The Voice of Nova
Amy played the role of Nova on the first two seasons
of Star Blazers(Yamato) in the 70's. After a few years she got back into the anime business by attending various conventions and has now landed her newest role in the Irresponsible Captain Tylor OVA series.
Star Blazers, Irresponsible Captain Tylor
Interview taken over the internet. (Feb. 2000)
- WHAT FIRST GOT YOU MOTIVATED INTO VOICE-ACTING?
I graduated form the American Academy of Dramatic Arts in 1975. When Star Blazers was being cast, I was working at Weist-Barron School for TV and Commercial acting. Kit Carter, the casting director, called the school for non-union performers to audition for a new show from Japan. It was my first paying job as an actress.
- AT THE TIME YOU WERE DOING STAR BLAZERS, DID YOU EVER THINK ABOUT THE IMPACT IT WOULD HAVE ON AMERICAN VIEWERS?
As with any new show, you hope everyone is going to think its the best they've ever seen. It's a god show that everyone can watch without any sort of hesitation and that's what I liked most about it. My family and friends loved it, but when it was taken off the air, I thought it would always only be a fond memory. When I found 3 years ago that there were still so many fansd who loved the show, I was stunned!
- DO YOU THINK YOU HELPED DEVELOP THE CHARACTER OF NOVA AS SHE WENT ALONG?
Well, I identified with her(I've often been told that she and I are alot alike!) and that helped in me decide how to do her voice. As I recall, the only direction I was given, as far as characterization went, was to be myself. I'm so glad they didn't have us doing silly, contrived 'cartoon' voices. We were real people voicing real characters-a good mix, in my radio.
- HAVE YOU SEEN ANY OTHER ANIME ASIDE FROM YAMATO THAT YOU'VE LIKED?
I wish I had the time to really sit down and give some of the other shows a fair chance. I've seen partial epsidoes of some other shows at the anime cons, and quite frankly none of the ones I've ever seen even come close to the quality of Star Blazers.
- WHAT DO YOU THINK OF LEJI MATSUMOTO'S OTHER WORKS?
I have seen some of his other work, and I'm looking forward one day to adding it all to my collection!
- DO YOU KEEP IN TOUCH MUCH WITH THE REST OF THE STAR BLAZERS CAST?
Yes! Fortunately, we've located Ken Meseroll(Derek Wildstar), Tom Tweedy(Mark Venture), and Eddie Allen(Leader Deslok). It's good to be back in touch after all this time. We may have a lead on a couple of the cast members as well.
- ANY NEWS ON THE LIVE-ACTION YAMATO MOVIE?
I wish there were. The last I heard, there were legal matters to be sorted out and the project is shelved for the time being.
- DO YOU THINK STAR BLAZERS HAS HELPED DEFINE ANIME IN AMERICA TODAY?
Star Blazers is quite simply, the best anime ever produced. One of the nicest things I've heard is that it is the standard by which the other shows are judged. It has, most definately, stood the test of time! In the years since though, in my opinion, the quality of alot of the programming has been compromised. Too many shows are violent simply for violence sake, or sleazy just because it sells. That has to be the most worn out excuse I've ever heard. What it boils down to is that they can't be bothered puting 5 minutes worth of creativity into a given project-they're just after the quick buck. I am so glad that I can hold my head up-20 years later-and be proud of the work we did!
- FANSUBS OF YAMATO: FOR OR AGAINST?
Ah, that age old debate.....if the sub is well done, I'm for it. Sure, I'd rather be in the sound booth...
- ENTERPRISE(ORIGINAL) VS. YAMATO: WHO WOULD WIN AND WHY?
Well, in Amyland.....they would fly into battle, side by side, to defeat the enemy and restore peace and tranquility to all peoples of the universe!!!!!
- ANY ADVICE TO ANIME VOICE-ACTOR WANNABES?
Yes-I've said it before and I'll say it again-be very clear about what your goals are. I can't stress that enough. Priority one-if you're in school, stay there and finish your education. Doing the voice for an animated character is a whole lot of fun, but simply must keep in mind that this is a business. If you go into it with the idea that you're going to make a million dollars overnight-forget it. You must be ready for alot of rejection and alot of hard work. A good first step might be to study with a voice coach. They can give you the training you may need, help put your demo together, introduce you to agents and casting directors. Don't be afraid to ask lots of questions-how long they have been teaching, etc. If you believe in your talent and believe that you're ready to conduct yourself properly in the business world, then go for it!