The 10 Weirdest Star Trek Guest Stars
For over fifty years, science fiction fans have boldly gone where no man has gone before through the TV shows and movies of Star Trek. Created by Gene Roddenberry as a vision of a better tomorrow for mankind, the characters and concepts of Star Trek have stood the test of time and continue to influence generations of writers, artists, and scientists.
And while attention is often paid to the technology that Star Trek seemed to have imagined long before it became a reality, the show has more going for it than just flip phones. Over the nearly six decades of stories, Star Trek has welcomed many famous people to the future. Some of these actors or other dignitaries were famous before they transported onto the Enterprise, while others were just starting their careers. Here are the 10 weirdest Star Trek guest stars...
10 Kirsten Dunst
A year before Kirsten Dunst stole the spotlight from Tom Cruise and Brad Pitt in Interview with the Vampire, the young actress lent her talents to Star Trek: The Next Generation in Season 7, Episode 7, "Dark Page" playing Hedril. In the episode, Dunst reminds Lwaxana Troi, mother of Deanna Troi, of her dead daughter Kestra. Lwaxana had suppressed the memories of her daughter for years, and seeing Dunst's Hedril brought back the feeling of grief and guilt over the young girl's death. While not considered a classic episode of Next Generation, it is relatively well-liked.
9 Clint Howard
The brother of director Ron Howard, Clint Howard has made a name for himself as a character actor who had appeared in Adam Sandler's The Waterboy, Tom Hanks' That Thing You Do!, and the Austin Powers movies. But for Star Trek fans, he will always be Balok, the antagonist of the classicStar Trek: The Original Series episode "The Corbomite Maneuver".
What makes Clint Howard's appearance in the episode so memorable is that he was just seven-years-old when he played the role, with his voice dubbed over by an adult. It was this kind of out of the box thinking that makes Star Trek stand out from the crowd; the idea that a seven-year-old boy could be the adult alien who almost destroyed the Enterprise.
8 Abdullah II, King of Jordan
This is the kind of thing you'd think would happen more often. Abdullah II, King of Jordan, was just the Crown Prince of Jordan when he contacted the producer of Star Trek and asked to appear on one of the shows. Abdullah II is a big Star Trek fan and he figured that if being the Crown Prince was worth anything, it could at least get him onto one of his favorite shows.
The King of Jordan appeared on Star Trek: Voyagerin Season 2, Episode 20, "Investigations " as a crew member of the ship's science division. Because he wasn't a member of the Screen Actors Guild, the then-Crown Prince wasn't given any lines.
7 Kelsey Grammer
Best known for playing Dr. Fraiser Crane for twenty years, Kelsey Grammer used his celebrity to get himself a cameo on Star Trek: The Next Generation, fulfilling a dream he had when he was a child watching the original series. Grammer played Capt. Morgan Bateson in Season 5, Episode 18, "Cause and Effect", which saw the crew of the Enterprise trapped in a time loop that always ends with the destruction of the ship.
Producers had hoped to get Grammer's Cheers co-star Kirstie Alley to also appear in the episode. Alley would have reprised her role as Lt. Saavik from Star Trek II: The Wrath of Khan, but her asking price was more than the show's budget could afford.
6 Iggy Pop
Where Abdullah II, King of Jordan and Kelsey Grammer willed their appearances on Star Trek into existence, it was executive producer and writer Ira Steven Behr who got Iggy Pop to appear on Star Trek: Deep Space Nine. A longtime fan of the musician, Behr had originally written a role for Iggy Pop in Season 3, Episode 12's "Past Tense: Part II", but the punk rocker wasn't available and the role went to Clint Howard.
Behr finally realized his dream when Iggy Pop appeared on Season 6, Episode 10, "The Magnificent Ferengi" as Yelgrun, a Vorta clone who served the Dominion. Iggy Pop can be seen nursing his left arm throughout the episode. That is because of an injury he received the night before filming when he dislocated his shoulder during a stage dive at a concert.
5 Dwayne Johnson
Long before he was starring in blockbuster movies like Jumanji: Welcome to the Jungle and The Fate of the Furious, Dwayne Johnson was best known for his work in the squared circle as the wrestler called The Rock. At the time, both Star Trek: Voyager and WWF Smackdown! were both airing on the same network, UPN, and Paramount Studios wanted something to help bump up the ratings of Voyager. The Rock was one of the biggest wrestlers in the world, and he was chosen to guest star in Season 6, Episode 15, "Tsunkatse" as a Pendari known only as Champion who fights Seven of Nine in a gladiatorial battle to the death.
4 Stephen Hawking
Easily considered one of the most brilliant men to ever live, Stephen Hawking was a huge Star Trek fan who got to live out a dream every Trekkie dreams of; being on the Enterprise. In this case, Hawking was given a special honor - he is the only person in Star Trek's history to play themself.
Hawking joins Data, Albert Einstein, and Isaac Newton for a game of poker in Season 6, Episode 26, "Descent ". Obviously, Hawking, Einstein, and Newton are all holograms that Data has programmed to play the card game with him, but for the theoretical physicist, it was a true moment of geeking out.
3 Christian Slater
By 1991, Christain Slater was already a well-known actor and a teen heartthrob, having appeared in Heathers, Pump Up the Volume, and Robin Hood: Prince of Thieves. With his name recognition, it isn't any surprise that the producers of Star Trek VI: The Undiscovered Country would want to have him appear in their movie. What is surprising is the role he played; Excelsior Communications Officer.
Why did the star play such a small role? Like others on this list, Slater grew up loving Star Trek, and when his mother, Mary Jo Slater, was hired to be the movie's casting director, she snuck her son in for a small cameo. Supposedly, Christian Slater never cashed the $750 check he received for his one line, choosing instead to frame it.
2 Whoopi Goldberg
When Whoopi Goldberg first heard that a new Star Trek TV series was being created, she reached out to the producers asking to audition for a role. The producers thought that someone was playing a joke on them and didn't respond. It wasn't until Goldberg had lunch with Gene Roddenberry that they took her request seriously.
For Goldberg, the original Star Trek was a seminal show for her. It was, after all, the first major science fiction show or movie to feature an African-American in a prominent role. After the lunch, Roddenberry created the character of Guinan specifically for Goldberg to play.
1 Melvin Belli
Melvin Belli was known as the lawyer to the stars and is best remembered in history for being the attorney for Jack Ruby, the man who shot Lee Harvey Oswald in retaliation for the assassination of President John F. Kennedy. Belli also gained some notoriety in 1969 when the serial killer known only as the Zodiac agreed to speak to him over the phone during a morning new program. The killer later sent Belli a letter as well. Belli is played by Brian Cox in David Fincher's Zodiac.
Belli appeared on Star Trek: The Original Series' last season in the episode "And the Children Shall Lead" playing Gorgan, a noncorporeal being on the planet Triacus who drove the adults of an exploration party insane and convinced their children to help him try to take over the universe.