Wil Wheaton was already a veteran of cinema and television when, at the age of fifteen, he was cast as boy genius Wesley Crusher on Star Trek: The Next Generation. His most prominent early role was that of Gordie LaChance, the central character in the film Stand By Me. Wheaton left TNG after four seasons, but returned for four additional episodes before the series ended its seven-year run. He went on to appear in guest shots on a variety of TV series, including Diagnosis Murder, CSI, Numb3rs, Criminal Minds, Leverage, and episodes of the gamer-oriented web series The Guild. He has had even more ongoing voice roles in shows like Ben 10: Alien Force, Teen Titans, Naruto, Legion of Super Heroes, and Kurokami. Ironically, although the character of Wesley Crusher was dogged by criticism from a small group of Trekkers who didn’t like his character, Wheaton has emerged as a strong voice for the so-called “geek/nerd” community, thanks to his highly popular weblog and spinoff books, convention appearances, podcasts and active involvement in the computer gaming community.