Once again, a Trek fan from the ranks of pro wrestlers made a Star Trek appearance when Paul “Big Show” Wight turned up as the first live-action male Orion ever heard, a Slaver, in Enterprise’s “Borderland.”
Duane “The Rock” Johnson had played a gladiator-gamer in Voyager’s “Tsunkatse,” of course, but here there was more than stunt casting at work. Big Show’s appearance had a definite commercial tie-in for network UPN since it was also the network of the Smackdown! series brand of World Wrestling Entertainment (WWE) from 1999-2006.
Wight, a six-time world champion since his pro debut in 1995 and once billed as “The World’s Largest Athlete,” was born in 1972 in Aiken, S.C. As with other famous large athletes, he suffered from the endocrine disorder acromegaly but had surgery in the 1990s to stop the effects and played high school and college basketball. Bent on expanding his career into legit acting, his screen credits also include The Waterboy, Knucklehead (his first comedy lead) and guest spots on USA’s Royal Pains and Burn Notice.