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Maggie Q on Nikita

Published September 1, 2010 in Television
By Fred Topel | Image property of CW
We’ve gotten used to seeing Maggie Q kick ass. Whether part of the IMF team in Mission: Impossible III or the villain in Live Free or Die Hard or even in the comedy Balls of Fury, Maggie Q is one of the new action heroines. It makes sense for her to be the new Nikita on TV. The new show lets her play the glamorous side of a spy too.

Maggie Q on Nikita

“I've gotten to that point where I'm so used to being sort of sweaty and wearing pants and sitting like a guy in boots and the whole thing that when I'm dressed up and people are touching me up and doing the whole thing, I'm less comfortable doing that,” Q said. “I like to wear less makeup and be tougher. The primp stuff is exciting for people, but it's less exciting for me. I mean, it's definitely fun, but I kind of like low maintenance. I do. I enjoy it on set because really, it's about the characters. It's about the acting. It's about the story. So it's not really about blush.”

Nikita will be sure to exploit Maggie Q’s talents. She’s already getting to know her stunt coordinator. They’ll hopefully be together a long time. “He's very straightforward. He picks up very quickly on what our strengths and weaknesses are. And I'm very vocal also with him about what I like and what I don't like. So when Danny says it's a dance, it really is. It's like he's my partner. We go through this sort of dance, and I say, ‘You're stepping on my toes a little bit. This is what I need from you.’ And he's like, ‘Okay. Well, this works better for me. What do you think about this?’ No one's good at everything, so you kind of have to play up your strengths and play to that. So he does design based on what it is that looks better, because everybody looks different when they fight. So some people are more flexible than others. There is a level of trust because there it's a big safety issue too. So you kind of have to have a close relationship, so I make sure that I'm nice to him.”

Nikita Nikita

Following a summer of Salt, Q has high hopes for the state of women in action. “I think that's a perfect example because it's a recent example. I remember seeing promotions for Salt and getting really excited and hoping that will do really well. It's just good for females right now in the industry, for them to be able to headline things and carry something that traditionally men carry. What I like that's happening right now in films in the action genre, which didn't happen before, was they're using incredibly credible actors now in these big action roles. You see Angelina Jolie in a movie like Salt, and she's very believable, but not because she's super tough or has more muscles than the next girl. She's an incredible actress, and that toughness comes from a place that's very internal, which is the reason why she's so good at what she does. So that's a great example of a really quality actress in a role where she's doing both. And you kind of have to be. You can't be kind of talented and know how to fight because then that would mean every martial artist in the world could star in movies and do that. That's not what it's about. It's a combination of things. So yeah, I look at people like Angelina. Early when I was living in Hong Kong, I looked to Michelle Yeoh and people like this. I admired them because it was the combination of things that they brought to screen that really worked. Now that I'm in that position, I know how hard it is, my admiration has just been heightened.”

If you live in a big city, you may have already seen a lot of Maggie Q this summer. Billboards of her are up showing off a giant tattoo on the side of her upper thigh. “It's a phoenix. When I moved to Asia, it was tough. It was tough for me. It was a struggle to be a woman in the business. I was incredibly poor and inexperienced and all the things that you can be when you're insecure. I didn't go and see fortune tellers, but I had friends who did, and I would tag along because I thought it was so fascinating. They would always look at me at the end of the session and go, ‘You're a bird.’ They would always tell me that I was a bird. Always, and I didn't get it. And as I started getting older and learning more about myself, I got it. So I met an artist who basically said, ‘You understand what bird you represent?’ And I said no. He said, ‘You're a phoenix because you've come from nothing, and you're building something." I mean, I was certainly not there yet. I don't even think I'm there now. But I was on my way to building something that meant something to me, and so I wanted it to be the bird of strength.”

Nikita premieres September 9 on The CW.
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Fred Topel
Sources: Image property of CW

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