AOL Interview with Andrea Thompson

OnlineHost : Copyright 1995 America Online, Inc.

OnlineHost : The auditorium consists of two major areas: the audience, where you are right now, and the stage, where the speakers appear. Text which you type onscreen shows only to those in your row, prefaced by the row number in parentheses, such as (2) if you are in row 2. To interact with the speaker, use the Interact icon on your screen.

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OnlineHost : On her first audition, Andrea Thompson landed the lead in the quirky sci-fi comedy DOIN' TIME ON PLANET EARTH. After that, there was no stopping her. The stunningly attractive blone was featured in WALL STREET and DELIRIOUS, before landing the role of Genele Erickson on FALCON CREST. Recently, she has been a regular on BABYLON 5 as the Psi Corps Telepath Talia Winters.

OnlineHost : Andrea was born in Dayton, Ohio, but at age six her family immigrated to Australia. She grew up one of four children raised in a very strict Catholic household. She graduated early from school and began five years of world wandering. She worked various odd jobs including modeling, as a parts runner and cook for a gold mine in Northern California, sailing and fishing in the Caribbean, Jamaica, and Grenada. Her other adventures took her to Tunisia, Morocco, Algeria, Rio and most of Europe.

OnlineHost : Settling in New York, Andrea pursued acting and studied with Uta Hagen and Warren Robertson before she was accepted into the Actors Studio. Andrea came to Los Angeles five years ago to start her film career. It was at this time that she landed the role in DOIN' TIME ON PLANET EARTH. Three years ago she met actor Jerry Doyle, also from BABYLON 5, and together they have a two year old son. Presently, Andrea has added producer to her credits and is developing several film features. HOL Live : I'm your hostess this evening, coming to you live from Hollywood Online in

HOL Live : Santa Monica!! How ya doin, Andrea?

Psi Andrea : Is it cocktail hour yet?

HOL Live : Hehe.. I think we're in the midst of it. Let's start off with a question from ReelHtMan:

Question : Andrea, do you know if Psi Corps will play a vital role in the season finale?

Psi Andrea : Yes I know but you don't, and I'm not going to tell you!

HOL Live : Here is one from Jhenslet:

Question : What is the schedual like for shouting B5

Psi Andrea : Like most TV schedules, very hectic. We shoot a show in 7 days, and we shoot approx. 7 pages a day. If you compare that to film, where you shoot an average of 2 pages a day you get an idea of the kind of pace. It's hardest of all for crew members. The actors get sort of a break, the crew members have to be there all the time.

HOL Live : Here is a question from Solonor:

Question : Where did you disappear to? Your character hasn't been around for a few months (not counting reruns).

Psi Andrea : Well, I want to think up something really clever, instead of saying they haven't written... anything for me. How about this: I've been having a mad, passionate affair with Bester!

HOL Live : Here is a question from Brando567:

Question : What do you do on your spare time?

Psi Andrea : I read a lot. Anything I can get my hands on. I garden. I'm a gourmet cook. I also scuba-dive, sail, water-ski, horse-back ride. I love to hike and camp. And my all-time favorite is spending time with my son and my guy!

HOL Live : Demon Red asks:

Question : Are you planning any more episodes with the techno mages?

Psi Andrea : No - I wasn't in that episode. But maybe Joe is (J Michael Straczynski, the head writer - the Big Cheese!)

HOL Live : Joel 1234 asks:

Question : Do you really like science fiction or is it only a job?

Psi Andrea : Both.

Question : What's it like working on the set with your fiancee, Jerry Doyle?

Psi Andrea : It's tough getting out of his trailer at lunch time.

HOL Live : Here's one from SophieFilm:

Question : Is it true that you're having a same sex affair on this season's Babylon 5?

Psi Andrea : Oh several! Where have you been, dahling?

HOL Live : Here is one form Booperz:

Question : What do you find to be the most challenging thing about your Babylon 5 role?

Psi Andrea : Walking in those tight skirts.

HOL Live : Here's a follow-up from GriffithC:

Question : Did you have any input in your 1940s style costuming; almost a Veronica Lake look?

Psi Andrea : Yeah - don't you love it! But I had nothing to do with it. The genius behind wardrobe is Ann Bruce. Not only did she create my costume but she creates dozens of new costumes every week.

HOL Live : Here is a question from EarlD8765:

Question : The intro to this year's episodes talks about another war and it appears that it is leading up to this. Will we see battles this season?

Psi Andrea : Without giving away too much, yes!

HOL Live : Here's one from Bookworm2:

Question : Do You find this role interesting or pretty simple to play

Psi Andrea : I find this role endlessly interesting. JMS has given me a fantastic opportunity as an actress. My role is bound only by my imagination. And fortunately the produces are very open to new ideas and different interpretations. Going to work is like going to a playground for me. It's very stimulating. I'm having a ball!

HOL Live : Here is one from Ku Teke:

Question : How would you like to see your character evolve, Andrea?

Psi Andrea : For 2 years now... Talia has been mostly a watcher, an observer... I'd like to see more of what she thinks and feels. Talia is so bound by the strictures of Psi Corps. that she often cannot act as her heart would dictate. I'd love to see her have a completely mad moment. It's the science fiction version of the nervous breakdown.

HOL Live : Here is a question from Levinthal:

Question : Does the cast know most of the story arc already or are you all surprised by what happens?

Psi Andrea : None of us know any of the story arc. Occasionally, JMS will come by during lunch and drop a bomb like "the same-sex love affair," which got it's start in that manner.

HOL Live : Here is a question from Just Beco:

Question : Thank-you for bing here. Would you mind telling us how you and Jerry met?

Psi Andrea : At a bar. It was a birthday party for a friend. He bought me a cocktail.

HOL Live : Here is one from Hyboria:

Question : How did you get the job?

Psi Andrea : The old fashioned way...I earned it!

HOL Live : Wilburcat asks:

Question : I love your character, do you have any latent telepathy yourself?

Psi Andrea : I knew you were going to ask that question...

HOL Live : Here is one from Kdubose77:

Question : Hi there, Andrea. Greetings from Arlington, VA. Do you think Ivanova will be warming up to Talia any more than what we, the audience, have already seen thus far.

Psi Andrea : Stay tuned...!

HOL Live : Here is one from Dashripro:

Question : The cast of B5 seem like they would be a lot of fun to work with...are they?

Psi Andrea : Yeah. They're a great group of people, talented actors. Thorough professionals.

HOL Live : Here is one from THAFT:

Question : is there ever any kind of physical danger involved while shooting?

Psi Andrea : Sure - you could fall in love with an actor . But, no. Not usually. Producers try to avoid dangers at all cost to their actors.

HOL Live : Here is one from Ears also:

Question : Do you see a long running for B-5?

Psi Andrea : According to JMS, it's only 5 years. And that's it!

HOL Live : Here is one from WhiteClar:

Question : Are you able to tell us if we will see anymore of the Evil Spider Race Warriors?

Psi Andrea : Yes, I do believe they'll be playing a large part in the future...

HOL Live : Here is one from Lenobyte:

Question : Do you know if there are any plans in the works for your character to develop a deeper relationship with Garibaldi?

Psi Andrea : We felt we were heading in that direction for a while but nothing was consummated. Lets hope so!

Question : What is PSI corp. all about?

Psi Andrea : The PSI Corps was originally formed to protect normal human beings from the psychic abilities of telepaths. They were segregated, kept away from the population at large. Society's outcasts. Over time, they've developed into a very powerful quasi-militaristic organization. With an agenda all their own!

Question : The aliens in the pressure suit; are we going to find out if they are good or bad guys?

Psi Andrea : You're going to find out.

HOL Live : Here is one from HJC:

Question : What were your favorite episodes to act?

Psi Andrea : Mind War! I loved working with William Allen Young. He's a phenomenal actor.

HOL Live : Here is one from TLARIAN2:

Question : Any plans on a B5 movie?

Psi Andrea : There's talk of it for the future.

Question : What's the last book you read where you felt you had to play one of the characters in the film?

Psi Andrea : Robber Bride, by Margaret Atwood. I would love to play Xena. Alas, I'm nothing like her physically. But it would be great. - to play such a ruthless character.

HOL Live : Here is a question from Ron1120:

Question : Do you think that the writers will exploit your "acquired" telekinetic ability in future episodes?

Psi Andrea : I would certainly hope so. In the context in which it was presented, only one in 10,000 telepaths has telekinetic ability and most are clinically insane. So it gives me a whole new direction to explore.

HOL Live : Here is one from Willywig:

Question : Do you plan in being in any more movies or just staying with B5?

Psi Andrea : Both.

Question : When Jerry was here on AOL, it seemed apparent that a lot of what Garibaldi feels about his dad came from Jerry's life. Without getting too personal, what can you tell us about Talia's depth of character is borrowed from your life?

Psi Andrea : Her sense of alienation, of not fitting in with any group. I don't feel that way now, but as I was growing up, my family moved quite a lot. My father was in hotel management, so we never stayed anyplace for more than a year. I lived in 32 different places by the time I was 15. It makes me a great traveler now, and I don't regret any of my childhood.

HOL Live : TR3man wants to know why your character always wears gloves.

Psi Andrea : Talia always wears gloves, as do all members of the Psi Corps to prevent the picking up of thoughts, images, emotions, from other people. Don't forget, the Corps was formed to protect normals from invasion of their privacy.

HOL Live : Here is one from Lisa7909:

Question : Psi corps always seems evil, are you the white night, will she be able to turn it around? Its an organization that few can trust

Psi Andrea : I don't think any one person can turn the Corps around. They've set a course. And that course is dark.

HOL Live : Here is one from SnoopSKE:

Question : Since you are not in every episode, how far in advance do you know when you shoot episode?

Psi Andrea : I don't.

HOL Live : Here is one from MCK1138:

Question : Besides Talia, who is your favorite B5 character?

Psi Andrea : Garibaldi, of course. I also adore the character of Delenn, as well as ambassador Londo Mollari.

HOL Live : StiffysPa asks:

Question : Andrea, will we find out more about the "gift" that Jason Ironheart gave Talia?

Psi Andrea : Most definitely, but I don't want to spoil you fun. :-)

Question : Andrea, how did Talia come across that penny, did she get it in PSI Corp?

Psi Andrea : She's had it since she was a little girl.

HOL Live : Here is one from Osuziq30:

HOL Live : Here is a comment from BriMcGjrn:

Comment : I just wanted to say that you were the hottest actress on Babylon 5... :) Just had to say that. Wanna get married? Oh no, I forgot - I'm marrying Jerry next week. ;-)

HOL Live : Here is one from Viper1701:

Question : Will there be any new cast members next season?

Psi Andrea : Most definitely.

Question : Do you think Talia will become more outgoing now that she has some heavy second thoughts about life with Psycorp? Maybe being more socialable with the B5 crew instead of all business.

Psi Andrea : So you want to see Talia cut loose, eh? I'm with you. I'd like to see her open up more, form some close relationships whether romantic or not.

HOL Live : Here is one from Watcher48:

Question : I heard that Ivanova would be developing Psi powers. Is this true?

Psi Andrea : Good things come to those who wait... ;-)

Question : Talia what got you in this business?

Psi Andrea : Ingrid Bergman in Casablanca. I thought if I could just do that, if I could be only a fraction as good as she was that I would be happy for the rest of my life.

HOL Live : Here is one from RoseBrgr2:

Question : Do you ever feel like the special effects take over, that you are "overshadowed" by all the flash?

Psi Andrea : Sure, but I'm not complaining. It's great to be part of something as exciting as Babylon 5. When I saw the first episode, last year, I was seeing the special effects for the very 1st time just like you were. It was thrilling. Like being 5 all over again.

HOL Live : Here is one from MerrickB:

Question : What is your/Talia's feelings regarding Bureau 13 - Particularly how much trust do you/Talia have in the Psi Corp. since the discovery of the "deceased" telepath?

Psi Andrea : Outwardly, Talia is the same as always. Loyal to the Corps. Inwardly, she has many fears and reservations. To express these, within the Corps, could mean death.

HOL Live : Here is one from Kdubose77:

Question : Have read either of the B5 books? You know, the first one, Voices, is very much a Talia story.

Psi Andrea : Yes, I did read Voices. And enjoyed it very much.

HOL Live : Here is one from JJMAYER:

Question : Are there any plans for Walter Koenig to return in his Psi Corp. role?

Psi Andrea : Definitely. And isn't he good at it. At playing such an evil character.

Question : Do you ever find yourself becoming more like the characters you play as time goes on?

Psi Andrea : Oh yeah, it's a big pitfall. Sometimes, when I'm playing a character who's dark. I'll begin to take on depressing characteristics. So, wild characters, wilder impulses. Every once in a while, I have to remind myself, this is just my job - don't get to carried away. I find it self-indulgent.

Question : How long does it take to make an episode?

Psi Andrea : 7 days. Of filming. Post, another week.

Question : Will there be a spinoff of b5

Psi Andrea : I don't know.

Question : How did you start your career in acting?

Psi Andrea : In New York City, I went and did the usual cliché waited tables and went to acting school.

Question : Do you ever read any Pournelle or Niven or any other Sci-fi writers?

Psi Andrea : I recently finished a book by David Brin, called Post Man. I found it extremely interesting, and quite chilling in light of the recent tragedy in Oklahoma City.

Question : Is there a good possibility that Talia is a double agent for PSI Corps?

Psi Andrea : Ya never know.

HOL Live : Andrea - You've been a wonderful guest! Is this your first venture into cyberspace? And will you come back on again for us?

Psi Andrea : Thank you! Yes, I was a cyber-virgin until this evening. And I'd love to come back! Keep tuning in!

HOL Live : Do you have any closing comments for our audience?

Psi Andrea : Good night America.

OnlineHost : We'd like to thank our guest Andrea Thompson for appearing with Hollywood Online's Inside Hollywood! transcript of this event will be available in the Hollywood Online Inside Hollywood Press Transcript Library within 24 hours!

OnlineHost : And while you're at Hollywood Online, play the "Swimming With Sharks" contest, and you can win a trip to LA and a walk on role in the next film from Trimark Pictures! In addition, see the new "Rob Roy" interactive kit available under the NEW MOVIE icon. Goodnight, America!

OnlineHost : Copyright 1995 America Online, Inc.

Transmitted: 95-08-07 23:29:04 EDT

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