Tuesday, December 11, 2012
Eliza Dushku: Faith, Buffy the Vampire Slayer
Eliza Dushku: Faith, Buffy the Vampire Slayer
Faith is a fictional character created by Joss Whedon for the television series Buffy the Vampire Slayer. Played by actress Eliza Dushku in the TV series and by Whitney Thompson in the motion comic series, Faith was introduced in the third season of Buffy and was a focus of that season's overarching plot. She returned for shorter story arcs on Buffy and its spin-off, Angel. The character's story is continued in the comic book series Buffy the Vampire Slayer Season Eight, and she also appears in apocryphal material such as other comic books and novels. Faith was set to receive her own spin-off television series after the final season of Buffy, but Eliza Dushku declined the offer, and the series was never made. Faith will co-star in the 25-issue comic book Angel and Faith beginning in August 2011 under the banner of Buffy the Vampire Slayer Season Nine, the story taking place mostly in London and the surrounding area. Seven years after the character's creation, Whedon granted her the surname Lehane for a role-playing game and subsequent material. The last issue of Season Eight was the first source officially confirmed to be canon that referred to Faith by her full name.
Faith is a Slayer: a girl endowed with supernatural abilities and destined to battle evil creatures such as vampires and demons. Created as a foil to the protagonist, Buffy Summers, she is a Slayer who comes from a damaged background and often makes the wrong decision. Initially an ally to the main characters, events take a toll on Faith's sanity and she slips into a villainous role. Later storylines show her feeling remorse for her past crimes, and with Angel's help she eventually rejoins the side of good in the hopes of achieving redemption.
Eliza Patricia Dushku (play /ˈdʊʃkuː/; (born December 30, 1980) is an American actress known for her television roles, including recurring appearances as Faith on Buffy the Vampire Slayer and its spinoff series Angel. She starred in two Fox series, Tru Calling and Dollhouse. She is also known for her role in films including True Lies, The New Guy, Bring It On, Wrong Turn and Jay and Silent Bob Strike Back, as well as her voice work on video games.
Dushku came to the attention of casting agents when she was 10. She was chosen in a five month search for the lead role of Alice in the film That Night. In 1993, Dushku landed a role as Pearl alongside Robert De Niro and Leonardo DiCaprio in This Boy's Life, a role that she said opened a lot of doors. The following year, she played the teenage daughter of Arnold Schwarzenegger and Jamie Lee Curtis in True Lies. She had parts as Paul Reiser's daughter in Bye Bye Love, as Cindy Johnson in Race the Sun, and roles in a television movie and a short film.
Dushku took time off from acting to finish her junior and senior years of high school. She was accepted to the George Washington University in Washington, D.C. and Suffolk University in Boston, where her mother serves as professor of government and previously served as dean of the campus in Dakar, Senegal.
After completing high school, Dushku returned to acting with the role of Faith on Buffy the Vampire Slayer, a Slayer much more troubled than the main character Buffy Summers. Though initially planned as a five episode role, the character became so popular that she stayed on for the whole third season and returned for a two-part appearance in season four, after which the remainder of her original story arc was played out as part of the first season of the Buffy spin-off series Angel. Repentant and rededicated, Faith returned as a heroine in other episodes of Angel and in the last five episodes of Buffy. Dushku was inundated with piles of fan mail from legions of prisoners. She said:
I've been getting fan mail from maximum security penitentiaries and death row. What are the authorities thinking of in playing a show with young teenage girls to Death Row inmates? They write everything – disgusting things that you don't even want to know about. And they send me pictures – "Oh, here's a picture of me before I was incarcerated!" – and there's some guy sat on the sofa with a bottle of beer and a moustache, and a big gut. It's so creepy. Way more creepy than Buffy.
In 2000, Dushku starred in the hit cheerleader comedy Bring It On. She followed that up with Soul Survivors, reuniting her with Race The Sun co-star Casey Affleck. One reviewer described the film as "84 minutes of everyone's wasted time". In 2001, she appeared in The New Guy with DJ Qualls and City by the Sea with Robert De Niro and James Franco. The latter film garnered attention from a wider adult audience and several good reviews. The same year, Kevin Smith invited Dushku to be a part of Jay and Silent Bob Strike Back.
In 2003, Dushku starred in the horror film Wrong Turn, and The Kiss, an independent comedy-drama. Starting that same year, she starred in a new Fox TV series, Tru Calling, where she played the main character, medical student Tru Davies. After having a grant pulled out from under her, Tru is forced to take a job at a local morgue where she discovers her power to "re-live" the previous day over again if one of the deceased asks for her help to change what has happened. Dushku turned down a role in a spin-off of Buffy The Vampire Slayer which would have been about Faith. She has had many roles as a "bad girl" in movies and relishes the opportunities. In an interview with Maxim in May 2001, Dushku says of her roles, "It's easy to play a bad girl: You just do everything you've been told not to do, and you don't have to deal with the consequences, because it's only acting." -Wikipedia