By James Joyce
August 3, 2004
The Newcastle Herald
RHIANNA Griffith reckons watching a computer-generated version of herself blast alien butt in the science-fiction film Dark Fury is an out-of-body experience.
"I can kind of recognise myself but it's weird, that's for sure," the actress said yesterday.
The 19-year-old from Mulbring, who appeared opposite hunky Hollywood action man Vin Diesel in the hit 2000 sci-fi creature feature Pitch Black, reteams with the muscle-bound star in Dark Fury, a striking Japanese-style anime that continues the Pitch Black story.
Diesel and Griffith lend their voices to the film, which features animated versions of their respective characters, intergalactic fugitive killer Riddick and his feisty young stowaway sidekick tomboy, Jack.
Released on DVD last week ahead of Thursday's opening of Pitch Black sequel The Chronicles of Riddick, the 35-minute animation was produced as a bridging episode between the two live-action feature films.
It was directed by animator Peter Chung, who created the acclaimed Animatrix animated spin-off to the blockbuster Matrix films.
Griffith said reprising the character of Jack in Dark Fury was some compensation for missing out on the chance to continue the role in the flesh in The Chronicles of Riddick.
French-born American model-turned-actor Alexa Davalos takes over the part in the special effects space adventure, a casting switch that had swarms of diehard Pitch Black fans logging onto sci-fi chatrooms everywhere to sound off at Hollywood studio Universal and writer-director David Twohy.
"Having played her in the first film, and it was my first big role and I was so passionate about the character, then to go to the US to audition for the sequel but then miss out it was hard to handle," Griffith said.
"But that's the business and you've got to try not to take it personally. It's been nice to have the support of fans on the net because they can get upset about it for me."
For Dark Fury, Chung based his animated version of Jack on Griffith's scenes in Pitch Black, which was shot in Coober Pedy and Warner Bros studios on the Gold Coast in 1998.
"I had no visuals to go on, it was just me with the script in a sound studio in Sydney, putting on my 13-year-old girl voice," Griffith said of her vocal contribution.
Factual error: Rhiana's name is not spelled "Rhianna."