Elisabeth Harnois was born in Detroit in 1979 and grew up
in Los Angeles. She started acting at the age of three. When
she was five she co-starred in the movies One Magic Christmas
and Where Are the Children? In 1991 she starred
as Alice in Disney's Adventures in Wonderland series.
She received critical acclaim in 2000 for her portrayal of
the mentally unstable Kate in Carl Colpaert's Facade.
She's also guest starred in Charmed, The Fresh
Prince of Bel-Air and Highway to Heaven.
Sci-fi-online.com caught up with her as Point
Pleasant: The Complete Series,
was due for release on DVD...
Can you fill us in a little on what the story is behind Point
Harnois: Point Pleasant is about a small town in New
Jersey and how it is transformed by the random arrival of
a young girl on the Jersey Shore. She's rescued by the local
lifeguard who's the town good boy that everybody loves. And
she decides to stay in town to find her mother because her
mother is, coincidentally, from New Jersey.
We don't know exactly how she arrived in the water. But she
decides to stay in the town to find her mother, and it becomes
clear that her presence in the town is creating a change in
the energy. And, at the same time, she's discovering that
she has the ability to do things that other teenagers can't
this is very much linked to the way that people treat her.
If she's upset, a person can get hurt. And through this self-discovery
she learns that she is the daughter of Satan. And, of course,
she's keeping this a secret from the entire town. Meanwhile,
Grant Show comes in as a character who is the Devil's henchman,
if you will. He is there to watch over Christina and make
sure that she wrecks havoc on this town because this is supposed
to be where it's all going to happen.
is supposed to take over, starting in Point Pleasant. And
so that's why she's there. It becomes more and more clear
as we go on, how she's going to fight this inner anger and
this inner evil, but ultimately, she's the daughter of a good
person and the daughter of a bad person. And it literalises
the idea of the inner battle of good and evil.
Can you give us some more detail about what happens to the
town when your character arrives? You mentioned some changes...
You know, it's not an atypical thing to sort of explore, what
lurks underneath the surface of that completely beautiful
artifice, that beautiful perfect suburban town. I don't think
that when I arrive in town and things change, as I said, I
don't think it's anything that wasn't already in these people.
wouldn't normally act upon it but it's within them. They've
thought about it. I think that that's what happens when she
gets there, anything that they've ever thought about doing,
anything that's tempted them becomes easier to explore. And
that's the best way I can say it, without giving anything
too much away.
Would you say that Christina almost acts like a sort of catalyst?
She's a catalyst for bringing up the dangerous parts of people
and the subversive sides of their personalities. If anything
she's the most consistent of them all. I think she goes into
moments where she feels very strong anger or remorse or whatever.
She has very strong feelings and you get that. But it terms
of her turning on and off, like what you will eventually see
later in the season in people is actually almost a Jekyll
and Hyde sort of thing.
I think that she's the consistent person that tries to keep
everything a little bit balanced, ironically, even though
she's the one causing the change.
Christina herself is pretty kind of screwed up, though, wouldn't
Yeah, yeah. She doesn't know necessarily what the best thing
to do is at every moment. I think if this happened to me,
and when I was a teenager, I think that everyone would be
dead, you know? [Laughs]. Everyone
would have exploded [Laughs].
gets angry because the boy that she has a crush on doesn't
tell her initially that he has a girlfriend, and then the
girlfriend introduces herself and she's very mean to her.
And then in the next scene, they almost die. It's not like
she zaps people, but there's this direct linkage between her
anger and terrible things that happen.
Do you prefer playing darker roles? Do you find them more
I definitely find there's more to do with them [laughs]. I
think the projects I've done recently have had this underlying
either dark humour or just dark themes. I grew up doing a
lot of children's television and a lot of very happy things,
and I like the subject matter that allows me to explore my
own inner demons.
There's some pretty mighty themes that are being played with,
I mean, the coming of age theme. And the Spider-Man
theme of great power and great responsibility...
Absolutely. Oh, yeah, it's definitely comic. It's got the
antihero/superhero theme going on, which I love. I love the
idea that I'm an antihero and yet somehow have these supernatural-superhero
abilities. It's cool.
There's also a lot of iconic imagery used...
Yeah. The eye, the 666. There's a lot of religious imagery
as well. I think that they are using iconography to pit good
and evil against each other. And what most people identify
with good and evil [laughs. These are icons that we can relate
with these general ideas. But I'm sure we might get into some
trouble for that.
if anything, we're very respectful of all of that iconography
and when we use religious imagery it's normally as a representation
of the good. It's not anything sacrilegious and that's where
it's tricky because the 666 is, that's the sacrilegious side
of it all. I mean, if you're gonna say sacrilegious or good
What do you think about the show will appeal to audiences
in the UK?
I wish I understood the UK audience [laugh] I don't understand
the American audience. No, I think it'll be similar things
that make it appealing to them. I think that you have this
fun, sexy, romantic debaucherous behaviour, and you have teenagers
dealing with problems that teenagers deal with. You have adults
dealing with problems that adults deal with. The great thing
about storytelling is that when you're dealing with supernatural
themes, you can take these real problems and bring them to
a whole other level.
really have fun with them, you know? I mean like, the idea
of exploding something when you're really angry. Everyone
knows they've thought about hurting someone when they've really
hurt. No one acts upon that, but that's the fun thing about
this show, we can deal with these ideas and these themes on
a whole other level.
And I think that people will live vicariously through me in
a way, and I think that'll be appealing. And then they'll
feel bad later [laughs]. It'll deal with guilt [laughs].
You were talking about having done children's shows in the
past... Point Pleasant is pretty racy...
Some of it's pretty racy, definitely pretty racy. I think,
my mom'll be a little bit nervous, but [laughs] I'm grown
up, you know? It's time to, to deal with some subject matter
that I relate to, [laughs] that I've dealt with. And, it's
nice to feel like I've been able to make that change in the
work that I do. You need to move forward, and I think this
is definitely moving forward - even if it's racy.
What's that been like to film?
What's the racy stuff been like to film? Well, it's never,
[laughs] it's never something you're like, all right, let's
go do this, you know? You definitely discuss it and it's choreographed
and there's a respect for space and, fortunately the people
I'm working with are all very sane, intelligent and respectful
people. Especially the person that I have to have a lot of
the intimate scenes with.
good friends, so it's fine. It's good and depending upon the
director we normally work it out very well, specifically what
we're gonna do, and it's been good [laughs].
The character, Boyd, what could Christina's relationship be
like with him?
I think it's gonna be really complicated. I think that she
knows that he's a force to be reckoned with. He's someone
she's going to have to keep an eye on. It's one more problem
that she has to deal with 'cause she knows that not only does
she have herself to battle, she has to battle this person
who's trying to bring out the worst in her at every given
moment. And she knows that she may have the potential to control
him because she's the daughter of Satan.
just working for him. She's got to figure out how to wield
her power in a way to control him. She lets him know that
she's not gonna take any of his crap, if you will.
It's a very cinematic piece as well, where do you think it
really kicks off? At what point do you really think people
are gonna get locked into this show?
I hope from the moment it starts, but I know that there's
usually a point in the narrative where you really latch on
to your characters and you feel a bit of alignment with them
or, you have a sort of a bond with them. And I think that'll
happen with each of the characters at different moments.
terms of the narrative as a whole and the piece as a whole,
I think it happens once Christina, my character, realises
that she has affected some change and that she may have possibly
caused some damage. And
she has to figure out what all of this means. And it all sort
of spirals into the reason why I stay. And the reason why
everyone's life gets a little bit more complicated. So I think
hopefully that's when people will latch on because that's
when they are suppose to [laughs].
Thank you for your time.
TM 2005 Twentieth Century Fox and its related entities. All
thanks to Sylvia Brendel at DSA
Pleasant is released to own and rent on DVD from 20th
Century Fox on the 23 January 2006
this DVD for £22.99 (RRP: £29.99) by clicking