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Kristen Bell Is Superheroically Awesome

Ever since I first heard that Kristen Bell was going to be on Heroes this season, I've been anxiously awaiting more details. Well, yesterday I got the awesome opportunity to chat with Bell on the phone and learn all sorts of things about the funny, gracious lady and her superhero role.

She spilled some beans (but not all of them) about her character, Elle, and she revealed her feelings about certain other cast members. She also chose a superpower she'd want to have if she could obtain any of them. Oh, and apparently she loves America's Funniest Home Videos.

To see what I found out from my call with Kristen Bell, and to check out a scene from the upcoming episode of Heroes in which she makes her first appearance,

On joining the show:
Apparently, Bell was a huge fan of Heroes from the very start, and would discuss the show feverishly every week with her Veronica Mars co-workers.

On her relationships with the cast:
Bell previously knew both Hayden Panettiere and Zachary Quinto before joining the cast of Heroes. She and Hayden met in New York when Hayden was just eight years old, as the two had the same agent. She says even then Hayden was "a lovely little girl. And even then you could tell that there was something so alarmingly special about who she was and what she was going to be able to accomplish as a performer. I've sort of kept up a relationship with her just socially. And having joined the cast now it’s been really nice because I think really good girlfriends are so rare to find in LA, and she’s a really cool honest girl."

Bell went on to say that she and Hayden always joked about playing sisters or friends on a show, but then hinted that their characters on Heroes may not exactly be friendly with each other.

On Bell's character, Elle:

  • Bell says Elle's power is "very cool," and that she's not like the other heroes that hate or resent their powers. "She very much enjoys her power and enjoys the emotional power it gives her over other people."
  • Elle was raised within the Company! One of the things Tim Kring pointed out about Elle was that hers is "in some ways a cautionary tale of what would happen to any of our characters had they lived with their powers their whole life the way Elle had." As Bell puts it, "It's because she was raised by the company and not by a normal family that you’ll sympathize with her. I certainly hope you’ll sympathize with her in trying to understand how her childhood really messed her up."
  • "She has ties to HRG and to Claire. And there’s going to be a very interesting dynamic I think, between her and Claire... I think there’s going to be a deeper relationship there than people are expecting. They’re going to see...maybe some parallels. But she also has ties to Suresh. And she’s a little messed up in the head which makes her really manipulative and always out to get what she wants. She doesn’t have many boundaries."
  • Bell thinks viewers will love to hate Elle at first, when they're "confused about her intentions," but she hopes we will ultimately sympathize with her.
  • We'll see Elle in Episode Five and then not again until Episode Eight. She is signed on for 13 episodes, after which they'll discuss the possibility of more.

On which Heroes person she'd most like to interact with:
"I would like to most interact with — and this is for two different reasons, for on- and off-camera reasons — with Zachary Quinto. Because Zachary Quinto has been a good friend of mine for almost ten years now. I've always wanted to work with him and besides the fact that he’s pretty much the coolest thing because he’s so unpredictable and so downright evil. And it’s almost hard for me to watch because it’s the polar opposite of Zach’s personality because he’s just the kindest, gentlest, most giving person. I would love to see him and Elle face off one day. I think that that would be unbelievable."

On her superpower of choice:
If she could choose one, Bell would have the power of multiplicity. "I think it would be great to be able to multiply myself and cook myself dinner. I’d just be like 'Hey, clean that up,' you know? I’d be so much more happier."

On why she was drawn to the role on Heroes:
Bell compares Tim Kring and Rob Thomas' abilities to tell stories that have hooks that "sink into people," and says both Heroes and Veronica Mars are "really smart shows and they’re a little harder to follow which I really respect. Because when you treat the audience like an intelligent member, you tend to attract intelligent viewers."

On her voiceover gig for Gossip Girl:
"Gossip Girl's been great. And it’s sort of an easy deal for me because it’s not on-camera. And I’ve always dreamt about having a job where I could go and show up in my jammies."
She said jammies!

On her "geeky guilty pleasure":
"I'm always kind of into reruns of America's Funniest Home Videos. That’s my geekiest, guilty pleasure. And I don’t feel guilty about it because it’s an awesome show."

Here's a clip of K. Bell on Heroes:

Photo courtesy of NBC

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