Brea Grant is an American actress and writer who is best known for playing Daphne Millbrook in the NBC television series “Heroes”. She was born in Marshall, Texas, and holds Bachelor’s and Master’s degrees from The University of Texas at Austin. Her acting career includes credits in an episode of “Cold Case”, three episodes of “Friday Night Lights”, Junkie Girl in “Max Payne”, and as Rasha in SciFi’s “Battle Planet”.
Brea has also seen success in the world of comics. She created a comic book miniseries called We Will Bury You with her brother Zane Grant and artist Kyle Strahm. She continued her comic writing with the SuicideGirls comic miniseries, based on the pin-up Web site of the same name.
I had the sincere pleasure to speak with Brea in July 2011, where we covered a few of her projects and then explored some personal information you might not know!
GS: Just to start out, let me be upfront. I never saw the show “Heroes”. What did I miss?
BG: (laughs) Um, a few things, you know. I think you better catch up pretty soon.
GS: Well, what did I miss with your character?
BG: I was the super-fast… they called me the Speedster. I stole a lot of stuff. Then I got another character in trouble, there was a romantic part, then I died. I got shot. There you go.
GS: Not a happy ending.
BG: No, no. Not for me.
GS: Let’s talk “Halloween 2” (2009) — Rob Zombie is a different sort of director to work with.
BG: Yeah, he’s cool. He’s actually a really normal guy. I wish I had some crazy story about him. He loves his actors, he loves improvisation. He’s very hands-on. We showed up one morning and he had redecorated the entire set with spray-painted words. He thought it needed more, and he did it all himself. Which is really a testament to him as a director.
GS: I’ve met Rob a couple times, and I know what you mean about him being normal. He actually came across as being almost shy.
BG: It’s so weird. His band got big when I was a teenager, so I was really into pop culture. It was sort of nerve-wracking meeting him, because I thought he’d be so different. He is a rock star and he is a bit offbeat, but he’s also a really good director and he knows what he’s doing.
GS: The word on the street is that Danielle Harris’ upcoming directorial debut is called “Among Friends” and you might be taking part in that…
BG: Yeah. Rumor confirmed. I’m gonna do a cameo, I think, in Among Friends. We ran into each other a while ago and I was sort of gushing about how cool it was that she was going to direct a movie. And I told her I would do anything I could to help out — hold a boom pole or anything. And she was like, “Come be in it.” And I said, “Oh, I would love to be in it. That would be way better.”
GS: You haven’t seen a script, have you?
BG: I have not, no. I do know what I’m doing but I am not going to reveal it.
GS: I think the big news right now, and correct me if I’m wrong, is “Dexter” Season 6.
BG: Yeah, that is the news. I’m going to be on the first part of the season as a new lab intern.
GS: Is this just the first four episodes, or will it be ongoing?
BG: That remains to be determined.
GS: You are probably not the person to ask, but a lot of critics are saying that “Dexter” jumped the shark and is going downhill. Do you care to defend the show?
BG: I’m a fan of the show, so I disagree. I think it’s still very relevant, very interesting and the actors are brilliant. I think this season is going to surprise a lot of people, because we’re going back to more the feel of the first season, with a bad guy in each episode. It’s about Dexter doing that in each episode, and I think people like that more. I know I do.
GS: I think you worked with one of my heroes… Jeremy London.
BG: (long pause) … I did work with Jeremy London.
GS: You don’t remember?
BG: It was so long ago. How did you know that? Yeah, I met him for a brief, brief moment for a movie called “Trance”. We had half of a scene together. It was one of my early movies and I went to Louisiana for three weeks to shoot it. I have never seen the movie, the movie never saw the light of day — it got lost in the world of post-production. He was really nice, or at least nice to me when I met him. Why is he your hero?
GS: Well, he’s one of my heroes. The honest reason is that I’m a huge fan of “Mallrats”, which probably reflects poorly on me.
BG: Mallrats is a great movie.
GS: I read somewhere that you’re a big fan of Howard Zinn and “A People’s History of the United States”.
BG: Sure. I was a history major, I have a master’s degree in history. I didn’t start out that way — I was actually a math major, amazingly enough. Someone handed me “A People’s History” and it essentially changed my worldview. It takes history from the point of view of those who didn’t necessarily win. The whole idea of history is that it is written by those who won the wars. The winners write history. So he goes through and critiques textbooks. There’s discussion of how social movements affected history. Anarchists, women’s rights, and all sorts of things that I had an interest in but never thought much about. And it was such an easily available book. He’s sort of my hero in that way. He’s the only “celebrity” who when they died, I cried. It’s just an amazing book.
GS: That is so much better a response than I was looking for.
BG: Yeah, I’m very passionate about it. I’m passionate about knowledge. We live in this crazy culture where we get news updates on our iPhones, but never stop to think about the impact. And I was just reading about the budget — it’s making me crazy!! I’m so angry! I’m embarrassed! [Gavin notes: At the time of this interview, the Democrats and Republicans were working on a way to avoid the country going into default.]
GS: I was told you appeared in a Planned Parenthood ad?
BG: Oh my god. I did. There’s a weird story. I moved to LA, I was looking for work and waiting tables. There was a call for people to appear in Planned Parenthood ads. I booked it, and I got paid $200 total. (laughs) And they still use it today. So sometimes I think I should call them up and be like, “Guys, you paid me $200 and you are still using it…” I no longer have the contract, though. I thought they were going to use one photo for one thing — a specific campaign. But once I was on TV, I started seeing it everywhere. I think they pulled it up and started using it. But, Planned Parenthood does provide great free access to women’s health care, some of which I used when I moved to LA. It was funny because I’d be in the office and see myself. But it helps a lot with gynecological expenses…
GS: We might not need to go too much further into that.
BG: Planned Parenthood gives out free birth control and all sorts of things. They’re a great company. So sometimes when I see it, I’m shaking my fist. But they did enough for me, so I guess they can use my face.
GS: The question from the reader was, do you ever get any flak about it?
BG: No. You’re the first person to ever bring it up to me, besides my friends texting me saying, “You’re staring at me right now.” I’ve never got any flak for it, and if I did, I would stand by it. Because they did do so much for me… and everyone I know.
GS: Alright, I have to preface this final question. I think the question is really retarded, but a reader wanted me to ask the guy who plays the Highlander. The Highlander, rightfully so, refused to answer it. So now the reader wants me to ask you.
GS: Tell me what your fiscal policy would be in an alternate future where the only accepted global currency is Chex Mix.
BG: (laughs) What!?!? (laughs)
GS: Put simply, I guess, how do you manage money when your money is Chex Mix?
BG: The biggest problem with Chex Mix is that you can make more of it. Though, I guess you can also make more money. But with Chex Mix, you can also eat it. You’re going to have a problem if you’re eating your money. It’s like when you play poker, but you use candy and you end up eating it and have less money. I feel that would be your main, core issue.
GS: So your points are that since they can make more, inflation is an issue. And because it’s edible, it’s just not a very good currency for saving.
BG: Those are my lame answers, yes.
GS: They’re not lame. At least they’re answers and the guy will stop asking the question.
BG: (laughs) Well, I’m glad to help.
GS: Thank you so much for your time today.
BG: No, thank you. Thanks for having me.