Interview: Molly Quinn On Voicing Supergirl In ‘Superman: Unbound’

supergirlSuperman may have been flooded with a variety of villains over the years, but through time he gained a number of valuable allies. One of the strongest of his group happened to be another Kryptonian like himself; Supergirl. We’ve seen various animated incarnations of her, the latest being in “Superman: Unbound.” The Kryptonian duo have their hands full as they go up against one of their most powerful villains, Brainiac. Actress Molly Quinn, best known for her work in “Castle,” voices the super heroine in the new animated feature. During WonderCon she shared her thoughts on how much fun it was voicing Kara Zor-El.

As you thought about Supergirl, what was the key to how you wanted to play her?

Molly Quinn: I wanted to make sure that she was strong and that, even when she argued and had her little moments of teenaged angst, she knew, deep down inside, what she was going to do. She would ask advice, after she had her mind made up. I think that’s just completely fun, and so real. I think a lot of times when people play superheroes, they stick with this, “I am a superhero,” but the truth is that we’re all human and that human quality is really important to bring.

Was it weird to play an icon and to know that people have thought about Supergirl, for generations, and imagined what she was like?

Molly Quinn: Oh, gosh! I tried not to think about any of that. I just tried to focus on how much fun it was. But, now that you’re saying that, I’m like, “Oh, my god, I hope they like it! Did I play it right? Are they going to be upset that I’m a redhead, in real life?” I want the people to be happy. I loved getting the job, but whatever I do, I like making good movies because I like to watch good movies. As long as I can do that, I’m happy. And I hope people enjoy Supergirl because I liked [playing] her, a lot.

For people who have never seen an animated movie, what would you say to them to get them to watch it?

Molly Quinn: It’s a great fantasy. You’re going to enjoy it, from the beginning to the end. There’s enough humor mixed in with the fighting. There are enough rest stops. You’re going to enjoy it, but you’re not going to get worn out. Also, Brainiac is incredible, just that entire character, in general. It’s phenomenal! That would be my biggest selling point.

Do the action scenes require you to just do a lot of grunting and yelling in the booth?

Molly Quinn: Yes, absolutely! And that’s the most fun. One of the scenes said something like, “Supergirl punches through 10 androids in a row, going in a circle formation.” I remember being in the booth and going, “Okay, how would I do this?” So, I do this whole thing and, when they put it together, it looked better than I could have imagined. In the booth, I know a lot of people will just stand there and do it, but I really enjoyed getting into it. I’ll throw those punches and I’ll act like I’m being thrown aside. Whenever there are winks, I try to do the whole thing. People think I’m ridiculous, but I think it adds something really important to the performance. It’s fun!

Nathan Fillion is both a geek and a veteran of voice-overs in the DC world. Did he have any influence on you doing this, or you wanting to do this? Did he give you any insight into the process?

Molly Quinn: You know, he didn’t. I’d like to say that he did, but he didn’t. The only thing that Nathan ever says, when I ask him for any type of advice is, “You’re in this industry. That’s enough. If you weren’t good, you wouldn’t be here.” I’m always like, “Thanks, Nathan! I appreciate it!” That’s his words of wisdom, and it is true. He’s funny.

Do you have to be more uninhibited to do voice-over work or on-camera work?

Molly Quinn: I think it’s equal. That’s very interesting because it comes out in two completely different ways. Definitely in voice-over, you have to be completely uninhibited. More than that, you have to put yourself back into the enjoyment of pretending. Whereas in live-action, you do need to be completely uninhibited, but it’s different. It’s more laid-back and about having a conversation. With voice-over, you have to pretend like you’re three, except you can talk and read. Both times, you have to be uninhibited, but it’s two different types.

What do you love about the world of sci-fi, fantasy and superheroes, and the fan world that comes with it?

Molly Quinn: Oh, gosh! For example, I’m reading The Wheel of Time, and I’m on Book 6 right now. I get so into it, and then I’ll close the book and be so sad because I love living in that world. That’s where I want to be. I want to be an astronaut. That’s what I want. I enjoy that the escape is there, and I like meeting other people that enjoy it, as well. I think it’s awesome to be able to have a place where you can dress up as those characters. I also think it takes so much bravery. People think it’s silly, but it takes a strong person to be able to do that. Only when you know yourself are you able to become those other people. That’s true enjoyment. You can’t do that unless you’re firm in who you are. I think these people are absolutely incredible, and I look up to a lot of them.

Is there another superhero or a character in a fantasy novel that you would love to play?

Molly Quinn: I loved doing Supergirl, but I would love to do Batgirl. I would absolutely love to do a live-action Batgirl.

“Superman: Unbound” will be released on Blu-ray/DVD on May 7th.

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Joseph Jammer Medina

Joseph Jammer Medina is an author, podcaster, and contributor at LRM Online. A graduate of Chapman University's Dodge College of Film and Television, Jammer's always had a craving for stories. From movies, television, and web content to books, anime, and manga, he's always been something of a story junkie.

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