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The Fresno Bee Rick Bentley column

August 11, 2014

By Rick Bentley, The Fresno Bee

Aug. 11--Karen Gillan -- best known for playing Amy Pond on "Doctor Who" -- shows up to talk about her new ABC series, "Selfie," sporting a new haircut. The long flowing red locks she had during her time on the British series have been replaced by a pixie cut.

Gillan had to cut off all her hair to play Nebula in the "Guardians of the Galaxy" movie.

"I knew when I went in for the role that I would have to shave my head. To be honest, I never thought I would get the role," Gillan says.

Don't worry about her long red hair. Marvel, the production company behind "Guardians," saved all of Gillan's hair and had it made into a wig. She wears that wig in the new TV comedy series, where she plays a self-obsessed woman who has countless friends online but none in real life and gets social skills training from the character played by John Cho.

Gillan knows the sci-fi world has been good to her. She doesn't regret that Amy Pond was written out of "Doctor Who."

"They gave me the wonderful, dramatic ending I wanted. And, they also gave Author (Darvill), who played my husband, a heroic ending," Gillan says.

Now she's on to other adventures, including learning to talk in the more campy American voice. The Scottish actress laughs and says the accent she is using on "Selfie" is the "bad American accent" she used to do as a joke when she first came to the States.

It's all French to me

Charlotte Le Bon grew up in Quebec.

In the new feature film "The Hundred-Foot Journey," a film that takes place in a small town in the south of France, her character works as a sous chef at a well-known French restaurant.

Though the French spoken in Canada and France is not quite the same, Le Bon had no problem with the French because she's been living in Paris for five years. During that time, her accent changed. It also helped that when she played Victoire Doutreleau in the film "Yves Saint Laurent," she had to drop her Quebecois accent, because her character wasn't Quebecois.

"And, my boyfriend is French Moroccan, so it was easy for me, too," Le Bon says. "Just about practice, and being influentiable -- can you say that? Influencable, c'est quoi? when you're being ..."


"Influenced, yeah," Le Bon says.

There's another big difference between France and Quebec, according to Le Bon. France is known for its passion for food. Quebec isn't. Le Bon would never cook a dish from Quebec if she was trying to impress someone.

"It would be really bad food. Food from Quebec is not known to be amazing. Even though you can eat really, really well in Montreal. It's crazy, it's one of the best cities I eat in. But, typical Quebec food is like food from people that work in the woods. It's potatoes and meat and sauce. So you don't impress people with that," Le Bon says. "I do something that looks difficult, but it's not really like risotto and stuff like that."

Not that bad

It always seemed a little strange to me when all of the reports and rumors were spreading that Katherine Heigl was impossibly difficult. It all started with some negative reports during the end of her run on "Grey's Anatomy."

Then there was a series of failed romantic comedy movies that didn't help her image at all.

This never sounded like the Katherine Heigl I interviewed multiple times during the run of "Roswell" from 1999-2002. I interviewed her so many times during that stretch because I really liked the show and Chowchilla native Ron Moore wrote several episodes. Heigl was always sweet and interesting.

As to the reports that Heigl couldn't get work, she says it was simply a matter of taking time off to be with her children.

She had to be talked into starring in the new NBC drama "State of Affairs," where she plays an adviser to the president. It was Alfre Woodard, who plays the president, who convinced Heigl she could work and be with her children.

"I didn't want to just come home and kiss them good night," Heigl says. "Alfre told me that my children would come to the set, eat a donut, go to my trailer and watch videos and then I could kiss them good night."

This certainly doesn't sound like the demon that Heigl has been made out to be. All I can say is that I spent another evening chatting with the sweet and interesting Heigl at the recent TV critics tour. It was just nice to see that there's a lot of the same Heigl today that was in the actress when she was 20.

TV and movie critic Rick Bentley can be reached at (559) 441-6355, or @RickBentley1 on Twitter. Read his blog at


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Source: Fresno Bee, The (CA)

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