Tracey Birdsall made the transition from Soap Opera to Film star several years back with the award-winning short film "Tick Tock", but it is her project a whole galaxy away that has the sci-fi side of me excited. Birdsall is set to play a renegade warrior in sci-fi saga "Rogue Warrior: Robot Fighter", the latest in her growing list of sci-fi credits, "Doomsday" and "Starship: Apocalypse" being the most recent films.
"Rogue Warrior: Robot Fighter" is a space opera of sorts that pits Birdsall against an evil droid Empire in a rally to save humanity. The film isn't set to be released until 2016, and sci-fi fans will recognize several of the locations from another well-known space saga. "Rogue Warrior: Robot Fighter" is just the beginning, fixed to be the first in a series of sequels, and the spring board for Tracey Birdsall's character to movie into her own film franchise. So I am excitely anticipating this film's release so that I may enter this epic new galaxy.
I had the opportunity to ask Tracey about her new and exciting adventure, one-I might add-that portrays a strong, capable female action star! We also talk about her transition into Sci-fi films,a genre she happily states as one she has been fond of since childhood, plus more. Check out my interview with science-fiction's new ass-kickin' diva, "Rogue Warrior: Robot Fighter" star "Tracey Birdsall.
A SOUTHERN LIFE: You play Sienna-a Rebel- in the upcoming sci-fi saga ROGUE WARRIOR: ROBOT FIGHTER, tell me about your character.
TRACEY BIRDSALL: Sienna is a rogue warrior trying to stop Artificial Intelligence from taking over the world. She is a multi-dimensional character who throws her heart, mind, body and soul into her mission… and then there’s a catch – her own self-discovery in the midst of it all. A discovery she’s not willing to face…
A SOUTHERN LIFE: How does your character in ROGUE WARRIOR: ROBOT FIGHTER fit in relation to the other characters?
TRACEY BIRDSALL: Sienna is the lead warrior in the film, the lead character with the most complex journey. That said, there isn’t a weak character in the film. Skullcrusher, my boyfriend in the film (played by Daz Crawford) has quite a journey of his own… There are lone warriors that we pick up along the way, my father figure Ralston (played by Stephen Manley – young Spock in STAR TREK 3)… but even that relationship turns to be very complicated and with me being quite misinformed. My sidekick in the film is actually a robot himself, but you’ll have to wait to see how it all interweaves!
A SOUTHERN LIFE: A lot of the scenes in ROGUE WARRIOR: ROBOT FIGHTER were filmed on at the same locations as RETURN OF THE JEDI, what was it like for you filming in such iconic and legendary locations?
TRACEY BIRDSALL: The experience was incredible! Growing up a sci-fi nut, to be in iconic locations from RETURN OF THE JEDI, PLANET OF THE APES, and STAR TREK… it was surreal. That said, my character was so defined that I was just living her life and fighting her battles. It was “real” at the time, and the locations (just like the costuming) bring it all to life in my mind. When you arrive at a location like that and put on the costume… you’re really ready to do battle. The “pinch me – this just happened” moment occurred many weeks later when the adrenaline died down a bit…
A SOUTHERN LIFE: I want to assume that you must be a STAR WARS fan, right? And sci-fi films, have you always been a fan?
TRACEY BIRDSALL: I’ve been a sci-fi fan since I was a small child, as my father was really into science fiction. I love it all, and I hate it when people try to make me pick my favorites as it’s like trying to pick your favorite child! I like it all… I relish in it and devour it.
A SOUTHERN LIFE: ROGUE WARRIOR: ROBOT FIGHTER is set up to be a franchise with sequels to come; does your character appear in the future saga chapters as well? There is also a spin-off series for your character THE GODS OF WAR; can you talk some about the spin-off?
TRACEY BIRDSALL: The spin off will be in production the second half of next year, so it will be another busy year for me. THE GODS OF WAR is set for 6-8 episodes initially… and yes, Sienna will be the central “Rogue Warrior” for the series so there’s more bruises to be had! It’s still in development although the outlining of the journey is about completed.
A SOUTHERN LIFE: You have worked with Neil Johnson on past projects, how did ROGUE WARRIOR: ROBOT FIGHTER differ from the previous films? Being corporeal is a plus considering your were a “ship”, well the voice, in DOOMSDAY and STARSHIP APOCALYPSE.
TRACEY BIRDSALL: Both the films DOOMSDAY and STARSHIP: APOCALYPSE was in post-production when I was brought on to voice their computer systems. That was the closest I’ve come to working in sci-fi so I was super honored to do it! Director Neil Johnson and I work really well together, and we phenomenally appreciate each other’s work and work ethic. ROGUE WARRIOR: ROBOT FIGHTER is many notches above any projects either of us had done previously (which really says a lot), so I expect audiences to be very pleased if they are fans of either or both of us!
A SOUTHERN LIFE: Do you know when fans can expect ROGUE WARRIOR: ROBOT FIGHTER to be released?
TRACEY BIRDSALL: It will be completed within the next few months, and premiering and releasing at the beginning of 2016.
A SOUTHERN LIFE: What can fans expect from Sienna and ROGUE WARRIOR: ROBOT FIGHTER that will set it apart from other space sagas?
TRACEY BIRDSALL: This is a really deep and character driven sci-fi, in addition to having all the action elements and journey’s through space. I think that the storylines and the characters and the journey is far beyond what we are used to seeing in Science Fiction films. Fans will be shocked at the reveals and the revelations as the story has the multi-layers that we are used to watching in dramas that are simply based on the storyline.
A SOUTHERN LIFE: You also have another film in post-production; AT THE EDGE OF TIME also directed by Neil Johnson. Can you talk about that film? What is it about, and what part does Dijanne play in the film?
TRACEY BIRDSALL: Yes, I do! We actually shot AT THE EDGE OF TIME prior to shooting ROGUE WARRIOR: ROBOT FIGHTER. AT THE EDGE OF TIME is a time travel film where the lead actor (Cyrano – played by Darren Jacobs) has a Messiah complex and is trying to re-write history to fulfil his own prophecy. I play Dijanne in the film – a general in her own army with the sole purpose of stopping him. Dijanne is another warrior for sure, but she’s nothing like Sienna in ROGUE WARRIOR: ROBOT FIGHTER… Dijanne is a righteous terrorist and the heart and soul of the film… so they each have their own journeys – albeit very different.
A SOUTHERN LIFE: Do you know when AT THE EDGE OF TIME will be released?
TRACEY BIRDSALL: AT THE EDGE OF TIME will be released at the end of 2016 and is currently in post-production.
A SOUTHERN LIFE: Again I want to thank you for your time with this interview. I have seen several of your films and enjoyed them.
TRACEY BIRDSALL: THANK YOU!!!