Patrick Stewart caused a stir behind the scenes in the first season of Star Trek: The Next Generation in 1987.
The legendary British actor, 83, revealed why he clashed with his cast members and “stormed” off the set of the popular sci-fi series in his new autobiography, Making It So: A Memoir.
The drama erupted after Stewart, who played the lead role of Captain Jean-Luc Picard, felt that co-stars such as Jonathan Frakes, Denise Crosby and Brent Spiner were not taking their jobs seriously enough, according to excerpts from the tape. which was obtained by The Hollywood Reporter.
As Stewart explained, his previous work on the London theater stage left no room for “nonsense”, which is why any initial antics on Star Trek would anger him.
“I could be a serious bastard,” he wrote. “My experiences at the Royal Shakespeare Company and the National Theater were intense and serious.”
Causes a stir: Patrick Stewart caused a stir behind the scenes in the first season of “Star Trek: The Next Generation” in 1987
In the storm: The 83-year-old British actor revealed in his new autobiography “Making It So: A Memoir” why he clashed with his comrades and “stormed” off the set of the popular science fiction series.
“On set, I became angry at the behavior of my colleagues, and that’s when I called the meeting where I lectured the cast about bullshit and responded to Denise Crosby’s response: ‘We have to have fun sometimes, Patrick’” Comment by say, “We’re not here to have fun, Denise.”
“In hindsight, everyone, including me, finds this story hilarious,” he continued.
“But the moment the cast erupted in hysterics over my pompous statement, I didn’t handle it well.”
“I didn’t enjoy being laughed at.” “I stormed off the set into my trailer and slammed the door.”
Stewart said Frakes and Spiner followed him to his trailer to gently let the actor know that he may have “misjudged the situation.”
Acting school: Drama erupted when Stewart felt co-stars like Jonathan Frakes, Denise Crosby and Brent Spiner weren’t taking their jobs seriously enough
Why so serious: As Stewart explained, his previous work on the London theater stage left no room for “nonsense,” so any off-screen antics on Star Trek would annoy him
“He and Jonathan agreed that there was too much tinkering and that a backtrack needed to be made.
“But they also made it clear how disgusting it was for me – and not a case in point for good behavior – that I tried to resolve the matter by lecturing and berating the cast.”
“I had failed to read the room and impose the RSC behavior on people who were used to the way of episodic television – and that was what we were filming, after all.”
Stewart played Picard, the captain of the USS Enterprise, in all seven seasons of Star Trek: The Next Generation, which originally aired from 1987 to 1994.
At the time, Stewart shared the screen with young Hollywood actor Wil Wheaton, whose “youthful confidence” led to Stewart being “put off,” much like the cast’s shenanigans, excerpts from the memoir say.
To be clear, “On set, I became angry at my colleagues’ behavior, and that’s when I called the meeting where I lectured the cast about their nonsense.”
Ego trip: Stewart shared the screen with actor Wil Wheaton (left), whose “youthful confidence” led to Stewart being “turned off,” excerpts from the memoir say
“I felt like the ‘teens in the company’ concept was a little unconventional, but Wil’s youthful confidence also put me off,” he admitted.
“He seemed cocky to me at first. But as I examined my feelings, I realized that they weren’t really about Wil or the idea that he should know his place as a teenage actor – they were a reflection of my own vulnerability.
“Those first few weeks I wish I had had Wil’s trust.”
Of course, Stewart had some time to come to terms with his feelings and take a new approach to adapting the role, as nearly three decades later he starred in Paramount+’s Star Trek: Picard, which ran from 2020 to 2023.