If you were asked to pull together an ensemble of the most kick-ass actresses in Hollywood, who would be on your shortlist? For us, Zoe Bell would definitely make that cut. Sure, she's not as famous as Sigourney Weaver, Linda Hamilton or Uma Thurman, but as a stuntwoman turned leading lady, she has a clear edge over her competition as we see it. Thankfully, Millennium Films seems to agree, and has reached out to Bell about their in-development Expendables spin-off, The ExpendaBelles.
Speaking with Bell about her upcoming actioner Raze, Crave Online asked about The ExpendaBelles project. She responded:
"I have not yet [been offered] but we should print that they should. I’ve been in and I’ve met. Yes, I’ve had meetings with people but they haven’t got a director attached yet so that’s the next thing. I would obviously love to be involved in it…They’ve got Expendables and then The ExpendaBelles which is a cute little play on words there. So it’s the ExpendaBelles gang that I have been and met with. Listen, I’d take either."
The ExpendaBelles has been a project Bell has publicly shown interest in on her Twitter page, encouraging fans who demanded she be considered for the project for which she seems a natural fit. Bell's been growing a reputation rare for a stuntwoman. Her career began as a double for Lucy Lawless on Xena: Warrior Princess, but when the show wrapped, Bell traveled from her homeland of New Zealand to Hollywood in hopes of making it big in stunts. What's remarkable is this time of her career was captured in a fascinating documentary called Double Dare, which concludes with her meeting and impressing the hell out of Quentin Tarantino as he searched for Thurman's stunt double on Kill Bill.
Since then, Bell and Tarantino have been recurring collaborators. She's worked on Inglorious Basterds, Django Unchained and most notably, she had a lead role in his Grindhouse contribution Death Proof, where she rode on the hood of a speeding muscle car. The last film showed the clear advantage of having a stunt woman take on a lead role, allowing for camera shots and coverage that wouldn't be possible if doubles were brought in. For a better understanding of Bell's stunt skills, check out this reel:
Bell isn't the biggest name being tossed around The Expendables spin-off. (Meryl Streep, Milla Jovovich, and Cameron Diaz have also been mentioned.) But she's one I'm personally the most stoked about. But can she act, you might wonder? To answer that question, watch Death Proof or check out her upcoming Raze. But keep in mind, The Expendables movies ask most of its stars to do little more than act tough and deliver cutting one-liners. I'm confident Bell, even in her limited acting experience, can handle that. For now it seems like no talent will be confirmed until a director is in place. We'll keep you up to date on ExpendaBelles' development. In the meantime, look for Raze in theaters on January 10th.