CraveOnline talks to Tawny Cypress and Santiago Cabrera of Heroes.
The Heroes cast is big and international, but it’s still male dominated. One of the three women with super powers was killed off, so now there’s only Nikki, Claire and the powerless Simone. But looking really hot is enough of a super power for us, so Tawny Cypress is a hero to us. Where would Isaac be without a lover to get clean for, and where would Peter be without a girlfriend? Yes, it’s nice to have Tawny Cypress in Heroes.
CraveOnline: Are you bummed your character doesn’t have a super power?
Tawny Cypress: Okay, I am a huge comic book fan. Advanced Dungeons and Dragons, I played that as a child. A little bit disappointed that I don’t have a super power but I understand the importance of somebody normal to the show. I really do and I get it and I embrace that.
CraveOnline: Do you and Sendhil Ramamurthy hang out and commiserate?
Tawny Cypress: No, actually we go, "But your guy gets to do that." And he goes, "But your girl gets to do that," so it’s sort of one-upmanship.
CraveOnline: Don’t Heroes also need Sidekicks?
Tawny Cypress: Ha, that’s cool. I’ve never even thought about that before. I’m the Lois Lane of the Heroes world and I totally embrace that. Are you kidding? Have you seen the boys that pass my lips? Actually, me and Adrian have our own little backstory that we haven’t told the writers. I’m a slut apparently. I just get around quite a bit and its fun.
CraveOnline: Are you hoping for your character to choose Peter or Isaac, or create a love triangle?
Tawny Cypress: Okay, as a woman who has been in destructive relationships that involve drugs, I will say that I understand her dilemma. And I understand the nice guy versus the not so together guy. And I am rooting for my character to be happy. And I like being with Milo. He’s sunshine. But Santiago was fun.
CraveOnline: Are you involved in real life?
Tawny Cypress: I am with somebody. I have a boyfriend, Tom Dillon who’s my dear.
CraveOnline: Is he also an actor?
Tawny Cypress: No, no, he’s a restaurateur so I got lucky with that.
CraveOnline: Would another actor be bad luck?
Tawny Cypress: I dated my share of actors and I love anybody who’s very passionate about what they do.
CraveOnline: There are a lot more male heroes than female, what do you think of that?
Tawny Cypress: Gosh, now you’ve got me thinking about it. I think that there should be more female heroes obviously, if you’re asking me. And I think that like Masi said, a hero doesn’t have to have a power.
CraveOnline: Have they ruled out ever giving you a super power?
Tawny Cypress: There is nothing written in stone, my friend. The rules have been thrown out the window when they wrote the pilot for this. So I could get a super power. I’m not counting on it though.
CraveOnline: Wouldn’t it be great if one of the normals ended up saving the day while the Heroes were all busy?
Tawny Cypress: Oh my God. Where’s Tim? That is a great idea. I totally agree. Wouldn’t it be great?
CraveOnline: Is he open to suggestions? Can you tell him you’ve got an idea?
Tawny Cypress: I could but they would probably laugh at me and I couldn’t even try because I’m not a writer. This is their baby. I enjoy being a pawn. I don’t want to be the director. I don’t want to be the producer. Put me on the tape and let me go.
CraveOnline: What’s coming up for Simone?
Tawny Cypress: I get to believe. I get to have fun with the guys and I get to explore the love more. I’m the one character who gets to explore the most love in the show. Me and Noah, Noah has parents who love him to death. But we get to explore the aspects of love. Isaac comes back to me sober and it’s a whole new day.
CraveOnline: Who is your favorite villain?
Tawny Cypress: Ooh, that’s a good one. Favorite villain, I’m not going to say The Joker, I’m going to say Jack Nicholson as The Joker is my favorite villain of all time because he’s so lovable. I would so be splattered with acid for Jack Nicholson.
CraveOnline: What do you think of Heath Ledger doing it now?
Tawny Cypress: Get out of town. Wow, those are some big shoes to fill. I want to see it. I’m a super hero freak and I can’t wait to see whoever thinks that they can bring it, I don’t know if you can get better than Jack Nicholson though.
CraveOnline: How has Heroes affected you personally?
Tawny Cypress: It’s affected my bank account quite a bit and it’s affected my status in the acting world which is great. It’s all a roller coaster ride and I’ve taken baby steps my whole life, so this is another baby step for me. I don’t get recognized going to the Coffee Bean and Tea Leaf at all. Actually, there’s a girl behind the counter who always wants to know what’s going on next but the people around her are like, ‘What are you talking about? I don’t even know this person.’
Isaac Mendez’s power is more of a burden. He can paint the future, but that just means he knows bad things are going to happen and has to convince people. Plus, he couldn’t even do it sober for the first half of the year. Santiago Cabrera got to be mighty intense in the role of Isaac, so chilling out with him at a mellow party was a cool change of pace.
CraveOnline: What’s coming up for Isaac?
Santiago Cabrera: Well, we’re taking it from what you saw which is Isaac discovering he can do it sober so that’ll be a new side of him that you’ll definitely see, but there’s a whole thing of on the loft of Isaac’s floor in New York, he did a drawing of New York blowing up so definitely he wants to stop that. But all these things going around, you never know if he could end up relapsing. You don’t know what could happen.
CraveOnline: We talked to Tawny, are you hoping for more romance with Simone?
Santiago Cabrera: Yeah, Isaac wants her back. He’s sober and he obviously wants his girl back, but maybe it’s a bit too late. She starts to hear everything she would have wanted to hear but maybe a little bit too late.
CraveOnline: Are they going to explain how you learned to paint without drugs?
Santiago Cabrera: Well, in a way, I think it was always in him. Sometimes people ask me, do you think it’s the heroin? I think he’s a tortured soul, Isaac. Like many artists he’s very sensitive and I think the drugs just gave him the confidence to make him believe that he could do it but it was always within him. I think what we saw was just him tapping into his own, internally into himself and that’s what brought it out. So I think it’s kind of self-explanatory in a way. At least we know it’s more about him than the drugs.
CraveOnline: Can you draw anything?
Santiago Cabrera: I’ve been painting since I got this role, since the pilot so I just bought my canvases and paints. I’m pretty good at copying. I don’t paint from my own imagination but I’m having fun with it. Tim Sale, [the artist who actually paints Isaac's paintings], I went to meet him as soon as I got the role and he showed me his studio and the way he works and stuff and he still sends me a lot of the drawings beforehand. I’ve even had a little bit of input, not that he needs any help, he’s a great artist, but telling him who I think the character is and where he’s coming from and his influences. He’s taken a lot of that on so it’s been great.
CraveOnline: So Sale does the paintings, but we see your hands adding some touches?
Santiago Cabrera: I’m drawing, I’m doing the outline. I end up doing the beginning of a painting or coloring in the end of a painting. That’s mainly the fact that I started painting quite a few months ago now has helped me to feel very natural with it and even sometimes give my input. Just the fact of how do you hold a brush and how do you do it, but obviously, you don’t’ have a whole minute of me painting. It’s always glimpses but it’s always me, at least on camera. The final thing, I just get to look good with what Tim’s done.
CraveOnline: Have you been to NY?
Santiago Cabrera: I’ve been to New York a lot. I grew up in London but I’m from Chile originally. So I lived a long time in London.
CraveOnline: Who do you hang out with most on the show?
Santiago Cabrera: Well, we’ve done a lot of, I think when we hang out it’s a group thing. We’ve really gotten to know each other well. There’s a good group dynamic and people have put their house for things. We’ve already gone to a few peoples’ houses or to restaurants together so I would say in general, there’s a good vibe in the whole group.
CraveOnline: Everyone’s converging in Isaac’s loft. Is there anyone you’re hoping to have more scenes with?
Santiago Cabrera: I think that’s the fun thing. I’d love to work with everyone and at the moment, it’s just been a few characters and I’ve already started to find myself with a couple more. I wouldn’t say I have any preferences. I’d just be happy to interact with everyone. I think that’s the cool thing about my character. With the prophetic nature of his drawings makes him a kind of nucleus where he’ll make stories come together.
CraveOnline: Do people recognize you on the street?
Santiago Cabrera: Yeah, I’m getting recognized now suddenly because I’m cleaned up. Before, I don’t think people could tell it was me because of the bags and the pale and the greasy hair and stuff.