Hollywood has a go-to tough girl, and her name is Michelle Rodriguez. Ever since her breakout role in Girlfight, the 2000 indie where she played a troubled teen who finds her identity through boxing, Rodriguez has dominated the market on roles that call for a tough, no-nonsense beauty who can throw a punch without breaking her withering glare. Not only is she the alpha-female in the Fast and the Furious franchise, but she piloted a space chopper in Avatar, played a vengeful ex-cop on Lost, and scrapped with aliens in Battle: Los Angeles.
EW caught up with Rodriguez at the Los Angeles premiere of Fast & Furious 6, to talk about Machete Robert Rodriguez, her love of DC comics, and her frustration with female comic-book characters.
Rodriguez’s next live-action release is director Robert Rodriguez’s Machete Kills (Oct. 13), his sequel to 2010’s Machete. “Robert’s crazy mind is something that can’t easily be explained,” Rodriguez said with a laugh. But she assured us that it will be all kinds of wild. “The most insane thing you can think of? It’s crazier than that.”
Rodriguez’s ability to craft a career out of playing these kick-ass women doesn’t mean that the roles are readily available, though. Especially in the genres she loves. We’ve heard her talk about this subject generally before. At last year’s Comic-Con panel for Resident Evil: Retribution, Rodriguez praised director Paul W. S. Anderson for helping to bring characters like Alice (Milla Jovovich) and Rain (Rodriguez) to the big screen. “It’s rare that an American man director would have that open-mindedness about having a female lead, and fight the way Paul did. You know what I mean? Big ups to you, I give you mad love for that, Paul.”
Though she counts herself a fan of action-movies, her true love is the world of comics. “I was a big Iron Man, Superman, and big Spider-Man fan. I love all the DC Comic characters,” she said. “I love all the great male superheroes. They’re awesome. I especially love the rebellious ones like the Punisher. Like when he went head to head with Spider-Man? That was so cool!”
But don’t think that she hasn’t noticed the lack of strong female characters in the comics she loves. “There aren’t a lot of chicks that I like at all in comics,” she admitted, adding that Catwoman is a rare exception. “As a matter of fact, in order to have one, I’d probably have to invent one. They just don’t exist now.”
So, PopWatchers and comic book fans, what do you all think of Michelle’s gripe? Do you agree that there’s a lack of awesome female superheroes? Are there any characters or comics that she should be aware of?
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