TNG, DS9, & Rainn Rock Vegas
Star Trek Las Vegas brought out the big guns on Friday, as Day Three of the mega-event featured Jonathan Frakes, Marina Sirtis, Michael Dorn, Gates McFadden, Rainn Wilson and more, as well as a memorable Smithsonian panel and a cool auction. And let’s not forget the Klingons. StarTrek.com soaked it all in and is here with highlights…
Ira Steven Behr, James Darren, Nicole de Boer, Chase Masterson and Andy Robinson participated in a nostalgic panel that continued STLV’s celebration of DS9’s 25th anniversary.
“My first definite defining moment was my very first scene that I had to do,” de Boer recalled. “I was nervous, but not as nervous as you would think. I was very prepared and excited for it. I remember thinking, ‘I’m going to remember this moment.”
Andrew Robinson had one complaint about his DS9 experience. Looking right at Behr, he said, “Why wasn’t I in the baseball episode? That’s my beef!”
“I would have liked to have had a love interest,” Darren noted. “Just a little fling. Anything.”
Explaining the process of writing DS9, Behr stated, “We wrote the episodes for ourselves. We had to like them. We had to believe in them.”
Masterson revealed that she wished Leeta exhibited more guts and a bit more of an edge, but she loved Leeta’s passion and her love for Rom.
Later in the day, fans were treated to a sneak peek of What We Left Behind, the upcoming documentary from Ira Steven Behr and David Zappone. The sneak peek was followed by detailed panel conversation with Q&A from fans.
Avery Brooks has not participated in it, at least not on camera, nor will he. “Avery is done,” Behr noted. “He’s said what he had to say about Deep Space Nine.”
The TNG Crew Takes the Stage
The first TNG panel of the day brought together Gates McFadden, Michael Dorn and Denise Crosby, who came out on stage dancing and in great spirits.
McFadden had a message for Trek fans: “Every year, it’s amazing that you guys come out. And you all say thank you to us. And every year I meet more people that went into the medical field. So, thank you.”
Dorn arrived at TNG a little late in the game. “They had been working for almost two weeks,” he recounted. “And then I just showed up on set.”
“I went to school for journalism,” Crosby shared. “I really wanted to be a broadcast journalist.”
A special moment occurred when Beth Toussaint, who’d played Yar’s younger sister, Ishara, and was at STLV as a guest, joined Crosby on stage. Applause reverberated in the main room as the two ladies shared a hug.
The second TNG panel of the day was all about the Imzadi. Marina Sirtis and Jonathan Frakes still retain the chemistry they shared for years as Troi and Riker. It was apparent from the moment Frakes walked through the audience screaming, "I love you, Imzadi!” as he trekked to the stage.
“My favorite director of all time,” Sirtis declared Frakes. “He’s a force of nature and he gets it.”
“I didn’t know (early on),” Frakes admitted, “that Star Trek was the cultural phenomenon that it is.”
Fans went just a little bonkers when Jason Isaacs ran onto the stage to surprise Frakes. The two men shared a warm embrace, prompting Isaacs to joke, “This is a private moment. Look away!”
Rainn Wilson's First Star Trek Convention
Star Trek’s new Harry Mudd, Rainn Wilson made his STLV debut. The son of a sci-fi writer, a huge genre fan and a guy who asked to be on Discovery, the actor was in his element.
“This is like Galaxy Quest come to life!” Wilson exclaimed. “Galaxy Quest was my first movie.”
Wilson shared his eagerness to work on the upcoming Star Trek: Short Treks installment that he’ll direct and star in as Mudd. “It’s fantastic,” he enthused. “The script they sent me, this writer from Rick & Morty wrote it. It’s really funny, but in a twisted way. I get to direct it, too.”
Star Trek’s original Chekov, Walter Koenig, looked and sounded great as he paced the stage and answered questions. He talked about his career, Chekov’s accent, the character’s jokey “chauvinism,” and more.
“My mail was, and I say this without hyperbole, exclusively positive, and it was from kids,” Koenig noted. “Kids were writing to me on lined paper, with pencil. That was the group I was supposed to appeal to, and we succeeded in accomplishing that.”
Robert O’Reilly, J.G. Hertzler and Gwynyth Walsh joined forces, but not as themselves… or not quite themselves. Instead, they stomped the stage as Gowron, Martok and B’Etor, rousing the crowd and having a good ol’ time.
To the fan who questioned who’s the better fighter, males or females, B’Etor bellowed, “Do you even have to ask… HUMAN!”
Martok had a question of his own… “Have you ever tried to catch a frog with a bat’leth?”
And then came a “You should have been here” moment. Mary Chieffo, the new Klingon in town as L’Rell on Discovery, surprised the Klingons and the audience, and joined in on the panel. Though she was in human form this day, she did sport a bat’leth necklace.
Star Trek composer Michael Giacchino took the stage in the DeForest Kelley Theater to kick off an auction of a MyCherryTree Borg Cube PC signed by him, J.J. Abrams, LeVar Burton and several other Trek celebrities. Contributions will be donated to Education Through Music-Los Angeles, whose mission is to promote and provide music in disadvantaged schools as part of the core curriculum in order to enhance students’ academic achievement and creative and overall development. The auction is still going, so visit MyCherryTree.com to place your bid or stop by the MyCherryTree booth in the vendors' room.
As with Days One and Two, there was tons more to see, hear and experience, and StarTrek.com documented it with some of our favorite photos of the day…
And the Keepsakes Shall Lead
Hallmark’s Christine Taylor and Kevin Dilmore gave fans a guided tour through Hallmark’s Trek products for 2018.
They even teased 2019 Trek products.
Margaret Weitekamp is not only Curator at the Smithsonian National Air & Space Museum, but she’s created the Smithsonian’s new online course, “Star Trek: Inspiring Culture & Technology."
Weitekamp talked about the course in detail during her panel with the help of some of fans' favorite members of the Star Trek family: Denise and Mike Okuda, Michael Dorn, Adam Nimoy and Terry Farrell.
Star Trek: The Cruise III
The first two Star Trek cruises were at-sea hits and JT Watters and Joey Fairchild of Entertainment Cruise Productions were on hand to preview Star Trek: The Cruise III, which will set sail in 2019. Fans got a treat when Michael Dorn, Denise Crosby, Gates McFadden, Jonathan Frakes and Ethan Phillips popped in to talk about The Cruise III.
Shakespeare and the Trek-verse
Was the Bard a Shakespeare fans? What Shakespearean play was most Trek-like?
Mary Chief team-eth-ed up with Amy Imhoff, Anika Dave, Brooke Wilkins and Grace Moore in a fun-filled panel trying to answer those questions and more.
Four of fandom’s best cosplayers – Joanie Brosas, Darrell Phillips, Michael Rough and Brooke Wilkins – revealed how they discovered cosplay, described some of their best creations, and shared advice for aspiring cosplayers. Check out some of our favorite cosplays of the day below: