way.
I’ll say, even the female characters in Rebels each have their unique strengths – it’s another reason I’m so excited to be a part of this show. Just to get into Hera a bit again, she’s strong-willed, but she’s also nurturing. She really knows how to bring out the best in her team. She leads with humility. Her agility and physical skills are admirable; she can pull just the right punch at just the right moment and get the job done, and that’s how she delivers. Her very personal reasons for rebelling against the empire, I think, are things viewers are going to delight in uncovering each season.
Anyway, believe it or not, that’s only a tiny bit of the interview, so head over to Newsarama and read the whole thing.