Star Trek Guide

Patrick Stewart Recalls Animosity From Star Trek Creator Gene Roddenberry

One of Patrick Stewart's most iconic roles is playing Captain Jean Luc Picard in Star Trek: The Next Generation. However, that casting almost didn't happen.

Stewart recently sat down with Variety, where he confirmed that Star Trek creator, Gene Roddenberry, was against using him for the role of Picard. Variety writes that Roddenberry felt Stewart was, "too old and too bald to succeed Shatner's swaggering James T. Kirk." According to Stewart, Roddenberry even sent a memo to Paramount which said, "I do not want to hear Patrick Stewart's name mentioned ever again in connection with 'Next Generation.'"

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"God, I wish he had not died when he did," Stewart said. The actor reflected on this experience, saying, "I have a lot of respect for Gene, and I have to say also gratitude." Apparently, Roddenberry paid weekly visits to the set during filming. In regards to this, Stewart claimed, "I know more than once, I caught him sitting in his director's chair looking at me, and I knew he was thinking, 'How the fuck did we end up with this guy?'"

Since then, Picard has become one of the most recognizable Star Trek characters. He's even getting his own spin-off for the CBS All Access show, Star Trek: Picard in which, Stewart will reprise his legendary role.

Star Trek: Picard stars Patrick Stewart, Alison Pill, Michelle Hurd, Evan Evagora, Isa Briones, Santiago Cabrera and Harry Treadaway. The series is set to premiere on CBS All Access Jan. 23, 2020.