interview xena: warrior princess Taken from TV Zone #136

Renee O'Connor: Gabrielle's Hope

As six years of Xena come to a close, Renee O’Connor looks back on her life
with the warrior princess

Gabrielle & Xena: uncharted waters

See also this parallel issue: TV Zone Special, #40


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It seems hard to believe, but in a few weeks, filming will wrap on the final episode of Xena: Warrior Princess, one of the most successful adventure series in the history of syndicated television. But just how that episode ends is still very much up in the air. Will Xena (Lucy Lawless) ride off into the sunset with her long-time companion Gabrielle (Renee O’Connor) and live happily ever after, or will they both go out fighting for their beliefs, in one final blaze of glory?


Well, there’s isn’t much point in asking O’Connor, who claims that she still hasn’t been told how the series will reach its conclusion. “Everyone asks Lucy and I how the show will end,” she insists, “but we still don’t know. It’s very bittersweet at the moment, because there aren’t many episodes left; I think there are only five more to do.”

The Final Hurdle

Renee O'Connor: the Season 6 lookThe actress is speaking from Auckland where the cast and crew of Xena are heading into their final block of filming. “Right now, we’re working on an episode that deals with the extermination of the centaurs. We reintroduce Ephiny’s character and meet her son as a grown man. And then we’re going to film a wonderful episode called When Fates Collide, which takes us out of our reality and explains what could happen if one person’s destiny was changed and how that would affect everyone else. I think that one is really interesting and quite well written. So we have those two coming up, and then we go into the musical and the last two episodes, which Rob [Tapert, the show’s executive producer and real-life husband of Lucy Lawless] is directing.

“Those two are actually one story, and I’m so excited that Rob is directing again. I think it was Year Four when he was last behind the camera, and for this to be his baby and to be ending is going to be profoundly sad, but it’s going to be a wonderful experience for us all to be together in the end like that. It must be a bit of a relief to know that he doesn’t have to prepare five more stories after he finishes directing, so that might ease the burden a bit.”

Joe Nazzaro


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Renee O'Connor talks more about Xena's Gabrielle, becoming a director, and thinking about life post-Xena in this seven-page feature in TV Zone #136

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