'V' teaser: Jane Badler talks about her return

Jane-BadlerImage Credit: Jeff Petry/ABCThe long wait for Jane Badler’s return is almost over! When V bows on ABC Jan. 4, it will feature a much-anticipated appearance by the franchise’s original reptilian boss – the evil Diana. EW talked to the Australian-based Badler — who appeared in the original NBC miniseries and its series sequel in the ’80s – about reprising the role that wasn’t so easy to score.

EW: How many episodes will you be in?
JANE BADLER:
I’m in all of them.

What was your initial reaction when the producers approached you about reprising the role?
Can I just tell you, when I heard that V was coming back, I could feel this huge swell just from my Facebook page that there was a lot of interest in it and my old character. I thought, that’s it, I’m coming back to the show! So I called my old agent, who told me I was ridiculous, that they weren’t going to be interested. And so that was that. Then I called the producer and met with him. Since then, the show got a new producer, so I did the same thing and met with him. But when this role came up, they weren’t thinking of me. Can you believe it? They called the character Diana as an homage to the original one, but it wasn’t the Diana. Crazy! Later, I got an email from my agent saying some person from Los Angeles wanted me to audition for the role of Diana and I went, what? That’s a hoax! How would anyone want me to audition? So I had to audition. And from what I hear, there were a lot of very well-known actresses who wanted the role, like big names, which is very flattering. But my audition was the best. So that’s how I got the role! It wasn’t, like, handed to me. Isn’t that kooky? So here I am with what I thought was going to be four episodes, and it turned into the whole season, which has been absolutely amazing. I’ve loved every minute of it. It’s been crazy to be back involved in it again.

How is your character re-introduced as Anna’s mom?
I think it’s a really powerful thing. It’s a whole Greek tragedy, mother-daughter. I was the queen before her. She imprisoned me. She put me in a dungeon, and everyone thinks that I am dead. And so she has become the new queen. Very early on, she comes to visit to me, so that’s when it is revealed that I am alive. It’s a whole power play — my different ways of ruling versus her ways of ruling. They make me out to be the more benevolent of the two. And perhaps I am, but I’m also the queen. That carries arrogance with it. It’s not just all nice. It also is revealed why I can’t leave the dungeon, which is all kind of exciting, too. There are lots of special effects.

Where is the dungeon?
I’m in the bowels of the ship. But in the hole where I live, they have recreated it like our planet. It’s like this extra -terrestrial terrain. It’s really cool.

Do you undermine Anna?
Yes. It does take a while but once people come to visit me by mistake, once people enter my lair…I can’t say what happens, but it’s huge last episode and hopefully viewers will flock to see the show because it will be amazing.

Is there a potential for you to come back?
I always thought I’d be a one-season person, but there is always that potential. It depends, I guess, on the reaction to me. I’m very pleased with this one season. It definitely did what I wanted to do!

Ratings weren’t so great for V‘s first season.
They are trying to reinvent it in their own way. You can never recapture something. Who knows why something becomes magic in its time? I don’t understand it. To this day, I get on my Facebook page because it gives me contact with the fans. And each day I might have 20, 30, or 40 messages from new people who all remember the old V. I just think, wow. Why? Why did it capture so many young people? I guess that was the genius of [creator] Ken Johnson and maybe it was the time we lived in. I don’t think the show will ever be that, but I still think it’s a very, very good series and I’d love to see it find some sort of an audience.

Does it air in Australia?
Yes it does, which is weird, because I got call from the local Channel 9 and they asked me if I would do publicity for it. That was very painful. It was like wheeling out the old. Let’s just put her in a wheelchair and wheel her out to do publicity! I had very mixed feelings about it. I did it because I have an album coming out and that’s been my main thrust in the last five years, I’ve been recording and performing. I haven’t done V conventions. I haven’t wanted to be that old Diana forever. But now that I’m in the new series, I’m very happy to promote it. It’s different.


Comments (77 total) Add your comment
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  • John

    Jane Badler Rocks!!

    • Jeff

      Heck yeah she does! What’s up with making her audition to play Diana??? That’s crazy.

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      • Heidi

        I found that interview to show her as quite an arrogant person, actually. Very condescending and self-centred.

      • lol

        she plays an evil alien. why wouldn’t she be arrogant, condescending, and.. oh, yeah, self-centered?

      • Tego Livi

        She looks like a wax museum version of herself, too. The features get more prominent with age and the thicker makeup makes the effect even more prominent.

      • Mau Fatt

        There is nothing arrogant about questioning why someone would make you audition for a role playing a character you made famous. She auditioned, which shows that was just an initial reaction and she was not above the process.

    • richard

      she was hot back in the day and STILL hot as hell today !!

  • Matt

    As a young kid in the 80’s that liked the original. This will give me a reason to seek the show out now (besides the lovely Ms. Mitchell of course).

  • Tajah

    I am amazed and shocked that they made JANE BADLER audition!! She made the original show and she is epic in her badassery. I am glad she got on the show and if they are smart, they will keep her.

    • Heidi

      she hasn’t done much in several years – its a big role. I don’t blame them for asking her to audition. She does look great and hopefully it brought her ego down a notch cause man does she sound conceited!

      • James

        Actually she’s done TV in Australia where she’s lived for years. I came here to read this article & noticed your psychotic comments about Jane being “conceited” and self centered. Really? Do you think a stuck up person would allow herself to read for a part that she helped create?
        i met Jane in the early 2000’s in NY randomly in a hotel and she was by far the nicest celeb i ever got to meet.
        And what I heard from fans say the same. she also has a reputation for responding to letters, emails to loyal fans. tell me how many actresses today do that.

  • Joyce

    She looks great! It is crazy that she had to audition for her own part. Can’t believe no one thought to go find her for the part to begin with. Good thing she was persistent. Loved the original…might check out this new version…esp. since Jane Badler is back.

  • Daryl

    She was INCREDIBLE in the original. I’m so excited she is returning. I also read that Marc Singer is going to play a role too. Its great they are using actors from the original. Can’t wait for the new episode!

  • hc

    Aaaaannnnddd….this is why actors have publicists. I mean, show a little tact.

    • Jennifer

      I know. Maybe I am just ready it wrong, but she sounded a little patronizing.

      • bamalam

        I don’t know…I think it is very refreshing to hear honesty and not the filtered out stuff that doesn’t cause waves. But really, I think she was addressing the fact that V didn’t have that good ratings and found it a little shocking to have to audition for a role that she previously held. I think she was thinking it would have been a no-brainer for her to automatically get the part…if just to possibly draw in the fans of the original V.

      • Erin

        I agree with bamalam, I didn’t read it as her being arrogant and I prefer honesty like this over the bland vanilla say what they want to hear PR crap some actors trot out.

      • AcaseofGeo

        I like her attitude entirely. Yeah she’s got a bit’o’chip on her shoulders, but clearly the producers hadn’t seen this amazing opp to bridge the phenomonally successful original mini-series to the new one. I also get her reluctance to be the old “wheelchair” bound adored-ancient at conventions. Though as a fan we would hope for swell and lovely perfection, it IS refreshing to see someone not tow a strict PR line.

  • John

    I’m glad they’re tying the original V with the new V. To tell the truth, Anna scares me. She just stares at you. It doesn’t matter what angle, she still stares INTO YOUR SOUL. And it scares me.

  • MWeyer

    Good lord, the woman doesn’t look like she’s aged since 1984.

  • Calil W

    YES YES YES. When the 2010 show was announced. I was one of the people who contacted Jane on her page about how I felt that the show could not be authentic without her presence on the show. Now, we finally get our wish! Making her audition….is/was ludicrous beyond belief. Her character WAS that show. Period.

    • Bob

      A little full of ourselves, aren’t we? You and thousands of others “contacted” her. Why are you so special?

      • Erin

        Nasty much? Perhaps re-read their post again. Calil certainly didn’t act like they were special nor the only one that contacted her, they just mentioned that they did so and that they’re excited about the outcome.

        Good on them.

  • dammmm

    this is totally going to be dynasty but with lizard bitches! poor joshua.

    • ell

      LOL

  • Alan of Montreal

    It’s great that she’s back! I find it funny how she almost sounds like a teenager in all her giddiness–it’s nice to see her enthusiasm

  • tracy bluth

    As someone who LOVED the original miniseries, I’m almost tempted to watch the new season. I tried to watch one episode because I love Elizabeth Mitchell, but got bored after like 10 minutes.

    • Jane

      Me too. I stayed with it all season hoping things would get better. It wouldn’t be so bad if they killed off dopey Tyler and they stopped having meetings about every damned thing. There were episodes where nothing happened in the show, other than people being concerned about something but not doing anything but talk about it. Sheesh! But Diana coming back makes me want to watch again.

  • Taisha

    No one in hollywood has an original thought, thus all the reboots. What TPTB fail to realize is the reason a show was successful in the first place: the ORIGINAL ACTORS!! Jane Badler having to audition for the role of Diana is beyond disrespectful and ridiculous to me. Im sorry but this version of V isnt as compelling as the original and I hope they bring some more of the original chracters back. Erica could be Donnovans and Julies daughter. The big question is who is Annas father? Hmmm

    • kathvdw

      Anna’s father? He was dinner. :-P

  • Terry Lee Dallas

    I wasn’t feeling the first season. Now that they got Jane Badler to come on. I’ll watch season 2.

  • tipsy

    I hope Diana eats Tyler. Memo to the writers:TYLER IS NOT POPULAR WITH ANY DEMOGRAPHICS INCLUDING TWEEN AND TEEN GIRLS FOR WHOM HE IS OBVIOUSLY DEVISED! GIRLS AND WOMEN HATE THIS DOPEY BORING MONKEY AND WISH HIM DEAD! THEY LOVE JOSHUA AND HOBBS AND WANT JOSHUA AND LISA TO HOOK UP!

    So, yeah, have Diana get rid of the show`s biggest deadweight. It would be perfect.

    • John

      I’d like Tyler to come to a slow and tortured end. That would give the show some tension and get rid of a tired and cliche driven character.

      Lose the kid! He sucks.

    • Heather P

      Yep. I totally agree with this. It’d be better than Diana eating the guinea pig. I watched some of the behind the scenes stuff with the actor who plays Tyler on ABC’s website and it makes me want the character of Tyler eaten all the more. Then Elizabeth Mitchell can go all Badass on the aliens in retribution.

    • Tia

      Speak for yourself! A lot of us LOVE Tyler.

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