Hunter Deno chatted about playing Amelia Jones, the Pink Ranger on Power Rangers Dino Fury. It is the 28th season of the popular franchise.
As of 2021, Orlando, Florida native Hunter Deno has starred on Power Rangers Dino Fury, the second season of which will be streamed on Netflix. On the show, the latest in the long-running and beloved Power Rangers franchise, Hunter plays the role of “Amelia Jones”, the Pink Ranger alongside a cast of four other actors.
Read on below for Hunter’s new interview with Courageous Nerd all about her role on Power Rangers, acting beginnings and more.
Welcome, Hunter and thank you for taking the time to speak with me today.
Hunter Deno (HD): Thank you for having me.
Fans of Power Rangers Dino Fury will of course recognise you as Amelia Jones, the Pink Ranger. Going back in time, how did your journey into acting first start?
HD: I actually booked my first commercial on my first birthday. My mom put me in the business when I was a baby. I grew up doing commercials because my hometown had a lot of them. When I got to 17-18, I really wanted to try TV and Film and went to Atlanta for a little bit. In 2019, I went to LA because I was like, “I need to push further.” And, here I am.
Dino Fury is the latest in a long line of Power Rangers adaptations. How familiar were you with the prior series and was it daunting to become part of a well-established legacy?
HD: I definitely watched them growing up. I don’t think I was that fan that watched it every time it came out. I definitely knew what it was and I definitely ran around the neighbourhood playing Power Rangers. I feel like that’s a rite of passage as a child. It’s quite strange, it still hasn’t hit me that I’m a part of this huge legacy that is known worldwide. Especially to be the Pink Ranger is quite iconic.
On the show, your character Amelia is a journalist with a paranormal obssession. How similar or different is Amelia compared to other characters you have played?
HD: I don’t think I’ve played a character that has been that in-depth yet. This is quite my first full on character to actually deep dive into. It’s a little different to compare them but I don’t think I’ve had a character so driven as Amelia is. She’s so strong-headed and when she puts her mind to something, she definitely goes for it.
While in battle, Amelia wears the Pink Ranger suit. In previous iterations, that has represented being a ‘girly girl’ member of the team. Would you say Amelia upholds or defies this stereotype?
HD: I definitely think she has that side of her that is really girly. I definitely think that she is up on the fashion trend, gets ready every morning and that kind of thing. I do think she has that time where she doesn’t mind getting a little dirty; whether it’s for a story or to beat some monsters’ behind. I don’t think she’s afraid to get to that point but for the most part, she’s pretty girly.
Although the show is usually set in America and features American characters, many of the later seasons have been filmed in New Zealand. How has your own experience of shooting on location there?
HD: I don’t know how many years it’s shot in New Zealand. It’s been quite a long time since they moved everything over to New Zealand. I’ve never really been outside of North America except for the Bahamas. That was 1) really exciting for me because I do want to see the world and 2) it was really a different experience filming for nine months there. There is no COVID or restrictions. Obviously, the culture is different, the people, the time difference. I actually really found myself loving New Zealand and find myself missing it, now that I’m not there.
In your opinion, what makes Dino Fury stand out from other Power Rangers shows?
HD: I can’t really say too much but I do want to say that we are the season of firsts. We have had a lot of firsts and will have a lot of firsts. I think the audience will be very surprised with a lot of things that are coming but in a really good way. It’s really exciting and just really new. I think it’s broadening the idea of the show just a little bit. We’re actually really, really excited for everyone to see.
I don’t necessarily think switching platforms (from Nickelodeon to Netflix) is a major key to the storyline. It’s more so character plots and stuff like that. We have our first female Green Ranger and the first 6th African-American Ranger. A bunch of firsts like that in the actual storyline, rather than in the backside aspect of it.
What is one thing that young actors are surprised by when starting out in the industry?
HD: If it’s a dream of yours, you should really pursue it. It’s something that’s very exciting and I’m all for everyone going for what they want in life, going full force with it. Be yourself, trust yourself, trust the process, don’t get discouraged. For all the No’s, there will be a Yes.
In 2019, I had over one hundred auditions and I think I’ve been through all of it. So like, I’ve booked a role and they cut me twenty-four hours before filming. I’ve booked a role and they cut the entire scene I was in, a week before filming. I’ve been put on hold and released, I’ve shot some stuff and they cut most of it. I’ve been through the thick of it. Don’t get discouraged because that is just the business, it just happens. If it’s something you really want to do, you should just keep going.
When you are not acting, what do you enjoy doing?
HD: I don’t really have too many, like, hobbies. I’m actually about to start getting into archery because I think that’s really cool and I would love to do that for a role. I really like just spending time with my friends and family. I love going to the beach. I have a ranch with cows so I like just going and hanging out with the cows! Anything outdoors really, I love hikes. Hikes are my thing as well.
Aside from Dino Fury, are there any other upcoming projects you can discuss at this time?
HD: Not at the moment. I just got back and haven’t even been home for three weeks. Not yet!
Professionally or personally, what do you hope to accomplish with the rest of 2021?
HD: You know, I haven’t really set a goal list for this year yet. I decided to get new reps when I came back so that’s exciting for me. It means new opportunities. My best friend and I are looking for a house to live together in LA, just little things like that. Spend more quality time with my family, since I was gone for nine months. I’ve got to make up for that. Just work on myself and make sure I’m all good for what’s next.
How would you tease Dino Fury to anyone who is unfamiliar?
HD: There’s so much to our show! Wow, I’m not even really sure how to summarise it, especially with what’s out already. It’s definitely centered around… our Red Ranger Zayto has been woken up after 65 million years. So, we’re definitely going to try to find answers for him. Within finding those answers with him, we also learn to be these Power Rangers and superheroes that protect the city.
Along with finding those answers, we come across all these hardships and obstacles. We always work towards it together and will always try to solve it to our best abilities, as long as we all work together, we’re going to be okay. We find out some pretty juicy stuff later on so, like, I’m really excited for that. I don’t know how to stop the summary at a certain point.
Thanks again for taking the time, Hunter. Take care and stay safe!
HD: Yeah, thank you so much for having me.