Published Jun 14, 2011
Anthony Montgomery Catches Up With the Fans
We dove into the archives for this classic interview, featuring fan questions for Enterprise's Anthony Montgomery.
By StarTrek.com Staff
Anthony Montgomery spent four seasons playing Travis Mayweather on Star Trek: Enterprise. He loved his time on the show, working with his co-stars, developing Mayweather – when given the opportunity – and building a strong, warm relationship with the Star Trek fan base. Enterprise ended in 2005 and Montgomery has spent the years since then concentrating first on his personal life and then on his career. These days, he’s married and a happy father.
Montgomery filled us in on all of that and more during a recent interview in which he answered questions provided almost entirely by you, the readers of StarTrek.com.
StarTrek.com: Where does Enterprise fit into your life at this point?
Anthony Montgomery: It’s been interesting. Just in general for everybody in the business, the industry has not been very kind for the last three or four years. There was a writers’ strike years ago and then an actors’ strike, and it took a while for the industry to right itself. So, instead of jumping more into production at that time, I focused on my personal life, because having work go well and not having anyone to share it with, that’s a very lonely experience. So I didn’t focus as much on going right to the next project as I did making sure that I had my personal life in order. Now I’ve got my wife and my family set, and I’m ready for the next wave.
Enterprise will always be a part of my heart because we became a part of many other people’s hearts and lives over the years. But, when it ended –speaking as an actor– it was literally on to the next job. As an actor, you can’t just rest on your laurels of the wonderful things you did in the past, because you get stuck there. In Hollywood, you’re only as important as the last thing you did. So, being on Enterprise was great, but to a lot of people that was ancient history. We went off the air in 2005, so from 2005 to 2011, that’s a long distance as far as Hollywood goes.
So, for me, being on [VH1's] Single Ladies is great fun and great timing. I’ve also done a graphic novel. I created an animated series years ago. My agent and I went out and pitched it. I got a little resistance; it’s just not easy to break into the animation world. So I’ve had it turned into a graphic novel. I changed the title, because I didn’t want it to be too similar to anything else. It’s going to be called Miles Away. It’ll be a 96-page, full-color graphic novel, created by me and written by me with a very talented writer named Brandon Easton. I have some really talented artists who are doing the renderings. And I’m course to have the first 24 pages done by the end of June. Then my agent and I will be taking those pages out to see about a publishing deal.
How ready were you for more seasons of Enterprise or was it, in its own way, the right time for the show to call it a day?
AM: I personally thought that we had finally found our sea legs, or our space legs, if you will. I thought by season four we’d actually hit a very nice stride. So I thought we would be around for three more seasons and do several movies, and everything. I really felt that after the Xindi arc, after we’d saved the world, that people were really enjoying the two- and three-episode story arcs that the fourth season was composed of.
What did we not get to learn about Mayweather that you wanted to know about him?
AM: Oh, we barely scratched the surface of Travis. I wanted to actually see and meet some of his alien girlfriends. We talked about them, but we never got to see any of them. The one girlfriend that we saw over the 98 episodes was human. I was like, “Wait! I wanted an alien girlfriend.”
Also, I wanted to meet his sister. We had the episode (“Horizon”) where his father passed away, but I remember that we’d talked about Travis having other relatives, having a sister, and her having a husband. I was looking forward to actually learning more about his family. And because we’d done it so quickly in “In a Mirror, Darkly,” I was looking forward to playing Evil Travis again. That would have been a blast, because I think Empress Sato (Linda Park) and Evil Travis were about to run the mirror universe.
Is acting in a sci-fi setting any different from acting in a more realistic setting?
AM: No. Acting is acting. You have to bring truth to the character. You have to find the honesty of the part and the reality of what it is. It just so happens that some reality has you fighting alien monsters and some reality has you fighting the legal department down at the city county building, but acting is just about finding the truth. So, no, to me, there is no difference. If you get into a situation where you say, “It’s a sci-fi show, so I’m not going to ‘act,’” then you take away from what the craft is and get into more, to me, slapstick, and your performance turns a lot campier.
If they’d done a time travel episode that allowed you to play Mayweather on any other Star Trek show, which would you have liked to have been on and why?
AM: Oh, God. Well, I think I would have to say I would have liked to have been on The Original Series. It would have been great to find a way to tie things in so that Travis was directly related to Lt. Uhura (Nichelle Nichols). Maybe Lt. Uhura was somehow my great-grandmother. Nichelle is an icon and, for me, she is the epitome of elegance, which is why I would have wanted to have interacted with her.
And then, because I’m such a Jean-Luc Picard (Patrick Stewart) fan and because I’ve met Patrick and think he’s a wonderful person and ridiculously talented, I’d have loved to have been able to work with him on The Next Generation. Also, because I was a fan of Avery Brooks for so many years on Spencer for Hire, it would have been amazing to have been on Spencer for Hire. I know that he’s Commander Sisko for Star Trek fans, but I never really watched Deep Space Nine, and I was a fan of his long before that. So, for different reasons, for reasons really having nothing to do with Star Trek, I’d have loved to have done some of those different shows.
Scott Bakula recently said that Enterprise was supposed to make the leap from series to films and become the next Star Trek film franchise.
AM: I do remember them saying that they were not going to do movies for Voyager and that as long as the numbers kept getting better, then they did plan on doing movies with our series.
Who from the old days are you still in touch with?
AM: This goes back to actually being on the show, but I’m closest to Dominic (Keating) and I always have been. But I see Scott maybe once a year. My wife and I usually go to his annual Christmas party, and I get to catch up with whomever else I haven’t seen. Dominic and John Billingsley are the two that I speak with most often. Scott and I talk a few times a year, but we just don’t get together as much as we used to. And I see a lot of the people at the conventions, too.
To bring things to a conclusion, what’s happening with your music?
AM: Music is a very cutthroat industry and I did not realize how cutthroat it is until I’d put my album out. But it’s ironic that someone asked that question, because I have a song that will be featured on Single Ladies. I recorded a single and the music supervisor for Single Ladies loved it, and they’re putting my song on the show. It’s called “Stimulation.” It’s a sexy club song. It’s not gratuitous or anything like that. I don’t curse people out and I’m not selling drugs, but it’s a sexy song. I don’t know what episode it’ll be in, but because I know it’ll definitely be on the show, I’ve recorded a video for it. It’ll probably be a couple of more weeks, and then the fans should be on the lookout for it. The song will also be on iTunes, and we’ll do all of that – the video, iTunes – in conjunction with the song being on the show. It’ll be an all-out blast.