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John32070

The women who could have been Janeway

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One thing that always had me curious in a "what if?" way concerns the supposed short list of actresses they were considering for Janeway besides Bujold and Mulgrew. If memory serves the list included; Susan Gibney, Sean Young, Lindsey Wagner, Kate Jackson, and I think Marriette Hartley was even considered at the beginning but then dropped. 

I think Hartley would have been a little old by then to have been in the role (but so was Bujold but they went with her so...), I know Berman and co. liked Gibney, but I think already having played two different characters in Trek would have been a bit much for me, I have to admit I haven't seen that much of Sean Young to really have an opinion and to be honest the one thing that stands out about her is the weird story of how she tried to snag the role of Catwoman. Wagner and Jackson I think would have been interesting. To be honest, after watching her shot scenes, I don't get why they originally chose Bujold over any of these others. I think it turned out fine in any case.

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One thing that always had me curious in a "what if?" way concerns the supposed short list of actresses they were considering for Janeway besides Bujold and Mulgrew. If memory serves the list included; Susan Gibney, Sean Young, Lindsey Wagner, Kate Jackson, and I think Marriette Hartley was even considered at the beginning but then dropped. 

I think Hartley would have been a little old by then to have been in the role (but so was Bujold but they went with her so...), I know Berman and co. liked Gibney, but I think already having played two different characters in Trek would have been a bit much for me, I have to admit I haven't seen that much of Sean Young to really have an opinion and to be honest the one thing that stands out about her is the weird story of how she tried to snag the role of Catwoman. Wagner and Jackson I think would have been interesting. To be honest, after watching her shot scenes, I don't get why they originally chose Bujold over any of these others. I think it turned out fine in any case.

I remember reading in an old CFQ magazine (or was it Starlog?) that Erin Gray ("Buck Rogers") was up for the role... 

erin_gray_buck_rogers_white_outfit_smile

I don't know about anyone else but the prospect of a VGR that theoretically could've had both Erin Gray AND Jeri Ryan is a bit too much for me to handle.

JeriRyan.jpg

Who knows?  VGR could've wound up being my favorite ST series...  or it could've been the cause of my premature death.  :laugh:

fred-sanford-heart-attack-o.gif

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Now that you mention it I think I heard that too. 

I seem to remember Berman/Piller/Taylor really wanted Gibney but the studio axed the idea as she was still pretty much an unknown. Of course, I think a good many Trek fans had no idea who Bujold was despite her acting and awards pedigree. Aside from Coma and Earthquake I think many (especially Trek fans) would be hard pressed to know her from anything else. And it's sad to say, but her 2 day/2 scene stint as Janeway is probably what she's most known for over the last 20 years.

I even had to think for a bit who Mulgrew was at first, as the only thing I'd seen her in was Remo Williams.

I think Kate Jackson would have an interesting choice. I saw her in a pilot for CBS that wasn't picked up (back when the networks showed their failed pilots over the summer which I still wished they'd do) in a drama where she was a small town Sheriff and I was really impressed with her playing something different than her Charlie's Angels or Scarecrow and Mrs King role.

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I just had to chuckle at the studio's idea of "not hiring someone who is an unknown"... I seem to remember a certain "unknown British Shakespearean actor" who did a fairly good job as a starship captain. ;)

Not sure if Susan Gibney would have worked out, though... unless, of course, they had had "Captain Leah Brahms" (difficult since Brahms wasn't even in Starfleet). On the other hand, they also created Tom Paris and refused to ever even mention that he looked a LOT like a certain Nick Locarno...

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True. I know Stewart had been in a few things (Dune for example) but he was still an unknown quality in 1987. 

To be honest, Bakkula was probably the most well known lead in a Trek series when hired.

Heck, did anyone know who Chris Pine was before Trek 09? I didn't.

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I just had to chuckle at the studio's idea of "not hiring someone who is an unknown"... I seem to remember a certain "unknown British Shakespearean actor" who did a fairly good job as a starship captain. ;)

Not sure if Susan Gibney would have worked out, though... unless, of course, they had had "Captain Leah Brahms" (difficult since Brahms wasn't even in Starfleet). On the other hand, they also created Tom Paris and refused to ever even mention that he looked a LOT like a certain Nick Locarno...

^
True.   And he even acted a lot like Nick Locarno... 
:laugh:

True. I know Stewart had been in a few things (Dune for example) but he was still an unknown quality in 1987. 

To be honest, Bakkula was probably the most well known lead in a Trek series when hired.

Heck, did anyone know who Chris Pine was before Trek 09? I didn't.

True.

The advantage of an unknown is that audiences have no prior perceptions when they see them in a role.   Mark Hamill was Luke Skywalker to my generation, just as Chris Reeve was Superman.   And as much as it pains me to say it, Erin Gray would've had the stigma of "Buck Rogers" to deal with.   Just as Lindsay Wagner (a terrific actress) would've no doubt brought similar "Bionic Woman" baggage to the role.  

Not their fault, but science fiction roles seem to be especially prone to typecasting.

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My pick would have been Lindsay Wagner or Lynda Carter because they are iconic actress thanks to Bionic Woman and Wonder Woman. Plus I love their acting and welll................they are still beatiful and classy ladies.

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10400357_10208754496358958_7624591095619

Nothing agains Kate Mulgrew of course, she's great too

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My pick would have been Lindsay Wagner or Lynda Carter because they are iconic actress thanks to Bionic Woman and Wonder Woman. Plus I love their acting and welll................they are still beatiful and classy ladies.

12795340_10208753287168729_4045404784137

10400357_10208754496358958_7624591095619

Nothing agains Kate Mulgrew of course, she's great too

Erin Gray's no slouch either, Gus... ;)

202f74b396c10a47eeecfe2bfdba0da2.jpg

 

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I have to agree on that one, Sehlat.

I still love the first season Wilma Deering, blonde and ready to take charge, perfetct for a Starfleet captain.

13466041_10209785981865451_2133786243191

You damn lucky space vampire !

13501678_10209785982145458_1155849335440

Gus

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I have to agree on that one, Sehlat.

I still love the first season Wilma Deering, blonde and ready to take charge, perfetct for a Starfleet captain.

13466041_10209785981865451_2133786243191

You damn lucky space vampire !

13501678_10209785982145458_1155849335440

Gus

I liked her natural brunette locks, too. 

erin_gray_buck_rogers_white_outfit_smile

But I hated the changes to her character in S2; she went from a tough, take-charge colonel of Earth's defenses to the Searcher's cruise director...

MV5BZDdlMDY0OGEtMjA5MC00MjlhLWI3ZWUtMjll

Such a shame... would've been nice to see Wilma 'redeemed' with Gray in command of the USS Voyager.  At least she got to be a Starfleet commodore in the Star Trek Continues' fan film, "Lolani." 

stc02-admiral.jpg

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To echo John32070's post upthread, I think Kate Jackson might actually have been a great choice. It may even be the same TV movie he's referring to, but I saw her in something once that made me think she was a hell of an actress - it's just that the Charlie's Angel association followed her around. I suppose the same would've been true for Lindsay Wagner or Erin Gray and their most famous roles. I actually think Wagner, had she wished to or been allowed, could've gone on to greater and greater things. She was/is an actor of enormous charm and ability, not to mention an amazing looking woman. 

Having seen the Bujold footage, if it was a toss-up between Mulgrew and Bujold, they absolutely made the right choice. I've never really liked the way Janeway was written (massively inconsistently) but you get the sense that Mulgrew did what she could with the role. 

Edited by Robin Bland

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To echo John32070's post upthread, I think Kate Jackson might actually have been a great choice. It may even be the same TV movie he's referring to, but I saw her in something once that made me think she was a hell of an actress - it's just that the Charlie's Angel association followed her around. I suppose the same would've been true for Lindsay Wagner or Erin Gray and their most famous roles. I actually think Wagner, had she wished to or been allowed, could've gone on to greater and greater things. She was/is an actor of enormous charm and ability, not to mention an amazing looking woman. 

Having seen the Bujold footage, if it was a toss-up between Mulgrew and Bujold, they absolutely made the right choice. I've never really liked the way Janeway was written (massively inconsistently) but you get the sense that Mulgrew did what she could with the role. 

I agree with you on Bujold v. Mulgrew; IMO, the choice was self-evident. 

As for Kate Jackson?  That's another interesting choice.   I only remember her from reruns of "Charlie's Angels" (hey; I had a Cheryl Ladd crush... guilty!) and a 1981 movie called "Making Love" (a melodrama love triangle between a man, his wife and his gay lover; extremely dated and tacky by today's standards).   She had acting chops in both, and I could've easily seen her dishing out some of Janeway's patented sass.  

But again; I don't necessarily think any of these actresses were better choices than Mulgrew (esp. with how the part was written); just different.  

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To echo John32070's post upthread, I think Kate Jackson might actually have been a great choice. It may even be the same TV movie he's referring to, but I saw her in something once that made me think she was a hell of an actress - it's just that the Charlie's Angel association followed her around. I suppose the same would've been true for Lindsay Wagner or Erin Gray and their most famous roles. I actually think Wagner, had she wished to or been allowed, could've gone on to greater and greater things. She was/is an actor of enormous charm and ability, not to mention an amazing looking woman. 

Having seen the Bujold footage, if it was a toss-up between Mulgrew and Bujold, they absolutely made the right choice. I've never really liked the way Janeway was written (massively inconsistently) but you get the sense that Mulgrew did what she could with the role. 

I agree with you on Bujold v. Mulgrew; IMO, the choice was self-evident. 

As for Kate Jackson?  That's another interesting choice.   I only remember her from reruns of "Charlie's Angels" (hey; I had a Cheryl Ladd crush... guilty!) and a 1981 movie called "Making Love" (a melodrama love triangle between a man, his wife and his gay lover; extremely dated and tacky by today's standards).   She had acting chops in both, and I could've easily seen her dishing out some of Janeway's patented sass.  

But again; I don't necessarily think any of these actresses were better choices than Mulgrew (esp. with how the part was written); just different.  

I think Voyager's real problem was behind-the-scenes, in the writer's and production rooms. It became a generic show so, so quickly, and a different actor couldn't have entirely saved the character of Janeway anymore than Mulgrew could. It's interesting to speculate on these things, of course - I suspect Wagner would've had a hell of a lot of clout having had one very major popular SF hit to her name, so perhaps that would've influenced the writing process more. A shake-up of that dept. was what was needed. Voyager really had a boring crew and captain - aside from Seven, the Doctor and occasionally Tuvok, it was dullsville. I really wanted to like Tom, but they even emasculated him right after the pilot. B'ellana was also potentially great, but massively watered down in execution across seven years, in no way due to the actresses' efforts. 

This was down to the writing and the sense that even though these people were supposedly in an extraordinary situation, even by 24th century standards, their characters just weren't allowed to develop. Wouldn't it have been awful if Wagner, Carter or Gray had been cast, and had left after only say, three years? On the other hand, maybe that's what would've shaken things up some... We'll never know. 

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To echo John32070's post upthread, I think Kate Jackson might actually have been a great choice. It may even be the same TV movie he's referring to, but I saw her in something once that made me think she was a hell of an actress - it's just that the Charlie's Angel association followed her around. I suppose the same would've been true for Lindsay Wagner or Erin Gray and their most famous roles. I actually think Wagner, had she wished to or been allowed, could've gone on to greater and greater things. She was/is an actor of enormous charm and ability, not to mention an amazing looking woman. 

Having seen the Bujold footage, if it was a toss-up between Mulgrew and Bujold, they absolutely made the right choice. I've never really liked the way Janeway was written (massively inconsistently) but you get the sense that Mulgrew did what she could with the role. 

I agree with you on Bujold v. Mulgrew; IMO, the choice was self-evident. 

As for Kate Jackson?  That's another interesting choice.   I only remember her from reruns of "Charlie's Angels" (hey; I had a Cheryl Ladd crush... guilty!) and a 1981 movie called "Making Love" (a melodrama love triangle between a man, his wife and his gay lover; extremely dated and tacky by today's standards).   She had acting chops in both, and I could've easily seen her dishing out some of Janeway's patented sass.  

But again; I don't necessarily think any of these actresses were better choices than Mulgrew (esp. with how the part was written); just different.  

I think Voyager's real problem was behind-the-scenes, in the writer's and production rooms. It became a generic show so, so quickly, and a different actor couldn't have entirely saved the character of Janeway anymore than Mulgrew could. It's interesting to speculate on these things, of course - I suspect Wagner would've had a hell of a lot of clout having had one very major popular SF hit to her name, so perhaps that would've influenced the writing process more. A shake-up of that dept. was what was needed. Voyager really had a boring crew and captain - aside from Seven, the Doctor and occasionally Tuvok, it was dullsville. I really wanted to like Tom, but they even emasculated him right after the pilot. B'ellana was also potentially great, but massively watered down in execution across seven years, in no way due to the actresses' efforts. 

This was down to the writing and the sense that even though these people were supposedly in an extraordinary situation, even by 24th century standards, their characters just weren't allowed to develop. Wouldn't it have been awful if Wagner, Carter or Gray had been cast, and had left after only say, three years? On the other hand, maybe that's what would've shaken things up some... We'll never know. 

^
That's true... and we would've had Capt. Chakotay.   Yikes.  
:S

Nothing against Beltran personally, but Chakotay (the character) was the dullest XO in the history of Star Trek. 

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Beltran filmed his role as Captain Chakotay for the fan film STAR TREK RENEGADES : REQUIEN in past few weeks. Its so sad that we may never see this final episode. The folks at RENEGADES are really good people ad love their work on these fan films because they love Star Trek - sigh.

Gus

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Beltran filmed his role as Captain Chakotay for the fan film STAR TREK RENEGADES : REQUIEN in past few weeks. Its so sad that we may never see this final episode. The folks at RENEGADES are really good people ad love their work on these fan films because they love Star Trek - sigh.

Gus

Yeah, these new 'guidelines' for fan films are basically a punch in the face to ST fans and would-be filmmakers.   I can only imagine if the studio was this prudish regarding fan efforts back in the '70s (when fan-made conventions, 8mm fan films, fanfic and fanzines were the only things keeping ST alive).

ST would be a TV historical footnote by now...

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It will be, in a few years....................I think

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It will be, in a few years....................I think

No, it's too big an entertainment to ever become culturally irrelevant again.   Especially with a new movie and new series coming soon... 

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I am not at all optimistic about BEYOND (whose storyline was spoiled in the trailers) and STAR TREK 2017 (I dont like Bryan Fulller and Kurtzman as writers/producers) but lets be honest, at this point, who cares ?

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I am not at all optimistic about BEYOND (whose storyline was spoiled in the trailers) and STAR TREK 2017 (I dont like Bryan Fulller and Kurtzman as writers/producers) but lets be honest, at this point, who cares ?

Um..... all of us here on this Star Trek site (?).  ;)

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Oh right, I forgot about that. LOL

Anyway, I will read the reviews first on this one, plus the comments post here, before I make my mind about this movie.

Gus

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I am not at all optimistic about BEYOND (whose storyline was spoiled in the trailers) and STAR TREK 2017 (I dont like Bryan Fulller and Kurtzman as writers/producers) but lets be honest, at this point, who cares ?

You don't know what your missing when it comes to Fuller!

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I am not at all optimistic about BEYOND (whose storyline was spoiled in the trailers) and STAR TREK 2017 (I dont like Bryan Fulller and Kurtzman as writers/producers) but lets be honest, at this point, who cares ?

You don't know what your missing when it comes to Fuller!

I have to agree; and there's also Nick Meyer involved too.    That's gotta be cause for some excitement...

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I am not at all optimistic about BEYOND (whose storyline was spoiled in the trailers) and STAR TREK 2017 (I dont like Bryan Fulller and Kurtzman as writers/producers) but lets be honest, at this point, who cares ?

You don't know what your missing when it comes to Fuller!

I have to agree; and there's also Nick Meyer involved too.    That's gotta be cause for some excitement...

Excitement is no term for my feelings ... it could well become the very best team any Star Trek series ever had. Each name that was dropped shows so much talent and fandom "street cred" it's bordering on ridiculous.

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I am not at all optimistic about BEYOND (whose storyline was spoiled in the trailers) and STAR TREK 2017 (I dont like Bryan Fulller and Kurtzman as writers/producers) but lets be honest, at this point, who cares ?

You don't know what your missing when it comes to Fuller!

I have to agree; and there's also Nick Meyer involved too.    That's gotta be cause for some excitement...

Excitement is no term for my feelings ... it could well become the very best team any Star Trek series ever had. Each name that was dropped shows so much talent and fandom "street cred" it's bordering on ridiculous.

It really feels like they're making this one for us this time...

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