Summer Glau Talks Supergirl in Superman/Batman: Apocalypse
Interview from Warner Home Video
Summer Glau knows her audience.
Whether as River Tam in Joss Whedon’s cult classic series and follow-up film, Firefly and Serenity, or as the indestructible android-from-the-future Cameron in Terminator: The Sarah Connor Chronicles, Glau has cornered the market on playing attractive, demure young females with the controlled homicidal power to destroy an opposing legion of trained warriors.
So it was only natural that as her first-ever animated voiceover role, Glau would fit neatly into the role of an uber-powered Kryptonian who falls under the spell of one of Superman’s greatest foes. Glau finds the perfect mix of youthful curiosity, teen angst and alien-turned-Earth-girl aggression as the voice of Kara, cousin of Superman (and ultimately destined to become Supergirl) in Superman/Batman: Apocalypse, the ninth entry in the popular, ongoing series of DC Universe Animated Original PG-13 Movies arriving today, September 28 from Warner Home Video.
Based on the DC Comics series/graphic novel “Superman/Batman: Supergirl” by Jeph Loeb, Michael Turner & Peter Steigerwald, Superman/Batman: Apocalypse is produced by animation legend Bruce Timm and directed by Lauren Montgomery (Justice League: Crisis on Two Earths) from a script by Academy Award-nominated screenwriter Tab Murphy (Gorillas in the Mist). Produced by Warner Premiere, DC Entertainment and Warner Bros. Animation, Superman/Batman: Apocalypse is now available as a Blu-ray Combo Pack, Special Edition DVD, On Demand and for Download.
Glau’s career has been populated with frequent visits to the fanboy realm, adding regular roles on The 4400 and Dollhouse to her featured gigs on Firefly/Serenity and Terminator: The Sarah Connor Chronicles. The professionally trained ballerina had a seven-episode run on The Unit, and will appear in the upcoming NBC series, The Cape, as well as in the film. Knights of Badassdom.
Following her recording session, Glau freely discussed a number of subjects – from the acting strengths of the Whedon alumni association to her consistent on-set nerves to a strong desire to land more adult roles. Here’s how that conversation went …
Glau is a superstar in the sci-fi / comics world and now adds Supergirl to her cred.
Was it easy to find a way to relate to Kara?
Kara was a really comfortable fit for me because she's sort of a girl coming into her own. A girl becoming a woman and finding out who she is, and so I felt like there were moments when it reminded me of River because she is so powerful, but also young and naïve and a little bit lost. She has this underlying strength that comes from out of nowhere.
What’s special about voicing Supergirl?
I think everything about being Supergirl is special. When I saw the graphics for her, I thought “I don't think I'm ever gonna look that good again,” so I'm going to soak it up and enjoy it. I feel like animated characters always have longer calves than they have thighs. They have these tiny little thighs and these big, wonderful calves and then these big hips, and this tiny little waist. I feel like it'd be hard to keep your balance, but it looks good. Plus I loved this script, and I loved the character. Who wouldn't love to be Supergirl? So I had a great time.
As this was your first foray in voiceover for an animated character, what did you have in your head while you were recording to stay focused on your character?
I’ve found that I do my best when I'm not afraid of being embarrassed in front of everyone. You have to just go there in your imagination. I tried to picture everything around me, seeing these other characters, and then I just put it out there and hoped that you all didn't laugh at me. And you might have because I couldn't hear you (she laughs) , but I just went for it.
Without any spoilers, do you have a favorite scene or a favorite line in the film?
I love that first scene when Superman comes to rescue Kara and she's putting on this completely different persona. Playing that change was really fun. And I also really loved when Kara meets the Kents. I thought that was really funny.
As an actress, it's very gratifying to have a character that has such a strong arc, so that you can do so many different things in one script with one character. She starts out speaking a different language and being very scared and not relating to anybody, and then realizing that she's reconnected with a family member. Then she goes to school and learns how to hone her skills. She just goes through so many changes – good, evil, scared, confidant – and that variety in one script is fun to play.
You did have an added degree of difficulty for your first voiceover session – speaking Kryptonian. How easy or difficult was that task?
I still don't know how that all turned out. It's kind of a blur right now. I'm trying to remember what we actually ended up with because we tried a lot of different things. You can make it up because not many people know Kryptonian, so I don't know exactly what I ended up saying. I am surprised that I'm not still working on my Kryptonian lines right now. I thought I was going to be doing the Kryptonian for a few hours (she laughs).