General Question

keobooks's avatar

Anyone know the best strategy for finding actors who played multiple roles across different Star Trek episodes?

Asked by keobooks (12521 points ) February 8th, 2012

I just got finished re-watching the entire DS9 series. It inspired me to go through the TNG series. Every now and then on the show, I’ll see actors playing bit parts or extras who ended up being featured characters later on. I just saw an episode where an unnamed Romulan was very obviously played by the same actor who was Gul Dukat. on DS9. I see several actors being recycled all over the series. It was very cool to see Chief O’Brien on the pilot episode, but he was just some random bridge officer.

I love noticing and seeing stuff like this. I tried Googling to see if there was a comprehensive list of recycled actors on the show. The closest thing I could find was a dead link to some long gone Star Trek Wiki. I could find lots of quizes I could take, but I find that too tedious to go through the quiz just to see the answer.

I also saw some links to Star Trek boards and there were threads several years old where people were talking about this subject. But because I’m not a really rabid fan, I couldn’t follow some of the conversations well. I don’t know the names of actors or minor characters at all, so seeing “Fred Smith played Vignot in EP 355 and then he was Wooboo in EP 483” I would like something a little more explanatory – maybe with pictures or links so some doofus like me who has no idea who Fred Smith is, but I recognize his face from some other movies or shows could see him and see that while I didn’t remember the name Vignot, I could remember the episode with the two headed green furry guy who tried to eat Data’s cat. (completely fictional information, FYI)

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23 Answers

keobooks's avatar

Found it. It turns out the page I thought was a dead link was just down for maintenance. Should I take the question down?

mrentropy's avatar

Go to http://www.imdb.com search for a Star Trek episode you know you saw the actor in, then find his/her name in the cast list and click on it. Scroll through all the stuff that person did and it should show which episode of which series they were in.

tedd's avatar

Memory Alpha. It’s like star trek wiki. You can go to a characters page, click on the actors name under their photo, and it will show you everyone they’ve ever played.

For example here’s Marc Alaimo (aka Gul Dukat) http://en.memory-alpha.org/wiki/Marc_Alaimo

zensky's avatar

I was going to suggest what @mrentropy did. It’s always fun to IMDb someone – and yes, the site warrants a verb imho.

:-)

JilltheTooth's avatar

DON’T TAKE THIS Q DOWN!!!!! I love it too much… Thanks, guys, I’ve been wondering this.

keobooks's avatar

OK, After watching many many episodes of DS9 back to back, I am TOTALLY SHOCKED that Brunt and Weyoun were played by the same guy. I had NO IDEA. I never would have guessed.

JilltheTooth's avatar

@keobooks: I know, how cute is that? KatawaGrey and I are serious Trek geeks. All this stuff tickles us no end.

Buttonstc's avatar

I’ll second or third imdb.com

This is what Roger Ebert has used long before most people knew of its existence. Except he pays for the “Pro” version.

Jeruba's avatar

I’d go straight to IMDb.

tedd's avatar

IMDB is good, but not nearly as good as Memory Alpha.

You can literally type in the characters name and it will tell you everyone that actor has ever played on every Star Trek series.

keobooks's avatar

Just so you know, I didn’t want to go the IMDB route because it’s great for many things, but not when you are kind of vague on where to go. It would have been easy to find out all of the characters played by Marc Alaimo, for instance, because I knew who Gul Dukat was and I knew I recognized him in some bit roles.

However, I would have had no idea that Brunt and Weyoun were both played by the same man because I wouldn’t have been specifically looking for either of those actors.

It also would be a pain looking for actors who played nothing but minor characters by poring through episode by episode and going down all the names and each person on each episode.

IMDB is awesome, but it’s not a tool for all things. Thanks for the suggestion though

dappled_leaves's avatar

I’m with @JilltheTooth. I’d like to be able to find this page again. :)

dappled_leaves's avatar

Things I feel compelled to mention: Ethan Phillips (who played Neelix in Voyager) was a Ferengi on STNG. And there’s a weird connection between STNG and LA Law. A lot of people from that show ended up on Star Trek for some reason.

keobooks's avatar

Ethan Phillips and Rene Auberjounois were also in the sitcom Benson together. I had a babysitter obsessed with that show so I was excited when I saw them both on each of their shows for the first time.

JilltheTooth's avatar

OK, seriously geek-ish moment that I will only admit to strangers on the internet. There is also a freakish connection between all things Star Trek and the old soap Ryan’s Hope.

AstroChuck's avatar

Just checking in to say that next to the original Star Trek, DS9 is my favorite. Deep Space 9 is the most underrated of all the series in the Star Trek universe in my opinion.

keobooks's avatar

@AstroChuck I totally agree. Except for the fact that their first season was AWFUL, it was incredible. I think the thing it had that TNG completely lacked was realistic development of the characters and their relationships with each other. It also had some really nice story arcs.

AstroChuck's avatar

@keobooks- Without a doubt it’s because the show had such great character development. Entire episodes often focused on one particular character and you really got the sense you knew who they were and how they became that personality.

JilltheTooth's avatar

I also liked the fact that they couldn’t just leave. They had to deal with the stuff. DS9 was my fave, too…

Buttonstc's avatar

I absolutely loved DS9 (the earlier years more than the last few which had all the special effects space battles).

Because of the character development, this was my favorite of the ST series. But Babylon 5 was tops of all time for me for similar reasons, character development.

But with both space stations, one could imagine actually living there in reality. That’s how complete was the world they created.

Loved them both.

And I STILL wish I could spend my remaining years happily retired on Bajor :)

keobooks's avatar

I need to watch B5 again. I really liked that one back in the day. I loved Ambassador Molari.

keobooks's avatar

Oh speaking of B5, I just saw a rerun of TNG and there was a Romulan played by the same actor who was Ambassador J’Kar.

Buttonstc's avatar

Yes. Andreas Katsulas. A marvelously experienced thespian formerly noted for Shakesperean roles. Quality shows.

I loved J’Kar. Eloquently portrayed the plight of his people.

He was one of my favorite noble characters in addition to Kosh.

Did you know that the venal Molari was played by the same guy who played the weaselly snitch named Syd from NYPD Blue. He had quite a lot of interaction with the Dennis Franz character.

I never realized it until I saw the actors name pop up in a Blue rerun. (or maybe it was the previous series with Franz and Daniel Travanti. Not sure.)

But it was definitely sniveling Syd, whichever cop show it was. Takes some skill to portray flawed characters and make them more than merely caricature.

Lando Molari was a piece of work indeed !

Oh how much I miss B5. Haven’t thought about it or Bajor in a while.

Nostalgia lane.

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