On January 4, 2003 Oded and Rhonda became the proud parents of a baby boy named ATTICUS. The name is from the main character
of To Kill a Mockingbird, his favorite book. It was announced live at the red carpet on E! for the People's Choice Awards.
Oded answers questions from his fans!
Ones2watch4 asked fans over at The Playground Forum for the Renegade Med Jai on Wheels fan site if they could ask Oded
one question what would they want to know. Here are some of their questions and Oded's answers.
Hattie: How did you prepare for the role of Frank Donovan?
Oded: I did a lot of kind of interviews, not interviews, but I went and talked to FBI agents and undercover agents; a
lot of reading. It's kind of amazing talking to these undercover agents because this kind of glamorous life you think it is.
It's not. It's very lonely especially if you go under for a very long time. You don't really talk to anybody or see anybody
except for the subjects you're dealing with because you don't really want to have to lie to anybody else, you know? It's really
As far as physical stuff you try and keep yourself physically fit as an actor in general to be able to do
anything that's asked of you. I do martial arts a little bit. I concentrate on what methods the FBI uses.
Tamara from Brooklin, Maine: Do you ever want to try you hand at writing or directing?
Oded: Directing is something that is very frightening for me at the moment. There's just so much stuff that I need to
learn and there's so much more experience that I need to get as an actor before I can ever imagine directing. I think yes,
I think one day in the very distant future I would be interested in doing that.
As far as writing is concerned, every
once in a while I do try and then I realize how incapable of writing I am so I stop. So basically I can't do anything and
once people find out that I can't act everybody will know that.
Kathy Heinke from Fort Alexander, Wisconsin: Is there a specific role you've always wanted to play? Why?
Oded: I always try to keep myself very open. It's really weird. When I went into drama school I never had an image of
what I wanted to do in my life as an actor. I never wanted to be a film actor, I never wanted to be necessarily only a theatre
actor. I sort of had this image of doing theatre and then doing television and paying my way. The same about the characters
that I've wanted to play. I never sort of restrict myself in the sense that I wanted to do.
I tend to aim more for what
would be a good job, what would be a smart decision in the sense of what could help my career. whether people would enjoy
seeing this role, whether it would open new opportunities.
After I shot The Mummy Returns, I didn't work for about ten
months. Not because there weren't offers there, not because people weren't interested. It's because the roles I was offered
and the roles that people were interested in me for were roles that were, my feeling, were restricting. They were ethnic or
they were roles that were bad guys or roles in movies that I didn't believe in. I felt like they would have been a wrong choice
to make for my career.
We Don't Need Another Hero
by Vanessa Sibbald - Zap2it.com, TV News
Oded Fehr wasn't originally
slated to play the hero on NBC's spy drama "UC: Undercover." According to the show's creator, Shane Salerno, the actor was
more interested in the other side of the law.
"He had wanted to play a small villain role," Salerno tells Zap2it.com their
first meeting. "I sat with him for an hour. When he walked out I said, 'That's our man.'"
In the beginning, the elite unit of the Justice Department that the show focuses on was headed by Keller, to be played
by Jimmy Smits ("NYPD Blue"). However, four days before the pilot began shooting, Smits was forced to withdraw due to contractual
obligations from his former boss, ABC. Caught in a bind, the producers brought on Grant Show ("Melrose Place") to fill in,
planning to re-cast the role if the project was picked up as a series.
NBC did indeed pick up the pilot -- despite the fact that it didn't have a lead attached to it. In short order, Keller
was killed off and Frank Donovan (Fehr) was brought in.
"The original concept of the character, of where we wanted to go with the series, did not lend itself to Grant," explains
Salerno. "Once we did not have Jimmy, we made a real conscious decision to find someone who could follow that story line and
Oded fit that model." ,
Specifically, Salerno says he was looking for someone ethnic for the show's lead, and Grant definitely didn't fit the
bill. Still, Salerno is grateful to the actor for stepping in when needed.
"There's always been this misconception that he got fired, he got dissed -- it certainly wasn't that he didn't want [the
part], but what it was, was what Oded brought with him."
"The reason I picked Oded is because there's no one like him on television. He's not the blond-haired, blue-eyed 'Baywatch'
For his part, Fehr says that it was Salerno's excitement about the project that made him want to join the cast.
"[Salerno's] excitement, and his belief in it -- he just generally believes very strongly in the show -- that just swept
Fehr had only appeared in a handful of British TV projects before landing the very visible role of Ardeth Bey in the
blockbuster hit, "The Mummy." After starring in the film's sequel and the Rob Schneider comedy "Deuce Bigalow: Male Gigolo,"
Fehr decided it was time to do something different.
"I needed to make sure that I opened myself up to as many things as possible, otherwise, I might pigeonhole myself into
only certain types of characters," he says.
"This fit perfectly. This was a great challenge for me to play."
Salerno's casting choices, and use of such notable film actors as Ving Rhames and William Forsythe, make even more sense
once one realizes that the action series is essentially a homage to "Miami Vice."
"When I was 12-years-old this show came on, 'Miami Vice.' I thought those were the two coolest guys on the planet," says
the 28-year-old executive producer. "It was really weird for me to understand why, in the '80s, when I was a kid, there were
like 10 action shows on the air and there were none today."
"Now there's three spy shows, which is hilarious because when I was pitching the show, nobody was doing it."
Salerno thinks his show sets itself apart from the competition -- and considering the recent cancellation of ABC's "
Thieves," he's probably at least partly correct.
"We don't wink at the audience. I think 'Alias' winks at the audience."
As for "The Agency," Salerno says the show is very " serious." "What we do is somewhere in between. We're serious, we're
largely based on real-life events and, hopefully, we're not so serious that we're pretentious."
Fehr may not have much in common with " Vice's" Edward James Olmos, but Jimmy Smits, on the other hand, wouldn't have
been very far off. Not so clear is the link between Don Johnson and Philip Michael Thomas and " UC's" Jon Seda and Vera Farmiga.
"For Jake I was really looking for the ultimate cool young guy. And I saw that with Jon Seda first. With all the actors,
the one thing I can honestly say is when each left the room I went, 'That's Alex,' 'That's Jake ...'"
Whole Cast 'Returns' For Another Thrill Ride
by Tim Lammers
You would think that the Hollywood premiere of
"The Mummy Returns" Sunday night would have been the pinnacle moment for anyone involved in the highly anticipated sequel
to one of the biggest movie blockbusters of 1999.
That is, anyone except for Oded Fehr who's actually bubbling with
anticipation about a Monday's special private screening of the film. Fehr who won raves for his role as the mysterious Ardeth
Bay in the 1999 film -- will be hosting a sneak peek of the movie at Universal Studios in Los Angeles to benefit the Kids
Cancer Connection, a charity that helps children cope with cancer.
"I'm a bit more nervous about that than anything else," Fehr told me in a recent interview. "All of the actors have been
so great. They're going to do their best to show up and they've all signed photos for the charity for me. It takes so little
for us to help so much. If we can help a child with cancer's standard of living -- if we can help with fear and help with
the family, we're giving them a better chance of surviving."
Needless to say, Fehr is savoring every moment of his success, and he's giving back to the community as a thank-you note.
And if writer-director Stephen Sommers wouldn't have had the moxie to change his own script with the original "Mummy" in 1999,
Fehr's happy ending -- and beginning -- is one that we might not have seen.
"In the original script, I didn't survive," Fehr said. "I sacrificed myself to save the others."
But impressed with Fehr's charisma on the set and the foresight of the character's popularity, Sommers decided after
four weeks of shooting in Morocco that Ardeth should live. The result was the scene at the end of the movie where he startles
Rick (Brendan Fraser), Evie (Rachel Weisz) and Jonathan (John Hannah) with his reappearance.
For Fehr, it was a
wonderful validation of his acting skills. "It's the biggest compliment I ever could have asked for," he enthused.
most importantly, it gave Fehr the opportunity to work with Sommers again for "The Mummy Returns." Fehr, of course, jumped
at the opportunity, as did all of the original cast and nearly all of the original crewmembers. Simply put, Sommers endless
enthusiasm for filmmaking was infectious -- and his respect for his co-workers inspires an amazing loyalty.
wasn't such a great task to get everybody back for the second film because working on the first one was such a wonderful experience,"
said Fehr. "Everybody has so much fun working with each other and with Steve. People just love him. He's gives so much energy
and works the hardest of everybody. And, he does amazing work everybody wanted to work with him again. Everybody wanted to.
'Returning' To 'The Mummy'
There's no question that the pressure was on to duplicate, if not exceed, the worldwide success of "The Mummy" with "The
Mummy Returns," but with 98 percent of the cast and crew returning to the fold, Fehr and his fellow actors took the next step
forward with great ease. Perhaps what made the transition easiest for everyone was the mutual respect all the actors had for
"There was nobody there that was a star -- nobody that thought they any more special than anybody else," Fehr said. "We
were all looking forward to working with each other again, and the wonderful thing was that we knew how our characters reacted
to one another. We just picked it up where we left off."
Even with the chemistry in place, Sommers didn't rest on his laurels, said Fehr. Instead of being tossed from one adventure
into another, the writer-director smartly had his characters evolve from the previous film. Set nine years later, Rick O'Connell
and Evie are now married and have a son (Freddie Boath), who serves as a catalyst for the new predicament they get themselves
into with the mummy.
"There's a lot more depth to the relationships between the different characters," described Fehr of his role in the film.
"The bond between Ardeth Bay and the O'Connell's is much, much stronger."
As for his own efforts to develop the
character, Fehr said got into shape both mentally and physically, to make Ardeth "more of a desert man, more of a fighter."
He went into training to improve his swordfighting skills and most importantly, learned how to hold his own on horseback.
On the commentary track on the new "Mummy" ultimate DVD, Fehr jokes with co-stars Arnold Vosloo (Im Ho Tep/The Mummy)
and Kevin J. O'Connor (Beni) about how little horseplay he was involved with, despite appearances to the contrary. But there
was no doubt in Fehr's mind this time around that he -- and not a stunt person -- was going to kick up his heels for the maximum
"When you're able to do it, you give the director a lot more possibilities," Fehr said. "You give him the choice of filming
it whichever way he wants. It made the battle scenes that much more impressive and intense. When you use a stunt guy, he can't
come in close and shoot from the angles he wants to shoot from."
Enhancing the performances of the characters, of course, is yet another eye-popping round of special effects from the
John Berton and the wizards at Industrial Light and Magic.
"The effects are so much more advanced and so much more real," said Fehr.
"It's very frightening how real it looks. From the nine-foot tall Anubis warrior creatures to the little pygmy mummies,
it's absolutely amazing."
But no matter how advanced the special effects become, Fehr said the skill of imagination
must remain sharply intact. Among his special effects scenes in the film is a spectacular scene where Ardeth leads a fight
against the Anubis warriors.
"It's hard work, but you try to do your best," Fehr said. "You have to really concentrate. You try to learn the move
of the fight like a dance. Once you have it down you've got to keep the level of intensity there. It's definitely an experience."
In addition to "working" with the Anubis warriors, Fehr co-starred with another "giant" in a respect the wrestling superstar
The Rock. Fehr was impressed with the feature film debut of the popular wrestler, who plays the pivotal role of the Scorpion
"He does a marvelous job in the movie," said Fehr. "He's got heart and a really good head on his shoulders. He's really
dedicated. I will not be surprised if a few years from now he becomes a huge star."
While nobody's career in Hollywood is "rock" solid, you have to admit that Fehr's career opportunities look extremely
promising. His success with "The Mummy" (and very likely "The Mummy Returns") has put him in the comfortable position to say
"no" to scripts, and effectively steering clear of every actor's nightmare: Being typecast.
"It's always difficult to turn down things," Fehr said. "I'm not in the situation where I can say, 'I have enough money
forever and ever and I don't need anything.' But in order to have a good long career, one must do as many different things
as possible. I need to do other things or I fear that I'll be doing the same things for the rest of my life.
"I hope the next job people see me in is a much smaller film, no special effects and not necessarily ethnic, just a nice
sweet love story."
If anything, he wouldn't mind getting back together with Sommers and the rest of "The Mummy Returns"
company for yet another film with one slight difference.
"Sommers kept joking on the set that we all have to get together to do another movie, but it'll just be about a couple
of guys sitting on the beach in Los Angeles," Fehr mused. "They'll just be talking. That'll be the whole movie."
Guardian Of The Tomb
By Jeff Bond (May 2001)
To Israeli actor Oded Fehr, starring in the mega-blockbuster The Mummy - a film that made him a bit of an international
sex symbol - was really no big deal.
"I did the first movie and my character was supposed to die," Fehr shrugs.
"During the movie, Steve [Sommers] decides to bring my character back and I was like 'Okay, fine. I come back at the
end of the movie.' Then he starts talking about a sequel and I was like, 'Please, do me a favor. We brought him back. It worked.
I did that. No more.' They really had to bend my arm."
All kidding aside, the actor was quite honored when he was invited
to participate in the second outing - especially since it was The Mummy that essentially made his career.
"I was very lucky to do this, I was very excited to do it," he assures 13th Street about filming The Mummy and its sequel
The Mummy Returns. "We did the first one and had such a great experience and we were really looking forward to doing the second
Still, his previous comment about Ardeth Bay, swashbuckling desert guardian of the mummy's tomb, and his near death experience
was no joke. The character was scheduled for an onscreen demise in the 1999 Mummy film.
"In the first movie there's a scene where we're inside the old city and the structures there inside this chamber," Fehr
explains. "There are all these mummies coming and I say my one liner, 'Get out of here, save the girl, kill the creature!'
And I turn around and I fight all these mummies and I wasn't supposed to come out alive."
In The Mummy Returns, Arnold Vosloo's Im-Ho-Tep is not the only heavy faced down by Bay and hero Rick O'Connell (Brendan
Fraser). The two must also square off against the evil Scorpion King, played by pro wrestler-turned-actor The Rock.
"I have to say that I didn't know anything about wrestlers before I made this movie," Fehr admits. "They told me, 'Yeah,
we're getting this guy The Rock who's a wrestler to play the Scorpion King' and I thought they must be joking. I've seen pictures
of The Rock, but they're kiddingthey're bringing some heavy-set guy who's reallyslow to play the Scorpion King?" As it turned
out, Fehr's impression of the actor quickly changed upon meeting him. "Here shows up this good-looking, gentle, sweet man
that is extremely hard working, extremely nice, extremely dedicated, very smart, very intellectual," Fehr says. Perhaps the
most memorable moment shared with The Rock came during an off camera moment one that required the two to perform some real
life swashbuckling. "The production brought in these jeeps with this skinny little driver and we shared the same one," Fehr
recalls. "We were driving and all of a sudden this jeep starts sinking in a dune. We looked at each other, got out of the
jeep and started pushing. The driver was there, but didn't know what he was doing. He was trying to use the four-wheel drive,
but it wasn't working. Both the Rock and me were in costume, full makeup, I'm in a dress and high heels and he's sick and
we were both trying to get this jeep going. It was very surreal."
Before acting, Fehr served in the Israeli armed forces.
While the military may seem a natural training ground for someone destined to star in big-budget action movies, the actor
did not find much of a connection between the two careers. "Life in the Navy is very different and life in Israel is very
different," he says. "The fighting in the acting world is a lot different from the fighting there. My skin still crawls when
we get guns on the set because guns for me, and in Israel, are something that is there for killing. That's it. It's a little
harder for me. But the sword fighting and all that is just boys with toys. It's all fun." Surprisingly enough, Fehr admits
to receiving better training for his onscreen battles in drama school rather than in the military. "You do a lot of training
for stage fighting so you learn a lot of the basics," he notes. "You learn a lot of dance, which is very important because
all these fights you learn are sort of like a dance. I had a lot of training this time with the stunt guys. I stayed in a
hotel with them and it was great. I think I did everything myself in the stunts on this one. They might have done some cover
shots with a stunt man, but I did all my own stunts and the stunt guys were great about it. They gave me a jacket with my
name on it and I'm so proud of it I can't say. At home I'm like 'Oh, my back, I can't move,' but on the film I was a tiger."
As Ardeth Bay, leader of a band of desert warriors, Fehr participated in The Mummy's outdoor action sequences as well
as even more spectacular special effects battles in The Mummy Returns. "I can't tell you how weird it is to wake up in the
morning and go out on set in the desert in this huge, vast area, and they have little orange cones going for miles," Fehr
says of the special effects techniques used in Morocco. "It's really weird, straight lines of cones which are completely unnatural.
Then they have these camp little guys who show up with body-tight blue suits. They just didn't fit. Everyone in the desert
wears desert clothes and these guys looked like they were going on a fashion show. They're dancing around in these tight blue
suits. I knew ILM was going to do an incredible job. And those stunt guys who wore the blue suits did an incredible job."
Actually, for Fehr the biggest challenge in the sequel was avoiding the problem that plagued most of the cast and crew in
the first film: dysentery. "I was sick on the last film almost the whole time," Fehr says. "So this time in Morocco
I ate like a pig thinking, 'Okay, I'll get sick and I'll lose all the weight.' So I'm eating and eating and eating and I never
got sick. It was terrible. My wife kept calling me up saying, 'Okay, stop with the vision quest.' I'm Jewish and she'd say,
'Look, your people were in the desert for 40 years, don't you think it's about time you came home now?'"
Live with Regis & Kelly
Friday, May 25, 2001
Special guest: Oded Fehr
Regis: Okay, we are bringing someone out here in a minute now. (speaking to Kelly) Hope youre gonna be happy, youre
Kelly: Okay, Im ready. (fans herself with a folded piece of paper)
Regis: She likes the dark, suave type.
Kelly: I do.
Regis: And she notices the fellow in the hallway and was all ga-ga over him. Lets bring him out and see what hes
got. Hes, of course, staring opposite Brendan Fraser in the blockbuster hit, The Mummy Returns. Heres Oded Fehr.
Applause, Oded comes out, wearing brown pants, an orange silk type button up shirt with a light beige jacket. Greets,
Regis and Kelly and sits down.
Kelly: Ya see? You see what I mean?
Regis: Yeah, hes got that look.
Kelly: Dark, dangerous
Regis: Yes, dangerous
Oded: (smiling) Dangerous.
Oded: Thank you.
Regis: So dangerous, he just got married in December.
Oded: Yes he did, yes he did.
Regis: Married a producer?
Oded: I did so, yeah.
Kelly: And smart.
Oded: And smart, yeah. No, shes great, shes wonderful.
Regis: You didnt meet her on the movie did you?
Oded: No, we actually, we met at the Opera and we only realized its a great line a couple of months later, when we were
actually dating. Every time someone would say, Where did you guys meet? We met at the Opera. Everybody says, Oh my god,
Regis: Yes, so romantic.
Oded: Yeah, it wasnt like that at the night, but you know, it was great! Shes terrific.
Regis: Thats terrific. But youre from Tel Aviv. Youre from Israel, huh?
Oded: Yes, I am, yeah.
Regis: Born and raised there.
Regis: And were in the Israeli Navy for a while?
Oded: Yup, yeah thats right.
Regis: Did service there.
Oded: Yeah, I did 3 years like everyone else in Israel. In the Israeli Navy, uh, I did basic training, but I must
say I wasnt very much of a warrior in that respect of the Army. So, ah, every time Im being asked questions about the
Navy, its a bit embarrassing, because . . .
Regis: Do they have a big Navy, the Israelis?
Oded: Not really, no, its ah, its very, very small. We call it, thats why I always either say the Army or the Navy,
because the Navy is such a tiny, ah, part of the Army.
Regis: Sure, and so how did you get into acting?
Oded: I, ah, tried out business in Germany with my father and decided its not for me. Its very boring for me.
And I went to the English Theater in Frankfurt and did a very small drama course there for 2 hours a week. And they
asked me to do a show, Sexual Perversity in Chicago by David Mamet. The only reason they asked me to do the show was because
I spoke English better than most of the Germans that were studying there, so . . .
Kelly: And how did you learn to speak English?
Oded: Just watching television, I think. Watching old films and stuff like that. I knew English before, I
could speak English before. We studied it at school. Everybody studies English at school and most everybody speaks
English in Israel. But I did speak English from an early age.
Regis: So you had a leg up on the other group?
Oded: Yeah, yeah.
Regis: And that got ya hooked.
Oded: Yeah, well ah, well I mean watching the films and stuff. I always, I always performed at home, for my parents,
but I was quite a shy kid. I wasnt a big performer for the other kids.
Regis: And then along came The Mummy and you were a part of that blockbuster hit.
Oded: Yeah, yeah that was practically my first job. My first job. Everybody is sort of like, wow, this guy
is so quiet and hes very concentrated. I was just scared to death!
Kelly: You tricked them into thinking that you were this intense performer.
Oded: Yes. I was just standing there scared to death.
Regis: The thing is the movie ends, and of course in the original script you were doomed to die.
Oded: Yeah, yeah.
Regis: But they rewrote it, I guess. The Producer, the Director had it in mind that they were going to have a Mummy
2 and you were going to be a part of that as well.
Oded: Yeah. Steve, I owe it all to Steve Sommers, who wrote and directed the first one and the second one.
And ah, he was great, he showed up one morning at breakfast, in the desert and he comes up to me and (doing a Steve Sommers
impersonation), Hey, ya know, ah, I ah, I ah, why, why should Ardeth Bay die? You know, I like the character, everybody
likes the character. No, no, Ardeth Bay should live. And ah, Oh and if we have a sequel, then ah, you know, you
can do the sequel. And I was so nervous just doing the first one that I sort of went, Aaahhh, let me just finish this
one, before we talk about a sequel! I didnt feel very confident at the time.
Regis: First time for whoever to say that, Ill tell you that!
Kelly: But thats got to feel good to be part of two such enormous, ah, block offices successes.
Oded: Yeah, its huge.
Regis: Whats it like? Those movies look awf . . . I mean, they were exciting to watch, because they were full of
special effects, but I mean, they must have been a bear to work on. A lot of work, huh?
Oded: This one! This time around it was very difficult. I mean, we filmed it for 6 months and I had to be
in the desert for about just a bit longer than a month longer than everybody else because I have this big battle scene at
the end of the movie. And we had sand storms, and we had floods, and we had hail the size of ice cubes and we had to
be helicoptered off the set one day back to the village because of the ah . . .
Oded: Yeah, because it was all flooding. Unbelievable.
Regis: And out in the desert you dont get a weather report saying, you can expect a sand storm tomorrow, it just comes!
Oded: No you dont, you dont and its so weird because we filmed there exactly the same time 2 years earlier and the weather
was great. It was perfect. We had one day of a sand storm, thats it and this time around we didnt have a day that
was perfect weather. Not one day! It was unbelievable.
Regis: You did a lot of horse back riding in this one. Learned to ride a horse for the movie?
Oded: Yes. Yes, I did, I did. After I was very much embarrassed with the first movie because I didnt really
get to ride on the first movie. It was mostly a stunt guy. They actually had boxes up for me, you know they held
boxes up for me, I was like standing on a box and theyd go, Action and Id sit down on the hourse and Id (waving hand), Yallah,
imshi and you know, theyd cut and put the stunt guy and he rides off.
Kelly: So did you lie to them? When you were auditioning for the first Mummy and they said, So can you ride a horse?
and youre like, Yeah, I can ride a horse.
Oded: Yeah, I dont, I dont lie.
Kelly: You dont lie?
Regis: See? Hes absolutely perfect!
Kelly: I told you.
Kelly: I told you. Dark, dangerous, doesnt lie. (fans herself with folded paper)
Oded still laughing embarrassed.
Regis: We have a scene from The Mummy Returns. Youre on horse back here, where youre charging the Anubis warriors.
Regis: Lets take a look at Ardeth Bay in action.
Shows film clip.
Regis: Ya know, ever since I was a kid, Ive loved those desert epics. Ya know where you have hundreds and thousands
of people charging across the desert?
Kelly: Your horse back riding has improved.
Oded: Yes it has! Yes, on this movie I did everything myself. Im very proud of it.
Regis: All right, Oded. Its been great having you here.
Oded: Thank you so much.
Erev Tov with Guy Pines on Israeli Cable TV
June 14, 2001
This interview aired on the Erev Tov Show on Channel
3. Oded was eating with his wife Rhonda and his little niece and nephew in a restaurant in Tel Aviv.
Guy Pines: "An Israeli movie star in Hollywood. The blockbuster movie The Mummy 2 has turned Oded Fehr from Israel into
a big star. Even MTV has done a parody with him last week. We've met him yesterday very quietly here in Israel, in Tel Aviv,
eating hummus with the family."
Guy Pines: "How much we all love Israelis having success in Hollywood. Even for the small lines the actor Oded Fehr had
in the first Mummy movie we all enjoyed. Those who've already seen The Mummy 2 know that Fehr is almost a main actor there,
in a movie that's worth a lot of millions. And now he's in Israel for a small visit, a private visit. Tal Pitel met him"
Tal Pitel: "Oded Oded, first thing I'd like to tell you that you're eating hummus with a fork..."
[Natali: it's common to eat hummus with a pitta, which is a kind of bread. You weap the hummus with a pitta. BlackB:
hummus is a middle eastern speciality made from chickpeas]
Oded: "No, no, here, I wipe, I wipe, see? Here you go!"
Guy Pines: "In Yermiyahu Street in Tel Aviv, nobody recognizes Oded Fehr, unlike Mili Avital
[Natali: she's also an Israeli actor. She played in Stargate with Kurt Russel, and she's David Schwimmer's girlfriend,
the one from "Friends". She had an acting career in Israel before she left for the States. BlackB: Mili Avital plays Scheherazade
in Arabian Nights]
Fehr never had an Israeli career.
Tal: "Are you being recognized in the streets of LA today?"
Oded: "Yes, even after I've cut my hair, people still recognize me".
Tal: "Have you noticed that your accent is becoming American?"
Oded: "No! no! no way- you think so?"
Guy Pines: "This accent hasn't come to him easily"
Oded: (speaking English and then returning to Hebrew) "The possiblity to speak English as an Englishman and to sound
British - It was something that for me was a real tough thing. I had to invest a lot of time to learn the language. I used
dictionaries, reading. My friends used to go out to the pubs and I stayed at home reading and using the dictionary".
Guy Pines: "But after this entire work on his English, in The Mummy they wanted him to speak Arabic".
Oded: "The director wrote in English what he wanted me to say in Arabic, and he trusted me that I'd go and find out how
to say it in Arabic. Of course I was tempted to say "Hi mum" and "What's up bro" and so on, but I didn't, but "sirma ma-asalam
ya ahi" works in Arabic and also in Hebrew, so it was ok."
[Natali: "ahi" in Hebrew is like "bro"/"brother" in English. In Arabic you should say "ahouy" and not "ahi" - but it's
Guy Pines: "Preparing for The Mummy 2, Fehr had to work on his riding and martial arts skills, what's making him capable
to present his skills on the grass in Herzeliah Pituah"
[at home in Herzeliah Pituah]
Oded: "If my fans met me, they would've been very disappointed. I'm a very normal guy, right? (addressing his nieces
and his nephew) I'm just an uncle, right, I'm not special to other uncles.
Roni, 10: "Yes, you are"
Roni: "Cause you're a movie star".
Guy Pines: "Like Roni, the 10 years old, the producers of The Mummy also think that he's a star. They changed the end
of the first Mummy movie so Oded could participate in the sequel."
Oded: "What do you think about the hair? Is it better now or with long hair?"
Roni: "With the long hair"
Tal Pitel: "The fact that you've cut your hair means that there won't be a Mummy 3?"
Oded: "In The Mummy 2 I played my part the biggest and best that I could without playing the lead role. And I really
don't know how we, the same group of people, can do a third one, and still make it interesting for the audience to see and
for my career too".
Guy Pines: "In The Mummy 2 Oded is shown on the promotion poster for the movie, and another sign for his success is the
parody MTV has done last week with him for the MTV Movie Awards. 2 years ago Oded was chosen by People Magazine as one of
the 50 most desirable men in the entertainment world".
Tal Pitel: "So you've got married, it's like you've given up all the wild life of Hollywood."
Oded: "I wouldn't know what to do with the wild life of Hollywood. I don't believe in many many relationships, messin'up,
different girls every night - it's not for me".
Guy Pines: "And this is his wife, Rhonda Tollefson, Sean Connery's co-worker. Together they've done "Finding Forrester"
and "Entrapment". First time in Israel and she understands the excitement around her husband".
Rhonda talks about Oded in Israel - English (wav.566 KB)
Rhonda: "I'm with him here, it's like when I'm with Sean Connery in Scotland. It's like - you know that same - he has
Oded and Tal: "Wow! Wow!"
Oded: "It was not being in the same line as Sean Connery."
Rhonda: "But he does. I mean in Scotland - you know - because in Scotland there aren't many really famous and successful
Scotish movie stars."
Tal: "Is there any chance that you are going to work with her?"
Oded: "Well, I always say that we're very happily married at the moment and I think - there's no need to challenge it.
I never wanna make a movie with her and she would never wanna make a movie with me where people would say 'Oh, she got him
the job because she's the producer' or something like that."
Guy Pines: "In a few days Oded will leave and head back to LA, until then he's still at his mother's place, on the grass".
Oded: "I'm the little in the family. For my mum I'm still the little son. I can call up and say I got that, I was on
this and that paper and so on, and my mum would ask if I'm eating well and dressed up warm enough. Mum is mum, no matter what
CTV, October 17, 2001
Vicki Gabereau: I'm sure you will recognize my guest now as the much adored Ardeth Bay - one of the great names in film
history - from "The Mummy" and "The Mummy Returns". He stars in a new NBC series which is called "UC: Undercover". And in
1999 People Magazine voted him - this is the worst...
Oded: I know
VG: ... sexiest import. I don't know, it's sort of like a Huyandi. This is Oded Fehr.
VG: Isn't that kinda like a Japanese car. Isn't it.
Oded: I know, I know. That was a very difficult thing to handle. I was dating my now wife at the time and she wouldn't
have anything to do with me for three months just because of that nice little article.
VG: She was embarrased.
Oded: Well, she wasn't embarrased. She's in the business herself. She's a producer and she knows, you know, kind of actors
and so on. You know, that came out and Deuce Bigalow was coming out and me with the long hair and all the rest of it. She
just wouldn't have anything to do with me.
VG: She thought you must be really a jerk.
Oded: Yeah. People think it's good, it's not necessarily.
VG: But work-wise, was it any good?
Oded: Work-wise everything is good. I've been really lucky so far.
VG: No, but when People Magazine pays attention to you like that, is that a good thing for work?
Oded: I suppose it is.
VG: Apart from the girlfriend problem.
Oded: I don't know. I suppose it is... I don't know. I think the reason I got that article is because the character I
played in The Mummy is such a dark, mysterious, powerful kind of character. Very different to me.
VG: You're not dark and mysterious?
Oded: Ahhh, not mysterious at all. No.
VG: A complete and open book.
Oded: [nods] Open book.
VG: [grinning] Oh goody! Okay!
VG: How come you're an actor?
Oded: I don't know. I always kind of loved it. I always used to perform to my family when I was a kid. And I never thought
of becoming an actor, I actually thought I'd be more of a businessman.
VG: What's your father do?
Oded: My father's a businessman... he's actually a Doctor of Physics, but he does business nowadays. And I thought that
is what I'm going to be doing. But I ended up doing a small drama course at the English theatre in Frankfurt... and I kind
of fell in love with it.
VG: You just did it for fun? You were studying in Germany?
Oded: Yeah, I mean I wasn't studying. I decided to try out business and I did that with my Dad for a couple of years
and I just couldn't find my way through it.
VG: What was it? What were you widgets? Selling stuff?
Oded: Oh, all kinds... modern technology, computers things and so on. It wasn't me, you know. And I started this drama
course just for fun... two hours a week. But for me it was just fun and I was never happier.
VG: So, you figured, maybe I'll give this a try?
Oded: I decided, yeah, I'll give it a try. I decided... you know, I was very scared of telling my father that I wanted
to do acting.
VG: I bet you were!
Oded: But he actually loved the idea... I think he saw me on stage and that helped. You know, he was very proud and very
happy for me to do this. So I decided to try out for the schools in England. I asked my drama teacher at the English theatre,
which are the best schools. And she said there's the Bristol Old Vic or RADA, but you won't get into those... and then there's
yadda, yadda, yadda...
So I decided I have to go for the Bristol Old Vic or RADA. And I got into the Bristol Old Vic.
VG: What did you do for your audition piece? [grins] Do it for me now?
Oded: No! [laughs embarassed] I did actually, I did... I had to do a classical speech, a modern speech and a song. So
I did the modern version of it... we did these sketches in bars. So I did the wolf from modern day "Little Red Riding Hood".
Which is very funny... he wants to have sex with her and eat her.
VG: They probably fell for that, did they?
Oded: Yeah! Oh they loved that...
VG: I can't imagine it myself, but anyway...
Oded: I did Cassius from Julius Caesar. And obviously I did it all wrong and how dare I do Shakespeare to the English.
[big grin] But actually that was fine. They did like that.
And a song I did ummm... [looks down, then up] I can't sing... I cannot sing.
VG: You did a song called "I cannot sing"?
Oded: No. I did from the show... what was it... the "Rocky Horror Picture Show". That was the only song I knew all the
words to... Yeah, I know...
VG: Sounds like a bloody nightmare to me! I don't know how you got in there!
VG: You did Shakespear to the English and you sang a bad song.
Oded: I think they felt that they're getting too many good actors and so on...
Oded: and they felt they needed a challenge...
VG: and you were it...
Oded: and they thought, you know, we'll take the worst actor possible and we'll try to work with them.
VG: We'll mold him...
Oded: And by the third year, I have to say, by my third year my singing teacher at drama school said I'm almost bearable.
VG: Really?!? Well that's good. And have you ever had a singing part in a film?
Oded: No... and I really don't think I will ever have a singing part in a film.
VG: Yeah, well you just never know.
Oded: You never know!
VG: Okay, now... so "The Mummy" bit. Which is the thing that really put you on the map, I guess. Isn't it true?
VG: You still have a slight Israeli accent. You still have... you do.
Oded: [narrows his eyes] What accent? What are you saying?
VG: But you had more of an accent when you were doing...
Oded: I had more of an Arab accent when I was doing the show.
VG: It was really funny. It was more like Bella Lugosi (sp?) I thought you were going to come on this show and talk to
me like that.
Oded: No... obviously, when I did the show... when I was rehearsing "The Mummy" and I was working.... My brother, I always
share everything with my brother. And we both grew up in Israel. And I would talk to him over the phone and I would say [puts
on accent] I'm going to be speaking like this as Ardeth Bay. And he would [say] but that's not an Arab accent. [I said] Yeah,
I know, but Americans, you know they like it that way and that's the way it is.
Oded: Steve Sommers, he's so great because he would just... you know he would write a line and he would want it to be
in Arabic. But he doesn't know Arabic. When he's writing, he doesn't have anybody with him to do it for him. So, he would
just write something that sounds Arabic to him. And he actually wrote a line in the second one, which was ha-room barashad
[spelt phonetically]. Which doesn't sound Arab in any way to me at all. So I changed it when we were actually there, I made
it into something that actually means something.
That's when I go [hand over heart and outward motion] Allah humah ah [phonetically spelt].
VG: Right, which means something.
Oded: It means "God is with us".
VG: Right. So was he prepared for you to ch-- re-write his stuff?
Oded: Oh yeah, he wanted it... By that time he sort of knew...
VG: Public humilitation is not good for a screenwriter.
Oded: No it's not. No, he knew by that point that that's what we would probably do. He loved it. I sort of added all
sorts of things.
VG: Was that your... when you auditioned, did you have that hair?
Oded: Yeah. That was my haif.
VG: Oh my god! They probably fell right over. You'll do fine for Ardeth.
Oded: Well, they sort of... they were looking for somebody that looked like that. And don't think there were... I was
very unique in that respect. I don't think there were too many people in England, at the time, that looked like me. So when
they were auditioning, I came in and it was either "me" or "me". So I got the part. Yeah, I was kinda lucky.
VG: Yeah, no kidding. Well we'll carry on with this clever conversation when I come right back. And talk about the new
Oded: I actually noticed that. I was watching the show one day and all of a sudden I see the last name there. And I'm
thinking 'oh', I wish to find out where it's from.
VG: Yeah. He's - well, I guess it's a German name 'Fehr' isn't it. Which ......Brendan Fehr who's in Roswell. Ok, so
now we're back . This is Oded Fehr who plays in a new TV series called Undercover and he plays the character of Frank Donovan.
And you're meaner than a sack of vipers. I'm telling you. You scared me.
Oded: In a good way?
VG: Oh, In a very good way. Yeah, yeah. And there's a scene - you have one of your co-stars with you and it's Jarred
Paul who's sitting right over there. And he plays a guy who kinda has to prove himself to you. And he says "you know my father",
he says - "You know my father" and you say "Yeah, I know your father and you're nothing like him." [to Jarred Paul] You're
sunk, aren't you?
Anyway it's nice that you came here together. So shall we look at a clip of this?
VG: ... so just in case. Where's it on?
Oded: It's on Sunday nights at ten o'clock on NBC.
VG: And it's been on already?
Oded: Oh yeah, we're much in the beginning though. This I think is the third episode.
VG: I've just seen one episode, so this is a clip from it, no doubt. .... and I tell you.
VG: Ah yes, the strong silent type.
Oded: yes, I win more than I loose. It's so interesting...
VG: It's a good line.
Oded: ... that I say "I win more than I loose" and yet I always get in trouble, never really quite manage to do it the
way I was planning to.
VG: That's the kind of the conflict I guess in the show is that you start up with a plan and then it gets where you have
to fix it. Like Lassie.
Oded: Yes. Exactly. Like Lassie. Our show is like Lassie. Otherwise it wouldn't be that interesting if I would just in
the beginning of the show say ok, that's what's gonna happen and that's exactly what happens.
VG: No, you have to have conflict and that has to be resolved. So you're shooting this in Vancouver?
Oded: I would say because it's beautiful and it's fantastic and I love being here and so on [applause] and the producers
would say because it's cheap.
VG: Well it's cheaper.
VG: Yes, because, you know, if you go to the stores and something is on sale, 50 percent off - you'll get if for
Oded: Yes, everybody says that about the shopping thing. My wife is very happy about that.
VG: It's true.
VG: You have climbed the Grouse Mountain
Oded: Yes I did. That was fun. Jarred did it like, in record speed. We, I think, about, what is it, two and a half hours
VG: That's not record speed honey. Forty-five minutes is record speed.
VG: Two and a half hours is my speed. Yes, you could be carried up in two and a half hours. So much for you. I thought
you were like this big machine... running up the Grouse Mountain. Two and a half hours you say.
Oded: No, we actually did it in an hour and fifteen minutes or some. We like it, it's nice. Actually we did it twice
VG: Right. What are your applications as far as shooting here. Are you shooting every day? Does it matter...?
Oded: Yes, sometimes we have days off like today, but it's very long hours, it's most of the time ... you know, I thought
shooting movies was hard, but this is... I take my hat off to people who do this. It's really amazing. The hours are very
very long. And when you have time off you usually spend it learning your lines for the next episode. It is amazing. The crew
I have to say are the most fantastic crew. They, you know, like the camera guys, they have the camera, this heavy thing on
their shoulder like most of the day.
VG: You mean, they're hand-held cameras?
Oded: Most of the time it's hand-held. Either hand-held or steady cam which is still ... I mean you have to carry it.
VG: And your back must kill you.
Oded: I have always, I've got like, you know, anti-inflammatory creams that I give them
VG: You're the doctor ... on the set?
Oded: Yeah, I know how to take care of them. ... problems, all the rest of it, I do the whole thing.
VG: .... problems, medical problems.
VG: You were in the Navy?
Oded: Yes I was. For three years.
VG: A Sailor? No. What kind of Navy were you in?
Oded: The Israeli Navy is a very very good Navy but it's very small...
VG: Not lot of boats.
Oded: Well, yes. I mean, for the size of Israel to have enough boats, it's just that, the Army itself, you know the Navy
in Israel is, the whole Navy, everybody there is like one Air Force base, like one big Air Force base. So the Navy is not
very big. But it's actually very nice because you kinda know everybody.
VG: Right. So the big paramachine is the Military, is the Army and the Air Force - and the Navy, how do you get to be
in the Navy? Because you still conscripted into the Israeli Military...
Oded: Well, it's not the Army, the Navy, the Air Force, it's almost the same thing. And it all goes from the same place.
You join the Army and then they put you wherever they think you serve best. You can request to go wherever you want to.
VG: Did you?
Oded: I did actually.
VG: Please put me in the Navy, please! Something like that?
Oded: Yes, just more tears, the whole thing.
VG: Yes, I think that would probably work really well in the Israeli Military. Tears don't work at all. But it's kind
of a better life to be in the Navy, wouldn't it be?
Oded: I don't know. I had a very good Army service in the sense that I have a bad back, so that I wasn't really allowed
to do anything that's too dangerous. And yet, I was very involved and did a lot of interesting things. So actually I enjoyed
my three years in the Army. But I mean, some other guys, like some of my friends, they go through nightmare.
VG: Of course, because they have to do... terrible things, and they have to witness terrible things and they might be
Oded: I have to say that I spent three weeks in the Gaza strip and that was very shocking. It's very difficult to explain.
How it feels, what it feels like. It's very harsh.
VG: Well, you go home sometimes?
Oded: I try to. I try to go home as often as I can. It's funny when you have family both in Germany, Israel and in the
States. You'll never really get to take a vacation. Every time you'll try to take a vacation you gotta go there.
VG: They'll be mad at you.
Oded: But I try as often as I can.
VG: Your brother is in Germany?
Oded: No, my brother is in Israel, my sister is in Israel. My Dad is in Germany.
VG: Well, nice to meet you.
Oded: Very nice meeting you.
VG: If I would have seen you in the streets I wouldn't have known you were that .... guy from The Mummy. Maybe you'll
come back again
Brad Leggatt (Host): Our guest here today can be seen on Mummy and Mummy Returns and on a new TV series right now
UC: Undercover. Please welcome Oded Fehr.
Oded Fehr: How ya doin
BL: How are ya?
OF: Very good. Very good. Thank you
BL: We got a stoked audience and
its no wonder. Oded theyre calling you like the next George Clooney. Youre like the hottest thing in Hollywood right now.
OF: Wow! Thank you. Thank you. I actually didnt expect anybody to know who I am but uh you guys seem to know so thats
BL: You got a great response. Of course the Mummy and The Mummy Returns just huge for you. Well get into the movies
later. But lets talk about the new series happening right now, UC: Undercover on ABC.
OF: Yeah yeah.
BL: Where you
playyou kinda head up a detective uh service.
OF: Im uh ..were Federal Agents and Im the head of the Team. Um, basically.
BL: Youre kickin some butt on that show.
OF: Yeah we try to yeah.
BL: Its pretty intense. So we were watching
a little bit of that and uh youve got to kill people. Youve got guns to peoples heads and you
OF: Yeah uh [scratches chin
and looks uncomfortable] We try..
BL: Youre like an outlaw.
OF: I mean the show does have violence in it but its about,
you know, its about Federal Agents who are trying to save lives and who are trying to take down the worst criminals in the
state and probably soon in different countries. And uh its exciting, its good, yeah.
BL: What about yourself? Do you take
a personal interest in that? Playing like uh the kinda cops and robbers kind of thing? You take it personal cause its not
like not like your character in The Mummy Returns. But uh well get into that
OF: No, no its not. I have to say ahh for
me its ridiculous in the sense that I grew up in Israel you know the only FBI agents that Ive ever seen were on television
and uh when I was doing research for the show it was so weird because my brother was visiting and both of us went to the Federal
OF: And we walk inyou know the guards at the entrancewere like Yeah hi were here to see the FBI
. And it just seemed so strange. Its very strange for me to be playing that kind of a character, but its great. Its a great
BL: You definitely pull it off. The Mummy and The Mummy Returns you had hair down to [gestures to middle
of Odeds back] here for that didnt ya? What happened to that? You got the hair chopped..
OF: Yeah [laughing] A lot of
BL: Was that for the
OF: A lot of people are upset that I did cut my hair. I do have people come up to me in
the streets and [points finger at imaginary person] Hold on youre the guy from The Mummy Returns. Why did you cut your hair??
What did you do? So, I
BL: Ladies, did you like the long locks when it was
OF: Uhh [audiences cheers] no,no
Well get into a little bit of The Mummy and he Mummy Returns after we
Brad Leggatt: Youre in Vancouver now. You live here and your wife is in L.A. Do you have a pool like that? [gestures
off-screen and refers to something that happened during the break]
Oded Fehr: No, no dont, no [laughs] No, we live
in apartments actually built around Los Angeles.
BL: You probably needed a pool around shooting The Mummy and The Mummy
Returns. You shot in the Sahara
BL: Around 180 degrees (Fahrenheit) everyday.
OF: Yeah yeah yeah, it
was harsh. It was harsh but uh it was great great experience. Yea, it was really really wonderful you know. I grew up in Israel
so culturally it, I kinda got on with the locals so it was great to be able to speak a couple words every once in a while
in Arabic and surprise them. It was nice.
BL: Lets talk aboutit was two big blockbuster movies with The Mummy and
The Mummy Returns that did very well at the box office. And I should say congratulations [Oded is studying his shoes during
this compliment] first and foremost on that. Talk about what its like to be involved in such a high-action movie and
then to get a sequel out of it. I mean after the first one, youve got to be thinking Oh man what do we do for the second one?
OF: Ah well I, when I first got the script for the first Mummy the character that I played died towards the end. And wasnt
supposed to live on to the sequel and only when we were shooting [turns to quiet audience]. Dont worry about it, I did come
BL: Yeah you did come back.
OF: I did come back. So when we were shooting in the desert in Moroccouh uh, the
director, the director Stephen Sommers comes up to me and says. You know what? I decided I want Ardeth Bey to come back.
And he added a scene in the end. So, for me, the first Mummy was a first job and I was excited about in it. And, all of a
sudden, I hear that not only am I going to live, the characters going to live on, you know maybe we could be doing a sequel
and you know I could , uh, I could be in it.
OF: It was just amazing. I have been the luckiest man alive.
BL: More with Oded Fehr. Coming up here well talk about Deuce Bigalow: Male Gigolo.
OF: [looks chagrined] Alright.
BL: Weve been hanging out with Oded Fehr [turns to Oded] Deuce Bigalow: Male Gigolo. Oh course you were the gigolo
Oded Fehr: yeah
BL: You had Rob Schneider trash your place. You know, just a hilarious movie.
OF: Yeah yeah thats
true and you can see my butt in it [turns and looks at audience behind him]. Which now all of a sudden I feel very self-conscious
with all of you guys behind me [looks over shoulder at audience again]
BL: We actually had a poll before the show and
unanimously they want to see your butt.
OF: [laughs] Oh suregreat. [camera pans enthusiastic audience of teens] As soon
as we cut, [deadpans] as soon as we cut we can do that. Okay? As soon as we cut. [audience cheers]
BL: Green Room, Green
Room well work it out later. Talk about uhh Rob Schneider. Hes a lot of fun to work with
OF: Oh yeah hes fantastic and
were ah good friends since the movie and were hoping, were hoping to do ahh something else together soon. I so I dont know.
Theres always talk about Deuce Bigalow II and things like that but hopefully well do something together.
BL: What do you
have...I dont want to put you on the spot but what do you have more fun doing? Comedy or an action-thriller like The Mummy
or The Mummy Returns? Cause The Mummy was kind of a comedic thing too, I mean Brendan Fraser
OF: Ahh, The Mummy, The Mummy
is such uh I just love it. I think its such a great movie and uh everybody, its a movie for everyone. I loved doing it and
its always close to my heart because that was my first job.
OF: But I loved doing Deuce
you have more fun doing the comedy?
OF: Well I dont know I cant say. You know, I loved both of them, I loved both of them
just as much. Uhh, its nice, its nice to be able to do as many things as possible. So I cant really say, I loved both of them.
The Mummy is obviously is is you know that will always be my first job.
BL: Yeah. Well keep our fingers crossed with you
and Rob Schneider getting another project
OF: I hope soI hope so yeah.
BL: Any ideas maybe? Any ideas that you guys
are working on right now?
OF: Well I cant say but theres one thing that were working on together but theres always as
I said theres Deuce Bigalow II like Im sure the studios would be happy to do that
OF: But they have to come
up with an idea or something
Brad Leggatt: With Oded Fehr here. We have uh Christmas is coming up. Youve never celebrated
Christmas you were born in Tel Aviv.
Oded Fehr: Yeah.
BL: Christmas is kinda new to you, but now youre like a little
kid. Its all great. Its all new to you.
OF: Oh yeah I love it. I love it. My wife obviously, she grew up in Los Angeles
so they celebrate Christmas, and its wonderful I love it. Last year I that was the first Christmas kinda with her family that
we did a big thing. They were all buying presents and I was like Mr. Scrooge going , Wait a minute. Wait a minute. Thats too
much here. Too much there. But I ended up getting the most out of everybody so [ Host laughs]
BL: Now you like it?
OF: You know now everythings cool. I like it its good yeah!
BL: You have your gifts purchased yet? Or, you still
have to go out and..
OF: No shes doing it for me. Ive been a bit busy so shes actually taking care of that which is nice.
BL: Where can I find someone that can do that for me?
OF: I know [smiles] The only problem is that I have to get something
OF: Yeah yeah.
BL: We dont want to get you
OF: I didnt do that yet sooo
BL: The audience
was telling me that for my girlfriend lingerie and diamonds
BL: What do you think is that something? [Oded
tosses head from side to side]
BL: Is that what youre going to do for your wife? Rhonda?
OF: Yeah. I
dont know well see. Well have to see [looks at feet again and the Host laughs] Either that or a pony, Im not sure what..
[looks at his shirt] Checks the pocket
BL: [laughs] Yeah more with ..Pony?! You could get her a pony?
OF: [deadpans] Nahhh I was just joking. [Hosts cracks up and audience laughs]. She doesnt really like horses.
[giggles] Okay. Cause youre like on a horse on The Mummy Returns
OF: But she doesnt, she doesnt[shakes head]
like horses so
OF: No no
BL: So well get on to something else. Well find out what more Christmas gift ideas with Oded
Fehr. NBC Sunday nights at 10 p.m.
Oded Fehr: NBC Sunday nights at 10 p.m. UC: Undercover
BL: Your wife Rhonda. We
talked about her a little bit earlier. Shes a producer. She produced, helped produce, uh, Finding Forrester
BL: Which was shot in Toronto.
OF: Yeah thats right.
BL: Youve made it out there. What did you think?
OF: Yeah I love it. I love Canada. I love Toronto. Ive been to Toronto, Calgary, and Vancouver so far. And Ive been obviously
up the mountains here and the mountains there and all that but I love it. The funniest thing about, the funny thing about
Canada is that everybody is so nice. You people are just so nice. [audience cheers]
OF: And I have to say
that uh myself and friends and so on that come from the States to work here. Were all so shocked that at how nice people are.
Were always thinking that theres an edge to it. That theres something that What do you want? Why are you being so nice? And
uh its its its great. I love Toronto. A lot of culture, a lot of theater and so on its great.
BL: Ashley Scott was
on. She said we are so nice, she actually saw someone walk into a mailbox and apologize to the mailbox.
OF: [playing along]
BL: Whether thats true or not [makes crazy sign by moving hand in circular motion next to temple].
[deadpans] That happens. That happens [audience giggles].
BL: Alright were going to do a Rapid-Fire questionnaire with
you Oded coming up after the video. And this is like very intense so you knowIm warning you.
Of: Ahh I ..Okay okay
Look at him hes all As promised Oded you know were not going to quiz you on the videos [Oded wipes sweat from his brow]. We
were talking earlier that you were put on the spot. VH1 put you on some video show , game show kinda thing
Uhhh yeah. It was called
BL: And you really didnt know
OF: The List and I really didnt know
BL: You did
It really wasnt my best performance no
BL: 80s music isnt your thing..
OF: Ahhh . Yeah
BL: Were not going to do
that to you.
OF: Okay what are you doing to me?
BL: Whos Bananarama? No, Im just kidding
We have ahh its a rapid-fire questionnaire [Oded wipes brow some more] and uh theyre very straightforward. You ready?
[looks nervous] Yeah.
OF: I think so.
BL: Whats the one thing
OF: Wait. Okay now.
OF: Sorry [looks down at shoes again]
BL: Whats the one thing about Christmas that you love the most?
Oh. Family. Getting together.
BL: Thanks. [audience cheers] Hold your applause. Hold your applause. Hes not done. Wait
until he starts sweating.
OF: Oh. [laughs]
BL: Okay. What would you like for Christmas?
OF: [shakes head back
and forth while thinking] To be with my family. I dont really want anything else
BL: Ahhh there it is again.
BL: Awwww. Fromage [Host is implying the answer was cheesy?] Whos your favorite
on-screen leading lady?
OF: [pauses] Thats a great question. [pauses] Ahh [pauses] You know its so difficult to say. I
dont, I dont really have a, I dont [puts hand to head and gestures like he cant think of someone off the top of his head]
BL: Well lets get a list favorite Cameron Diaz
OF: No. No , lets say, lets say the two girls on my show.
OF: Vera Farmiga and Bruklin Harris.
OF: Oh yeah. Great, great. [audience
BL: Boxers or Briefs? [some hoots from audience]
OF: Uhh boxers
BL: Who put this on here? Boxers?
[looks uncomfortable] Uh yeah.
BL: Besides UC: Undercover and Select here
OF: [looks back at audience] Were doing
the butt thing right after
BL: Oh thats right. I forgot the Green Room shenanigans. Maybe show a little bit later Besides
UC: Undercover and Select, of course, what uh, do you like to watch on television when youre at home?
and Select, no
BL: We already
OF: No beside those. No, usually I would just uh I watch sit-coms. I watch a lot of
sit-coms. I find it kind of relaxing to let my brain go and you know, just watch Friends and Fraiser
BL: Mindless humor?
OF: All that, yeah. Kinda stuff yeah.
BL: Will there be a Mummy part 3?
OF: I hope so. I dont know. I hope so.
BL: I think everybody here hope so too. [audience cheers and Oded smiles] Okay, youre married we talked about your wife.
How did you propose to Rhonda?
OF: [pauses and smiles] Ahhh we were shooting The Mummy Returns and I took her away to
a romantic weekend in Belgium and did it there.
BL: Awwwww [claps from audience].
OF: Awwww [looks back at audience]
BL: Are you a cat or dog person?
OF: Dog. [audience member yells approval, others yell woof woof]
BL: Finish this
sentence: Filming UC: Undercover in Canada has been?
OF: The most wonderful experience.
BL: [laughs like he was expecting
that response] Yeah. [audience cheers] And, finally, what are your plans for Christmas?
OF: Ah, to be with my family
again. I dont know, as far as taking a vacation, we might be going to Italy [waves his body from side to side] but were not
sure. It depends on when Im coming back here soall that.
BL: Oded Fehr everybody. Thank you very much for coming down.
I really appreciate it and best of luck to you. [They shake hands]
First there was Rudolph Valentino in The Sheik. Then came Omar Sharif in Lawrence of Arabia. Now there's Oded Fehr
in The Mummy Returns. Did you say "Who?" You obviously aren't one of the hordes of female moviegoers swept away by the actor
with the dark flowing locks who plays Ardeth Bay, a mysterious desert warrior, in this week's No. 1 box office buster. Nor
have you perused one of the dozens of Internet shrines that blossomed like love posies after he made his big-screen debut
in 1999's The Mummy. But his legions of admirers are starting to rival the grains of sand in the Sahara.
"It was the black hair and the deep, coffee-color eyes," says Bettina Katzenberger, 31, of Heilbronn, Germany, who oversees
the Oded Fehr Appreciation Site (members.tripod.de/ofas). "He's so intense in his acting, I was hooked from the first moment."
Don't feel too out of the loop. The Tel Aviv-born Fehr, 30, has only four pictures on his résumé (the others are Deuce
Bigalow: Male Gigolo and the in-limbo Texas Rangers).
But his swashbuckling role as the protector of the mummy's curse has been memorable enough to earn him heartthrob status.
Says Fiona MacDonald of Brampton, Ontario, who created the appreciation site, "Ardeth Bay is committed to saving the world,
and women like a guy who commits."
Fehr acknowledges that supporters have brought him media recognition. "That's why People named me sexiest import in the
1999 Sexiest Man Alive issue. "All the e-mails and letters let them know there was interest in me."
And he's grateful, especially since Ardeth was nearly killed off in the first outing until director/writer Stephen Sommers
came to his senses. "The character is very much of a romantic, heroic and powerful," the actor says. "I might look like him,
but I'm definitely not in any way like him. I'm very quirky."
Well, both have tattoos. Instead of facial hieroglyphics, Fehr has a tiny ghost on his back. "I wish there was a meaningful
reason for it, but it was just something I did when I was 19." Besides, Fehr has his own admirable qualities.
He's honest. "I like to say I'm 6-foot-2, but I'm 6-foot-1."
He's open-minded. Though he served in the Israeli navy, he has no problem, political or otherwise, with playing an Egyptian.
"I'm honored to be able to play an Arab who is a good guy and a hero. Usually, they are portrayed badly."
He's giving. Fehr arranged for a benefit screening of The Mummy Returns for the Kids Cancer Connection, raising about
$20,000. His wife also supports the charity.
Yes, darn it, he's a newlywed. Fehr met his bride, Sean Connery's producing partner Rhonda Tollefson, when a mutual friend
invited them to see an opera, Samson and Delilah. Speaking of Samson, Fehr chopped his mane shortly after The Mummy Returns
wrapped. Says MacDonald, "More fans were upset over him cutting his hair than about him getting married."
He did it to avoid typecasting. "The look of Ardeth is extremely distinctive. And limiting." He hasn't signed up for
any new projects yet. Depending on the script and whether Sommers would direct, he would consider a third Mummy. As for the
hair, "There are always extensions and wigs. You'll see me with long hair again. It grows quickly."