Terri Hawkes, the voice of Sailor Moon, joined Anime Revolution 2012 as part of a special 20th Anniversary Sailor Moon Celebration Panel.
Check out the following interview where Terri talks about her voice acting and acting careers and her thoughts on Sailor Moon.
AR: Hi Terri. How are you?
TH: Hi Sean Good, thank you.
AR: Are you enjoying this convention?
TH: I’m having a blast. The enthusiasm here is infectious.
AR: That’s great.
TH: Yeah, it’s great. The costumes, the ambiance, the lines of people, their patience, waiting to get into panels and chat with voice actors and that kind of thing. And I mean it’s great. I’ve had some wonderful conversations.
AR: Yeah, people are dedicated and especially since it’s the 20th anniversary for Sailor Moon.
TH: Yeah. The turnout is spectacular.
AR: So you are the Sailor Moon.
TH: I am Sailor Moon. I really love being associated with that character but I also want to say that there were two other actors who had a part in voicing Sailor Moon at various times. So Tracy Moore started out for the first episodes then I took over and I was with it for quite a while, many, many episodes and three films. And then in the I think it was it was about the final season, Linda Ballantyne took over. I was pregnant with twins and it was just a little bit healthier to just focus on that at that time in my life.
AR: Because it takes a lot of energy to do all those voicing overs.
TH: We were talking in a panel earlier and this is a very physical show, so people probably don’t usually imagine voice actors as being very physical when they’re behind the mic like this. But Sailor Moon and the other Sailor Scouts are off saving the world, you know, fighting the Negaverse. And so when they’re leaping, jumping, twirling, and things like that, usually we, as voice actors, try to simulate that physical movement as much as possible. So that our breathing emulates the characters that you see on the screen, and so that we sound as natural as possible. It’s a very physical job and Vincent was saying earlier after 4 hour sessions he just found himself drenched at times because it’s, it’s grueling but fun and rewarding.
AR: So after you stop with Sailor Moon, was there any other animations that you went onto for voiceovers?
TH: I’ve done quite a few in my career. Quads came after that. Quads was a lot of fun and I was on Care Bears. I did the role of Princess Sissi. And- oh gosh, so many over the years. I’ve also done theatre, film, television and right now I’m focusing on play writing, directing and I’m in graduate school studying women studies. Yeah, I hope to participate in telling more stories about girls issues and women issues and get involved in more than I already am in activist theatre. So that’s the plan right now.
AR: That’s great. So with the new Sailor Moon series that’s coming out, if they offered you, would you take the role again?
TH: You know, I kind of shifted my focus away from voice acting for now. But I was just asked that and I said ‘never say never’. This has been a wonderful experience, it’s a great cast, the stories are very special. I think Sailor Moon itself was a very special series as kind of a gateway to anime. It’s one of the first opportunities for young people to look at a female hero or a heroine, and a character who had a voice as a girl was empowered. Had a place in saving the world from the Negaverse, and I think that’s really important. What I’ve sensed here and I’ve sensed in other places, is that that has profoundly impacted on some of the audience members. Certainly I’ve feel privileged to have been a part of it, and I think that the messages that came through in the series were really important: about self-esteem, growth, and, as I said, empowering for young girls. So, that’s quite a long answer to your question but if I was asked to follow through on future shows I would be privileged. I’d feel privileged to be a part of this company again.
AR: That’s great, I’m sure everyone hopes you do get the role.
TH: Oh thank you, that’s very kind.
AR: So, this is the first year that Anime Revolution has been here.
TH: So I understand! Good job, good job!
AR: It actually turned out really well. Would you recommend this convention to any of your fellow colleagues?
TH: I would. I would. Now so I have been talking for the last couple of days to people who have come to Vancouver from Vancouver Island, from Alberta, from- I think somebody from the States, from all over. So people have come quite a distance to get here and they all seemed thrilled to be here. And I’m looking around at all the things you have to offer: the artist way, the videos. My kids were here earlier and they were shopping over here with all of this merchandise, the panels, and the role-playing. There’s a real variety of opportunities here that I think kind of fits different interests and different needs. So yes, I’d say you’ve covered a large ground, and I’m sensing that any minor sort of kinks like lineups and some are being worked out as we speak. So I would say for a first time effort, this is a wonderful, wonderful effort and wonderful turnout and a great enthusiastic participatory ambience and I’d say that people would have a lot of fun being here.
AR: That’s great!
TH: Yeah, I really hope you do it again.
AR: Yeah, I hope so too. Just to finish off here, for any aspiring voice actors, would you have any advice for them?
TH: I was just asked that about 5 minutes ago. For people who are considering a career in the arts in general: be it acting, writing, or directing, what I often say is if you are passionate about it; if it is something that really speaks to you and there’s not really anything else that could give you as much joy in your life, I’d say pursue it. Give it all you’ve got. If there’s something else that really appeals to you, it might be prudent to check that out because it’s a tough business. It’s really demanding, challenging, taxing, and hard to make a living at times. I feel very fortunate I’ve been able to make a living doing something that I love. But it’s tough, so I just would want people to go into it with open eyes to really appreciate the craft of acting and writing and directing for what it is. But really be sure that that’s what you want to do if you’re going to spend your life pursuing that.
AR: So just to finish off, could we get a battle cry?
TH: You want a battle cry? I think something that speaks to me when I think of Sailor Moon I think of this one: Moooon Healing ACTIVATION!
TH: I think I’ve blown a few eardrums here.
AR: That’s great, well thank you very much for joining us today.
TH: My pleasure thanks for having me Sean, it’s been a treat.
Interview and video production done by Hype Life Films.