+ Interviews +
... Brittany Daniel
THE GAINESVILLE SUN Wednesday, September 8, 1999
STAR on the RISE: Gainesville native Brittany Daniel debuts on 'Dawson's Creek' Sept. 29 By BILL DeYOUNG Sun entertainment editor
Of her "Dawson's Creek" character, Brittany Daniel says: "She definitely has a sordid past. But she's a very, very fun character to play. I'm having the best time with it. Because on 'Sweet Valley High,' I played the snobby girl . . . and this character has so many different layers." FRED MORRIS/The WB
When "Dawson's Creek" begins its third season on The WB Sept. 29, fans of the high school drama will immediately notice a new cast member. Tall, blue-eyed and blonde, Gainesville's Brittany Daniel is hard to miss. Daniel, 23, joins "Dawson's Creek" as Eve, a young woman who meets Dawson Leery on a bus. She enrolls at Capeside High and becomes an on-again, off-again fixture in his life. "She's very cerebral and very mysterious," says Daniel, who has signed as a "possible series regular" for the 1999-2000 season and beyond. "She's definitely a very sexy character; she's really free and open with her body. But she's not just this temptress that moves into town: There's definitely this mystery about her." Daniel says Eve's goal is to rid Dawson of his virginity. "She's on the hunt," says the actress. "But there's more to her, which you'll find through the next few episodes." Daniel, whose father is C.B. Daniel, a member of the state university system's Board of Regents, was born and raised in Gainesville, and graduated from Gainesville High School in 1994. She and her identical twin sister Cynthia began modeling at age 11; they spent four years as the stars of the syndicated TV series "Sweet Valley High." The Daniel twins also had small but memorable parts opposite Leonardo DiCaprio in the 1994 film "The Basketball Diaries." With "Dawson's Creek," Brittany is going it alone. "In this business, you get stereotyped so fast," she says. "We just decided it was almost a dead end. My sister approached me and said 'You know, I think I want to take a little bit of a break from acting.' " Cynthia - who lives with her sister in Los Angeles - now prefers to concentrate on commercial work (she can currently be seen in spots for MCI, Bioré and the New York Stock Exchange). "We get offered twin things here and there, but we just decided it was best for our careers to split up," Brittany explains. "She's booked six commercials in the last year. She makes more money than I do!" For her major solo debut, Brittany made the rounds of L.A. auditions. "During pilot season, I was testing for a bunch of different shows," she explains. "And I was so close to so many different projects. It's so frustrating. But even with those, there's no guarantee. So many of the ones that I almost got didn't even make it. "But I had this strong feeling. I sometimes feel like I might be a little psychic, in the sense that I just had such a strong feeling that something was going to happen in the middle of August, when they bring on new characters to different shows. I felt like that was my ticket, to get on a hit show. To slide right in." "Dawson's Creek," which was created by "Scream" screenwriter Kevin Williamson (who serves as the series' executive producer) is filmed in Wilmington, N.C., where Daniel spent most of the summer. Away from the business. Away from the industry buzz about the hot new talent on "Dawson's Creek." "This business is so unpredictable and so unstable, you can't ever think 'this is it,' ever," Daniel says. "But it is surreal; I don't actually believe I'm on this show. "I've just been trained in this business not to get excited about anything, because it's constant letdown. If you get your ego involved in it, and you think you're going to be a big superstar, the next day someone tells you you're the worst actress in the world." If Eve's storyline fails to get the fans worked up, maybe the producers will bring Brittany's sister on the show. Cynthia has visited the Wilmington set a few times, and an "evil twin" scenario has been suggested - in jest. "I was like 'Don't even think about it,' " Daniel laughs. "Because that would make it so 'Melrose Place.' "