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Raven De La Croix

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Raven De La Croix

Raven De La Croix is an American actress, known for her lead role in the 1976 Russ Meyer film "Up!." While she recently appeared in William Winckler's "The Double-D Avenger" (a campy spoof of "Wonder Woman" about a costumed superwoman who uses her extremely large breasts to fight crime), she kindly agreed to grant us an interview.

Interview conducted by Labroche in December 2002.

What has been your reaction when William Winckler presented you the "Double-D Avenger" project?

I am periodically asked to be involved in various creative activities, and feel grateful to represent an energy that people like to have around in their projects. I learned in life that "one cannot take every boat that passes and waves to you" and I learned that 'personal interest' in anything you undertake is 'senior' to remuneration. In other words, "Follow your dream or excitement above all else!". So I turn down a lot but take up with what seems fun and productive. So many cool things ... so little time! I had people try and sway me from the DD project because it was a 'gamble' and the budget held no financial promise and so on ... but because of the way I felt about Bill & Dezzi and the script ... I went ahead and lent myself to the film. It proved my instinct was correct.

The second film promises to be funnier than the first! Now I have two parts to play and it will be fun!

I met Bill Winckler and liked him right off. Great person. Honest and straight forward. Funny and sweet.

His bride Dezzi, a perfect compliment to each other. We were graced to be at their wedding and it was very beautiful and heartfelt. She is an amazing performer herself. A star singer (opera as well as any style) in her country or anywhere when you hear her voice! She doubles and triples in skills in "The Double D Avenger" as well as Bill Winckler himself. I read the script and I just happened to have been 'found' by Bill in time to meet the cast in a "read through" rehearsal. The people were sweet and the characters funny. "Al Purplewood" was fabulous and "Pirate Jugs" was excellent and funny. All the characters were full blown and ready to roll!

I LOVE comic books anyway and this to me was definitely one! So, Dr. De La Croix I became {giggle}!

It seems you’ve had a lot of fun playing your part, did you enjoy acting in this movie?

YES! I only wished I could've giggled my way through the whole thing but Bill found me late in the casting. He originally wrote the part for a Groucho Marx gay male and didn't change it for me. I wrestled with it at first and then sort of 'fitted the skin of this character over me' and it all came out wacky and I had fun doing it. It seemed that the lines were aimed at 'side speaking' to Russ himself ... which I thought to be an interesting synchronicity as Russ had a habit of immortalizing certain things within the script and within the story. Especially when Russ was 'ticked off' at a person ... he would lay in dialogue to insult you ... and certainly did this in "UP!" in my case.

He had issues with my spirituality. Other people found it sensual in a natural sense. Kitten was more his cup of tea, as she found it fun to unleash her breasts in her mashed potatoes at a family Thanksgiving dinner regardless of who was at the table.

Where in Winckler's case ... he had me ... De La Croix ... calling in all Russ Meyer’s prior lavish leading ladies by name and side commenting to Kitten (as both of us have taken care of him during the latter stages of his life ... her more so than I) about "killing two birds with one stone" and "getting the coffin down those stairs". As cold as it seems ... it is not intended the way it can seem on the surface. It is rather the hidden story of what he is going through by no fault of Kitten or I but by the one who 'took over' his fortune and keeps us all away from ever seeing Russ alive again. THAT is a story.

What is your best remembrance of your Meyer's period? Does acting in "The Double-D Avenger" reminds you of this?

Well, first I was discovered in a restaurant by Samantha Monsieur, who was casting for the famous Eddie Foy Casting for 20th Century Fox. At the time I was a Record Promoter under Steve Topley for LAX &Far Out Productions home of WAR; Jimmy Witherspoon; Ronnie Laws; Eloise Laws; Tanya Tucker; Lee Oscar; Lonny Jordan, Aalon, etc. I had never heard of Russ Meyer but Steve Gold &Jerry Goldstein of Far Out Productions (manager & producer of WAR etc) LOVED his work and told me it was a comic book and that I should take it.

I went to meet with Russ at his Hollywood Blvd office (at the time) and later found out how extraordinary it was for Russ NOT to have asked to see my body before filming. Not being an exhibitionist ... it was normal for me that he didn't as I wasn't aware of his style of films. I had never viewed even one of any of his other films until three years ago when I saw "Faster Pussycat Kill Kill!" ... at an Awards Convention with Forrie Ackerman &William Shatner amongst other film greats. (That classic film ... more popular today than ever ... is where I learned the beginnings of what later turned out to be my accurate perception of Russ's psyche in his film making paralleling his own personal concepts about women, romance and 'how it was for him or men he knew (of)' in full cartoon clarity ... guts and all!) So any one who knew Russ found the factor of no "visuals" before filming ... almost unbelievable. YEARS later he told me he didn't ask because after interviewing over 400 women for the part ... and he liked me ... he figured if he came up against something un-photographable he would work around it but mainly he said he knew I was 'pure material' for film and didn't want to blow it by possibly scaring me away by 'checking the goods'. So he trusted his instincts and according to him ... he proved 'right'.

Bottom line ... Russ's Psyche underlines his films differently women are dangerous, not to be trusted, they take you and leave you dead or alive ... or the women are brutalized and rise above and victims are left ...

The Double D Avenger is nothing like working with Russ. It's a whole different ball game and Bill is a lot more flexible and allows the artist to be themselves and doesn't have a "scripted agenda with his players psyche" for revenge {Giggle}. Bottom line ... Bill underlines the silly part of the American psyche in regards to sex and women in spoof ... more of a Benny Hill American style, instead of a bloody horror and dead naked folk. These parts are more like a comic book/soap where the character is eliminated but without the visuals of gorish deaths.

"Up!" seems to have been a very hard work for you, Russ Meyer being quite "tyrannical". Would you do it again?

Being oldest of eight children from Bronx New York ... I was used to hard work and being of athletic interests ... I enjoyed the action and the stunts and the invaluable learning of film making from many different perspectives. This proved priceless in later years with other projects with my ability to apply what I learned all along. Russ WAS verrry tyrannical but I "got it" from the beginning and identified with his attachment to his army buddies and so would "salute" him after each scene with "What's the next shot, Chief?" and would get everything he asked for within one to three takes. (Meanwhile you know it all depends on the marriage of energies between all players and tech crew at the same time to get the shot. Not to mention Russ was a perfectionist with his own standards. Of course it is too late to ever work with Russ again this lifetime but if that weren't so ... I would have think about it because one of the original reasons I accepted his film in the first place (although my film turns out to be one that is popular amongst certain people rather than a wide appeal – and I can easily see why). I believe he compromised when it came to "UP".

He diverted from his earlier voyeurism genre of capturing a glimpse of a female beauty unawares (Immoral Mr. Tee's) and women who wouldn't be victims (erotic action film) but perpetrators instead. (which mixed up the minds of feminists).

I think he listened to a few 'secret friends' when it came to scripts and argued miserably with the feminists and tried to provide images to please the arenas that were demanding some.

Like the 'hard core' industry was slamming him for being so 'tame' and the feminists were slamming him for the 'naked women' and the "main stream' was shocked at anything he did ... so in a world where he had to be strongest holding his OWN art ... he compromised and never recovered.

Unfortunate because it was obvious in his earlier films that he crossed a barrier and opened a new arena for this kind of Art which showed itself in Benny Hills genius and certain other cult films, including the present time Bill Winckler. If it were the original RM formula made today ... with all us gals together? Sure!

But realistically ... we have a few great comedy movie makers and Bill Winckler is certainly exploring a much needed genre for fun and relief and is busily 'shipping product on demand' in places around the world! He is here to put the "grins" back on our faces in fun of ourselves in a healthy way. The "Hahahhaha" is back with spoofy sexy sillies! Ya hoo! Like the male spoof of "The Vagina Monologues".

"Up!" and "The Lost Empire" being two cult movies, was it difficult to work (and live) after having played in such major pieces?

"UP!" &"Lost Empire" are two comic book cult movies and there are a few more but currently they are the two most popular so far.

Add to it "Six Days in Roswell" &"The Elastic Zenith" ...

In Hollywood it seems every one is in the business and what determines your longevity in the long run is how open your heart is and how lovely you treat the people and how much gratitude you have for your successes and talent. Here it is up to the individual how they 'react' or 'respond' to the people. I find most people are needy themselves ... even the actors and known Celebrities ... when they "emanate" instead of "suck" ...

it is a glorious thing because it's like taking a few fish or loaves of bread and astoundingly find there is enough for all to enjoy and be nourished. "Fame" is in ones head ... for Kennedy Jr. was a true celebrity who rolled up his sleeves with his fellow man ...

as did Princess Diana. I tend to flow with that style of famous hood. TO be WITH the people and with oneself simultaneously. It's a job that is a privilege, but it carries its foibles if one isn't well grounded. I find it difficult to find male producers and male film writers to understand woman enough to write challenging positive roles for women beyond the pure fantasy or stereo-type ... Oh yes ... they make the women strong and killers etc ... but not strong AS WOMEN with their true powers unfurling (very often ...)

I'd better start writing soon! {Giggle}

William Winckler is about to realize a sequel of "The Double-D Avenger", in which you will play the lead part. Can you tell us a little more about it?

I read the script and was howling ... (knowing now Bill's style) ... I have two lead parts in this one! And Mikee, my husband, plays my side-kick in my second lead. Kitten is doing another film and Haji moved to New York to do something and so are not included in the sequel.

For the first "PART" I continue to play the Double D Avenger's side kick of Doctorly info ... and the second character is an Elvira type who turns out to be Dr. De La Croix's evil half sister : ) And Mikee plays her side kick BORIS. Eddie of the Munsters, will be playing a Werewolf also! Funny Stuff!

It seems that The Double D Avenger is continuing to help fight crime in her city and this time a funny 70's type Royal pimp has a plot of extortion and has his four Ho's injected with a secret serum that upon $soliciting$ the men

changes targeted politicians into horny howler werewolves! They got the hairy serum from Gertrude (my evil counterpart) and Doc De La Croix has to come up with a remedy quick! The Double D is busy rounding up crooks in hilarious ways ... never a dull moment!

"I've had many careers, and each one has expressed a different part of me."...

Most people still see you as the main actress of Russ Meyer's "Up!", while you have literally lived several lives…. Which part of you would you like people to remember?

It is funny but since Russ Meyer's "UP!" I have been creative in various different realms and while there is a little of me in all of myselves {giggle} and I enjoyed the various stages ...

Raven De La Croix was the emergence of the woman men projected (as an A=A stereotype: tits = sex &spatial invasion by playing imaginary submarine with the penis-boat all over) on me ... through the underworld ... "me gathering the light".

Raven De Lumiere is the woman I became after I went through the underworld and emerged into "me streaming the light".

Ravenne Z is the "me" now ... the one who is the sum of all of myselves. The 'I AM" ... " me emanating ... streaming ... bearing the light".

The part of me that is and always was and always will be is the part where I never really grow up but I become a responsible child {Giggle}.

This way I get to eternally play and I'll never become a dried up adult. My body may age but not my heart. I am very much a romantic. Although it can never be entirely squelched ... I feel true romance in real life is greatly squashed by base hard core animal grunting sexploits that crush real sensitivity and pureness of heart and the passionate dance of fiery love and how to sustain the heat without burning out or up! My life giving thriving dreamscapes have been largely squashed by dried up adults who must see the profit before the divine fruit it bears which are naturally abundant ... a love parched society scraping for a part of themselves they will never find outside themselves yet they'll rip it from you if they think you 'have it' instead of letting it emerge from the self … tsh tsh ... a sad feasting of new born birth lings of ancient futures!

I believe out of all the emerging selves ... I am learning to appreciate the {now} me as I move into the Age of the Wisdom of Crone. It is a time where Woman/Man is all at once infant, child, teenager, young adult, middle aged and ageless &timeless ... flexibly ... according to the unfurlment of ones souls journey

What people should ... if I could direct their attention ... remember of me ??? You contain all of yourself within. Do not search outside yourself except for a reflection of who you are in any mirror. There are no accidents in creation ... only life and the right to create your dreams from an empty canvass no matter the challenge ... as this is the "desire realm" ... a place where "to dream" is part of the equation of how "to manifest" … just love yourselves ... that light will emanate outward as your personal beacon of dreams for the world ... the real flag of camaraderie!

"Own Your Life" ... "Know What You Know" ... &"Burn Bright" !!

Your website is divided into two different parts: Raven De La Croix, and Raven De Lumiere...Who is your favourite Raven, and why?

I love all of the me's now ... but I started out in a very painful (to me) emotional life till only years ago. What ever expectations I had 'coming in' to this realm ... I grieved when I was a child for many many years ... all the while laughing and moving forward ... exploring what was left after the disillusionment ... finding instead of shattered dreams ... a whole new playing field without strings!

I wished (while we're wishing) as many do ... that I could combine certain parts of myself to play my current part with many more attributes to fuel my journey to fan the light as far as I can ... reminding myself and all those in my vibrational sphere ... to awaken and be all of who you really are ... to take your true place in the Universe as we are on a journey as never was yet experienced by any world in any when.

We are creating something so new that the Universe is watching us here on this earth to see what we shall do with what we have set in motion. We're all here for this whether we 're-member' or not [right away]. These are troubled ... but significantly amazing times.

How exciting!

What kind of advice would Raven De Lumière give to young Raven De La Croix if they could meet today?

I would say ... don't try sooo hard ... Looove yourself ... Relaxxxx ... Your seed is so strong and so pure of heart that the Gods of Love and Light will assist in your bringing it in for a loving gift for the world and all who breathe it. I would say ... do not compromise. Strive toward your highest dreams no matter the ridicule ... those that relish in that reflection of 'fear' are angels in disguise (even against their will) as they reflect the 'thorned forest' and you must 'walk it' anyway ... and ... avoiding 'scratches' from the 'thorns' is best.

Remember ... the Universal Law of Attraction ... (what you 'put out' IS what you 'get back') ... The Law of Deliberate Creation ... (if you are not getting what you want ... you are operating on a habit of thought and a habit or action instead of acting your dream ... so refocus and deliberately create what it is that you want by the happy intense focus until it manifests.) &The Law of Allowance ... (allowing all you desire to unfold before you, allowing others to be who and what they are with no judgment (Discernment ... yes. Preference ... yes.)

With these factors excitedly aligned by your own passion ... IS what manifests into physical &emotional experiences. Set the tone ... and it will come. So know what thought forms create your "Table of Life".

You've experienced many forms of art (acting / painting / face painting / writing / dancing...). Is there a common message that all these mediums help you convey, or is it a way to express different things?

Aaaahhhh ... I still crave the time and space to really unfurl my true self. I have never had the luxury of delving into all the aspects of experiences of my many selves. Never had the luxury of a reeeeal vacation ... always a working one no matter how fun {LOL} ... I've paid my own way in this life seemingly from birth (babysitting for a living from age 7 till my first paycheck job at 15?) and I have always worked till present time ... WITHOUT reserves, savings, monthly checks, "sugar daddies", residuals, or any outside support other than what my own trade/work claims in exchange. I am living proof that there is no such thing as security. You live from moment to moment and can shift any time you create it so as this is truly a hologram. Getting the 'hang of it' is the 'task of skill' in the new realities being birthed through evolution of the species. We ... some of us ... are the first waves of the rough-cut of the Indigo Children. (the Internet provides some interesting data about this archetype of being). It just represents the waves of molds for the archetypes of our future selves. The imperfect ones with special features not quite calibrated. Newer models 'perfect' ... and so it goes. Other girls want the big car and the furs and the 'security' ... I want a solar capable laaaarge motorhome loaded with the best camping/outdoor living tools and accessories complete with satellite and computer/Internet Radio tech set-up for broadcasting &towing a Subaru Forester, a couple bikes, small boat &motorcycle.

Ah yessss ... an unlimited gas card ... all paid up. THE DREAM I really loooove to dance. Still. As mentioned on my website under ALL ONE TRIBE (a modified version of my current plan) of my dream to attract the suitable individuals that understand the revolutionary cellular changes biologically and well as energetically can occur when these "Sacred Concerts" are performed. I dream that I may live out many years in sensual motion to generate sacred moves for children of all ages in world music/performance art concerts under the stars at energy vortices around the planet ... as there are such things as sound, color, light and motion put in certain arrangements that can cause spontaneous healings and upliftment of spirits that no drug nor medicine can recreate.

It is a science and it works and it is fantastic visually and vibrationally and sonically and it attracts people of all ages and revives their connection to God Goddess All nature' of love and peace to All That Is without 'belief or dogma' but by "being". This is where alll that is leading me. A gift to give back to the world as the highest vibrational frequency I am able to generate radiating into the cosmos as a vibratory sig VISUALIZING. Now I am on the road, with my Scotty girl Maya (8); Tahlulah the Kat (3); Rocky the Tortoise (30); Kunda the Parrot (20+); Durrrrrr the Iguana (2) are allll aboard. We are heading to out first location in Sedona to perform the first in a series of many "Sacred Jams &Holy Peanut Butter" concerts under the stars. I am also broadcasting on coast to coast radio simultaneous with the Internet funny, sacred and informational journeys to have people tune into as we explore some amazing things (example: "The Elastic Zenith" ... I can send you a VHS copy if you like. Please let me know?)

Give me a Sacred ceremony with beauty, excitement, intention to send out these tremendous powerful tones with which to align and come out a higher vibration than before you download the frequencies 'cellularly' ... and I'm there!

I can't help it ... It all breathes through me.

Who are the artists that inspire (or have inspired) you the most?

Oh dear! So many have ... some with bits’n pieces of fabulous virtue and I have met personally and up close many many stars of film, stage, music and other arts and abilities. Although many artists have talents to be cherished ... the things I strive to cherish is when I see the living proof of people who are "heart connected" and have that 'harmonious balance' even in the face of tumultuous challenge against all odds. A rare find indeed but it is THAT which I admire. I figure that when all is a rumble: if we are all screaming who is going to row the boat?" ... So it is important to remember that this is a hologram and to "snap out of it!" {Giggle} Nothing is as important as how you "feeel" in any given moment. That "feeling" projects you into your experience and determines the filter you choose to view it from. Like the movie, "The Rookie" ... (regular movie) ... breaks the barriers blocking lifelong fulfilment. Yet watch "Chronos" made for IMAX ...

and layers of life are rekindled through imagery that awaken the memories of the soul. There are sages in all the arts and I would torture myself to break it down to a few. It depends on what subject and seeing what person in what medium contributed to that focus ... see what I mean????
Tooo vast of a subject. Like ... Olympics? Ice Skating Championship? Sarah Hughes ... the young girl who won for truly performing an energetically flawless performance created out of pure joy and it showed!

THAT is "spirit cherishing matter in motion". Although I am not a particular champion ... what motivates me is the very flow that went through her that everyone actually was able to 'see' physically rip through her. THAT energy is the goal. To 'hit the vein' and flow with the oneness of your thrust ! {YESsss} Seriously ... I must think if you really want an answer ... maybe you can ask me in what realms did what artists inspire me with what? {LOL}

- Interview menée par Labroche -