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Alt.Tv.Xena FAQ, (Part 3/5): About the actors

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Archive-name: tv/xena-wp/Actors
Posting-Frequency: Bi-weekly or whenever
Last-modified: 15th February 2000
Copyright: (c) 1997-2000 Paul A Hilling
Copyright: (c) 1997 Edward T. Smith
Copyright: (c) 1997 A. J. Firebaugh
Copyright: (c) 1996 Michael L. Martinez
Maintainer: Paul Hilling (

See reader questions & answers on this topic! - Help others by sharing your knowledge
NOTE: This document is not intended to infringe upon MCA or
Universal Studios or Studios USA in any way.

Portions of this document are Copyright (C) 1996 by K. Wieczerza
and used by permission.  This file may be freely copied and
redistributed.  All I ask is that it remains whole and intact and
that this notice is not altered.
This document is intended to provide answers to certain questions
that come up regularly on the news group.  People who
are new to the news group are encouraged to read this document
before posting questions to

Michael Martinez originally created this FAQ in accordance with
the prevailing traditions and customs of the Internet, which
place high value on the free dissemination and exchange of
information.  It has since been trashed and rearranged it into
multiple smaller documents.

This is a living document.  As new information is made available
by the producers of XENA: WARRIOR PRINCESS I'll try to update
this file.  Also, corrections will be made as I discover them or
I am informed about them.  Please feel free to notify me of any
errors that you find. Paul Hilling <>
This FAQ is available via ftp from:  To
get a copy of this FAQ by e-mail, send an e-mail to with "ATX-FAQ REQUEST" in the subject.

This document uses the following conventions:

     Names of television shows are given in ALL CAPS.
     Names of episodes are given in "quotes".
     X:WP is an acronym for XENA: WARRIOR PRINCESS.
     X is sometimes used for "Xena", especially in making
     reference to both Xena and Gabrielle (as "X and G").
     LL is sometimes used for "Lucy Lawless".
     ROC is sometimes used for "Renee O'Connor".
     ATX refers to the newsgroup Alt.Tv.Xena

Table Of Contents

Section III: About the actors
1.   What can you tell me about Lucy Lawless, the actress who
     plays Xena? (Info, Bio, and Fan Clubs)
2.   What can you tell me about Renee O'Connor, the actress who
     play's Gabrielle? (Info, Bio, and Fan Club)
3.   Has Lucy Lawless always been a martial artist and/or
     naturally athletic?
4.   Do the actresses do their own stunts?
5.   What can you tell me about Hudson Leick? (Callisto)
6.   What about Kevin Smith? (Ares)
7.   What about Ted Raimi? (Joxer)

Section III: About the actors

What can you tell me about Lucy Lawless, the actress who plays
Xena? (Info, Bio, and Fan Clubs)

A more detailed biography is available at the MCA website

Birthday: March 29, 1968
Birthplace: Mt. Albert, Auckland, New Zealand
Eye Color: Blue
Hair Color: Honey Blonde
Height: 5'10 1/2" (According to Lucy)
Significant Other: Married to Robert Tapert. Exec Producer of

I know there is more info out there, but here is some to get you

Lucy Lawless is the fifth of seven children and is the oldest
girl.  Lucy got involved in acting and singing early on in school
musical and plays in what was mostly a convent education.  She
graduated at the age of 17 and attended Auckland University
briefly, but soon left for Europe and went grape picking on the
Rhine.  Following that Lucy even worked in a gold mining camp, in
Australia!  In Australia she married and then returned to

Lucy has one daughter, Daisy, born in 1988-9.  And a son, Julius
Robert Bay Tapert born on the 16th Oct 1999.

For those of you who haven't heard Lucy speak in interviews, her
natural voice doesn't sound very much like Xena.  She definitely
has a New Zealand accent, and her voice is not nearly so deep.

Lucy has a natural aptitude for languages and accents that
enables her to sound southern Californian.  Check out her David
Letterman interview, or see other interviews at Tom's Xena Page

You'll find lots more info and get to actually hear her speak!

Yes, Lucy dyes her hair black for the show. You can see her
natural hair in "Hercules and the Amazon Women".  Look for an
Amazon on a horse. She's also the one who horses around with Zeus
(played by Anthony Quinn).

Lucy's BIO:

     Television commercials in New Zealand
     A Presenter for a New Zealand Tv Station Travel Show.
     FUNNY BUSINESS: comedy troupe television show in New Zealand
     Peach (one of the four pieces in the work: Women From Down
     Rainbow Warrior (1992): movie (now available on video)
     HIGH TIDE: "Shanghaied" (1994) -- T.V. show
     HIGH TIDE: "Dead in the Water" (1994) -- T.V. show
     Hercules and the Amazon Women (1994) -- as Lysia, an Amazon
     (NOTE: the above was a 2 hour Action Pack movie -- before
     the H:TLJ series began...)
     H:TLJ: "As Darkness Falls" (1995) -- as Lyla, whose husband
     is the centaur Deric
     H:TLJ: "Outcast" (1996): again as Lyla -- wife of Deric and
     mother to Kiefer
     H:TLJ: "The Warrior Princess" (1995) -- our introduction to
     H:TLJ: "The Gauntlet" (1995) -- Xena's army turns against
     H:TLJ: "Unchained Heart" (1995) -- Xena's "conversion to
     H:TLJ: "Judgement Day" (1997) -- Strife tricks Hercules into
     killing the Golden Hind.
     H:TLJ: "Strangers In A Strange Land" (1997) -- Naughty Xena
     in a Mirror Universe.
     H:TLJ: "Armageddon Now : Part 2" (1998) -- Evil alternate
     universe version of Xena
     THE BLACK STALLION -- T.V. show (I don't know which episode)
     Grease: The Stage Musical (1997) -- Stage Musical, as Rizzo
     Her vocal talents were also used in the Animated Movie
     Hercules and the Battle for Mount Olympus.

For information on the XENA Fan Club, send a self-addressed
stamped envelope to:

Official Xena: Warrior Princess Fan Club
411 N. Central Ave. #300
Glendale, CA 91203
e-mail address is

All mail for Lucy Lawless should be sent to the Official Xena:
Warrior Princess fan club at the above address

There was an unofficial Lucy Lawless fan club, but it has now

What can you tell me about Renee O'Connor, the actress who play's
Gabrielle? (Info, Bio, and Fan Club)

A more detailed biography is available at the MCA website

Birthday: February 15, 1971
Birthplace: Katy, Texas, U.S.A.
Eye Color: Green
Hair Color: Blonde
Height: Almost 5'4" (according to ROC)
Significant Other: None of our business

The following is intended as a brief sketch at best...

Renee began studying acting in Houston at the age of 12.  She
enjoys jazz dancing, horseback riding, and many other sports. She
is single and lives full-time in Auckland, New Zealand. She
visits various states and cities while she is in the U.S.,
especially with her family in Houston and Austin, Texas.

Renee does not wear blue contacts.  Depending on how the lighting
is done, her eyes, can look blue.  (This is from a statement
Renee made.)

Also, the proper spelling of Renee is with the acute over the
last letter (a.k.a. the tick or single quote).  Yes, Renee has a
tick.  Given that this is basically an ASCII document, we can't
get too fancy so we are leaving Renee's tick out of these

Renee's BIO:

     TEEN ANGEL (1989): Disney Channel's Mickey Mouse Club serial
     MATCH POINT (1989): Disney Channel's Mickey Mouse Club
     Black Snow (1989)
     TALES FROM THE CRYPT: "The Switch"(1990)
     Danielle Steel's 'Changes' (1991)
     FBI: The Untold Stories (Blue Fibre) (1992)
     FBI: The Untold Stories (The Millionaire Murders) (1992)
     Sworn to Vengeance (1993)
     Flood: Who Will Save Our Children? (1993)
     The Adventures of Huck Finn (1993)
     Hercules and the Lost Kingdom (1994): playing the young
     Darkman II: The Return of Durant (1994)
     The Rockford Files: A Blessing in Disguise (1995): T.V.
     Follow the River (1995): a made for T.V. movie
     NYPD BLUE: "Oscar, Meyer, Weiner." T.V. series episode
     H:TLJ: "Judgement Day" (1997) -- In which Strife tricks
     Hercules into killing the Golden Hind.
     H:TLJ: "Strangers In A Strange Land" (1997) -- As the
     executioner in a Mirror Universe.
     H:TLJ: "Armageddon Now : Part 2" (1998) -- As a critic of
     the evil alternate universe version of Xena
     H:TLJ: "For Those Of You Just Joining Us" (1999) -- Playing
     Sunny Day
     Her vocal talents were also used in the Animated Movie
     "Hercules and the Battle for Mount Olympus".

The most up to date listing can be found at the Official Renee
O'Connor website (

According to Renee, due to time constraints, Her part in "The
Switch" ended up on the cutting room floor.

You can write too Renee at the following address

Renee O'Connor
P.O. Box 180435
Austin, TX 78718-0435

Renee's fan club has unfortunately had to close, but Renee's
Official website ( remains.
The web site contains a plethora of information about ROC
including interviews and childhood photographs, and is updated

Has Lucy Lawless always been a martial artist and/or naturally

Lucy learned some basic kung fu moves, sword, and staff work from
Douglas Wong in a brief visit to Los Angeles in 1995.  MCA says
"Though she had practised yoga for some time, Lucy had no special
training in martial arts, sword play, or stunt work when she
landed the role of Xena."  The MCA site goes on to say that she
did have some experience riding horses as a teenager.  Lucy
herself though is quoted in the Starlog Yearbook (1996) as being
bemused at landing such a physical role.  That in school her
nickname was Unco -- short for uncoordinated!  She says that she
is warming up to that aspect of the role and really enjoying it.

Do the actresses do their own stunts?

Lucy herself has said "If you don't see my face, there's a good
chance it isn't me doing the stunt".  Stunt double are used for
the gymnastic and more difficult horseback riding scenes.  Lucy
in particular is doing more and more these days.  Enough, as one
of the people involved with the show said, to be quite impressive
and make one occasionally a little nervous.

Lucy was injured on October 8, 1996 while filming a skit for THE
TONIGHT SHOW.  She was riding a horse across a parking lot in
full Xena gear.  The horse, though shod for pavements, slipped
and fell.  So, Lucy HAS been doing some of her stunts, but that
changed a bit after her accident.  Lucy had said on ENTERTAINMENT
TONIGHT (in January 1997) that she would return to doing her own
stunts, but at her own pace.

The show was changed due to Lucy's accident.  The ending for
"Intimate Stranger" was re-written so that "Ten Little Warlords"
could immediately follow that show, even though it was not
scheduled for filming.  Another obvious change is "The Quest,"
which features Bruce Campbell as the King of Thieves.  In "The
Quest," Xena invades The King of Thieves mind.  Lucy has only a
very small role in "The Quest."

It's also noticeable in some already-aired episodes, such as
"Intimate Stranger" that the actresses are sometimes placed in
wire harnesses which enable them to do some of the terrific flips
and rotations the show is so famous for.  In other cases stunt
doubles appear to be doing the work.

What can you tell me about Hudson Leick? (Callisto)

Xenites have generally fallen in love with Hudson.  Although most
prefer to keep Lucy in the title role, many hope to see Hudson
again in future episodes of XENA: WARRIOR PRINCESS, and some hope
she eventually gets her own show.

Her "real" name is Heidi Leick (pronounced Like). She changed her
stage name to Hudson.  As Hudson said in an interview, Heidi
Leick sounded too much like the name of a porn star.

She is really a brunette.

Xenites have reported seeing Hudson episodes of "Law and Order",
"Melrose Place", and "University Hospital".  She was on a couple
of episodes of "Touched By An Angel" in February, 1996.

Check XENA ONLINE RESOURCES for a list of web sites that are
either devoted to Callisto/Hudson or at least include her.  You
(  Hudson's fan club also
maintains a popular website (

What about Kevin Smith? (Ares)

Kevin Tod Smith is a native New Zealander, born March 16, 1963 in

He was in a band named "Say Yes to Apes" from 1983-1986, playing
the only guitar in the band and singing lead. The band made 3
albums and had a loyal following, but he qualifies his music as
being "very underground".

Kevin also played rugby for a period of time for various teams.
However, he suffered an unfortunate head injury which ended his
rugby career. He has held a great variety of jobs.

He met his lovely wife Suzanne in 1979 when he was just 16 years
old. They were married in 1986 and have three handsome young
sons, Oscar (born in 1991), Tyrone (born 1993) and Willard (born
Oct 97).

Suzanne is largely responsible for getting Kevin started in
acting. She signed him up for an Elvis impersonator contest in
1987. "It was actually a touring musical play about Elvis called
'Are You Lonesome Tonight'," he says. "I auditioned for the
'young Elvis' role. I got to be his understudy (I played JoJo the
bodyguard). The play collapsed in financial and artistic ignominy
in my hometown of Christchurch....excellent!!!" After this Kevin
went on to play several roles in New Zealand television, stage
and film, including Othello, Arsenic and Old Lace, Desperate
Remedies, City Life, and Marlin Bay, for which he was awarded a
New Zealand Film and Television Award for Best Supporting Actor
in 1995.

Thanks to Suzanne's efforts and Kevin's hard work and talent, we
now get to see him on a regular basis as "Ares" in Xena: Warrior
Princess and as "Iphicles", Hercules' half-brother in Hercules:
the Legendary Journeys.

BIO graciously provided by the Kevin Smith Official Fan Club,
(all rights reserved).  More information see the Kevin Smith fan
club website (

What about Ted Raimi? (Joxer)

Ted Raimi is from Detroit Michigan and is Sam Raimi's younger
brother.  He has previously been in a large number of films
He was also in the television series SEAQUEST which is now airing
on the Sci-Fi Channel.  If you would like further information,
please visit the new web page of the Ted Raimi International Fan
Club (

Aethelrede <>
Amita Guha <>
A. J. Firebaugh <>
Hudson Leick Fan Club (
K. Wieczerza -- aka "Kicker" <>
Kevin Smith Official Fan Club
Kym Masera Taborn <>
Michael Martinez <>
Pat Casciano <>
Paul Hilling <>
R. Carter <>
Renee O'Connor's Official Web Site
Ron Murillo <>
Ted Turocy <>
Tim Smith <>
Ted Raimi International Fan Club (
Whoosh (

(My thanks goto all of the other contributors not listed)

The original FAQ was written by Ted Turocy ( and
K. Wieczerza -- a.k.a. "Kicker" (  Kicker
maintained the original FAQ on her web site,, which now says
something like:  NOTE: This FAQ (by Kicker) has been turned over
to the people at WHOOSH!  The new URL is  This version of the FAQ has
been written and formatted specifically for distribution on the

Why are these documents is so long?  I don't know, except we're
quite involved with the show and believe in what we do or some
such thing :-)
---------------------------END OF FAQ----------------------------

Paul Hilling :- Alt.Tv.Xena FAQ Maintainer
                Alt.Binaries.Multimedia.Xena-Herc FAQ Maintainer

New to ATX? Read the FAQ @
    [Paul's Gabby Grotto]

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