You’re probably familiar with her voice, but have yet to meet the woman who brought some of the most iconic animated characters to life, like Tommy Pickles (Rugrats) and Buttercup (The Powerpuff Girls). E.G. Daily is truly a triple threat—she's appeared in films, such as Valley Girls, Pee-Wee’s Big Adventure and 31, provided the voices for some of our favorite animated TV characters, competed on The Voice, and even has her own YouTube channel.
Her Campus chatted with E.G. all about how much she impacted our childhoods, how Hollywood’s emphasis on appearances inspired her song “So Pretty" and how she lives her truth, and the unforgettable advice that Blake Shelton gave her during her time on The Voice.
Her Campus: You've had an incredible Hollywood career, what has been your favorite part of it all throughout the years?
E.G. Daily: My favorite part is the variety that I’ve gotten to experience. I’ve gotten to do so many different kinds of things, all in the realm of creativity and mostly with my voice.
HC: Our generation remembers you as the voice of Tommy Pickles and Powerpuff Girl Buttercup—what is it like to know that you've had such an impact on people's childhoods?
ED: It’s so awesome—I really enjoy it now more than ever. I feel like I have more gratitude and am more humbled than ever about it because back when I used to be doing all the episodes—many, many years ago—it was awesome and we were happy to do it and it was fun, but I didn’t realize that decades later, it would’ve made such an impact on so many people’s lives. Today I can actually really absorb how much of an impact it made because of the time that’s passed, and the impact it's still making.
HC: What is it like to step into the shoes of an animated character and bring them to life?
ED: It’s kind of like a dream come true because you get to transform into anything. You can be an inanimate object, you can be a boy, you can be a girl, you can be an old lady, you could be a balloon or a talking toy. With animation, you can be anything, there’s no limit—it’s pretty incredible. You get to go into the fantasy of things but even bigger than, let’s say, a Sci-Fi picture. It can go anywhere.
HC: Cartoon Network created an #EMPOWERPUFF internship program which allows talented writers, illustrators, video editors and graphic designers to have a chance to create content for The Powerpuff Girls—what are your thoughts on it?
ED: I think this is awesome and it’s what we’re supposed to be doing. I think with everything artistic, we’re supposed to use it as a messenger piece to help empower and teach people. It's so important that we seize opportunities to use popular characters and popular TV shows to influence people, because that’s what we’re supposed to be doing. It is just beautiful and makes me proud to be part of The Powerpuff Girls project.
HC: In a time of female empowerment, do you feel it's important to have shows like The Powerpuff Girls to inspire young girls and help them believe that they are strong and capable of doing anything they want?
ED: Yeah, absolutely! I mean, we’ve come a long way—women have come a long way.. girl power! How perfect is it to have these tiny little things become these role models and superheroes? It just goes to show you that it is possible for anyone of any size, of any demographic, boy or girl, any race, any religion, for anyone to make a powerful impact. We all have our own Powerpuff superpowers and who knows what each of ours is, but everybody’s got a superpower, I believe. I think that what’s happening, with the climate of today, is that we’re creating a place for us to really have a voice and make sure that it is mattering. It’s no longer like in the old days where people were just shy and let other people run the show or make the decisions. It just feels so valuable that today, especially with the #MeToo movement, that everyone’s voice matters. We have to use our superpowers and be fearless and fierce so that you can make a difference on the planet.
HC: You have two daughters, what is one piece of advice you’ve passed down to them?
ED: To listen to their inner voice and make sure they’re paying attention to what it's telling them. The more you listen to your inner voice, the louder it gets. So, if your inner voice is telling you, “I don’t like that person, that person doesn’t feel good, that person feels dangerous…”, pay attention. I really taught my girls to pay attention to their inner voice, even if it’s a random little thing that they might hear. I really encourage them to listen and act on that on it because that voice is so powerful. It’s a subconscious and the more you use it, the more you listen to it, the louder it gets and then your life becomes easier because you don’t waste a lot of time on things that are harmful or weird or strange, or that make you feel uneasy. The more you listen to your inner voice, the bigger it gets.
HC: You recently released a song titled "So Pretty," what was the inspiration behind it?
ED: I was actually writing songs for some film and TV projects with my two writers, and we just came together and we wrote. That was the first song I had written with this team of writers and once we got done writing it—it was really quick, it probably had been written in an hour—I just felt so strongly about that message, like, “Oh, God, this message feels really important to me,” and they [the writers] kind of let me run with it. They were really great for listening to me. I said, “There’s a lot of objectifying. A lot of girls nowadays are trying to make their booties bigger and their boobs bigger and their lips bigger and their face bigger, and there’s just so much self-objectifying.” And I’m guilty too, like I’ve done some fillers and I’m all about wanting to look good, just like the rest of us. My daughters are really into the beauty world and fashion.
But sadly, on the other side of that, there’s so much pressure to look perfect. Like, with selfies and the selfie filters, that we can’t possibly be an unfiltered person. And, there needs to be some embracing of imperfection and embracing of your genuine beauty, which is more beautiful than anything. Being a kind person is beautiful, being gentle is beautiful, being thoughtful is beautiful, being healthy is beautiful, taking care of your insides is beautiful, self-care, self-love, that’s all beautiful, and the word ‘beautiful’ is not just for the outside. It’s a bottomless pit if you try to look good on the outside because we’re all gonna get older. I know for myself, I’ve had top makeup artists and hair people and wardrobe people all working on me at one time for a project and I was feeling sad in that moment, let’s say, and I couldn’t even feel how beautiful they were making me look on the outside at that moment. And so, writing that song just reminds me of those times when I realized like, you have to fill yourself up from the inside to feel your beauty. And then, you’ll feel how beautiful you are on the outside. But, it doesn’t start on the outside necessarily.
HC: You were on The Voice a while back and got to work with Blake Shelton. What was it like being on Team Blake? Did he give you any memorable advice?
ED: Yeah, he did actually! It was kind of like a dream because I remember watching The Voice and I remember my sister used to watch it religiously and she was like, “Oh, I’m watching my show, The Voice!” and I go, “What is that?” and she goes, “It’s a cool show about singers.” And I watched it and I loved how it had nothing to do with about how anybody looked. It has nothing to do with it, so it kind of ties into a lot of what I talk about, like going for the talent, the beauty, the good health. Then, when I was actually watching that show, I remember watching it, thinking, “Huh, if I was ever on that show, I would want to be on Team Blake because he’s so funny and a goofball!” And then, cut to the end of getting on that show, which is pretty remarkable. They say be careful what you wish for, but it happened. I learned so much on that show, it was a great experience. What I learned from him [Blake] was he said, “I never know what you’re gonna do, you do things different all the time," which is kind of how I am. I sort of go with the flow a lot, and I’m pretty spontaneous and I never know what is gonna come out of my mouth sometimes, which is scary, in a good way. But I remember him saying that and, “I also want you to practice being consistent. If you’re gonna do it that way, do it that way again the second time too, so you have a way to get back to that place," and that was a really good message.