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General Trek Discussion Trek TV and cinema subjects not related to any specific series or movie.

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Old January 3 2013, 04:52 AM   #1
JirinPanthosa
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Actors with the most characters

Which actors on Star Trek, all Star Trek, hold the record for the most different characters played?

Some candidates:


!











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Old January 3 2013, 07:06 AM   #2
TorontoTrekker
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Re: Actors with the most characters

I'm pretty sure it's Vaughn Armstrong - he's played something like 12 different characters. I thought he had said it was over 20 when I met him a few years ago, but IMDb only has 12 or 13, depending on whether his two appearances as a Kreetassan captain on Enterprise were intended to be the same character or not - I don't recall if anything was said in either episode to indicate either way.

(And yes, I'm counting Captain Forrest in "In A Mirror, Darkly" as a different character from Commodore/Admiral Forrest in the rest of Enterprise. )

It's probably well over 20 if you count all of the various video game voices he's done.

OTOH, Jeffrey Combs scores extra points for playing two different characters in the same episode.
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Old January 3 2013, 10:17 AM   #3
Elvira
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Re: Actors with the most characters

Kate Mulgrew by way of Kathryn Janeway. With Janeway's large number multiple personalities, surely she played the most characters.




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Old January 3 2013, 12:28 PM   #4
Dr. Sevrin
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Re: Actors with the most characters

J.G. Hertzler, Randy Oglesby, and Thomas Kopache all did seven or more appearances.
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Old January 3 2013, 02:52 PM   #5
Greg Cox
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Re: Actors with the most characters

Suzy Plakson is up there, too. She's played a Klingon, a Vulcan, an Andorian, and a Q!
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Old January 3 2013, 03:17 PM   #6
Christopher
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Re: Actors with the most characters

I'm sure that, if you got strictly technical about it, the people who've "played" the most characters would be the uncredited stunt doubles and stand-ins, or the voice actors they brought in to do the comm voices of unseen characters. (While rewatching Enterprise as research for my latest Trek novel, I noticed that all the comm voices in a certain stretch of episodes all sounded like the same guy.)

By the same token, if we include the animated series, then James Doohan, George Takei, Majel Barrett, and Nichelle Nichols have dozens of characters each -- Doohan the most, though unfortunately the '90s edition of The Star Trek Concordance incorrectly credited him with many characters played by different uncredited actors (the main one of whom may have been Lennie Weinrib, who did most of the supporting voices in Filmation's '70s Batman series) and sources like Memory Alpha have copied that mistake.
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Old January 3 2013, 08:26 PM   #7
Dr. Sevrin
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Re: Actors with the most characters

I wonder what the reaction is like for character actors as these when they suddenly start getting recognized by fans for appearances on any particular show (not just ST). These people are used to being on a different show every week, in relative obscurity compared to stars, and suddenly they get a following. How do they cope when they stop being an anonymous citizen?
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Old January 3 2013, 11:28 PM   #8
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Re: Actors with the most characters

Melakon wrote: View Post
I wonder what the reaction is like for character actors as these when they suddenly start getting recognized by fans for appearances on any particular show (not just ST). These people are used to being on a different show every week, in relative obscurity compared to stars, and suddenly they get a following. How do they cope when they stop being an anonymous citizen?
It might be fun to interview "the most interesting man in the world." He was a mostly unknown character actor in the 70s who has come to be one of the most recognizable faces in advertising.
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Old January 4 2013, 07:06 AM   #9
RPJOB
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Re: Actors with the most characters

If we're counting stunt players then it's only fair to also count extras. James Lee Stanley has played a number of characters along with being a semi-regular Bajoran deputy.

http://en.memory-alpha.org/wiki/James_Lee_Stanley

He also tells the hilarious story of Star Trek underwear during his live shows.
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Old January 6 2013, 03:41 AM   #10
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Re: Actors with the most characters

Jimmy Doohan, who voiced so many characters on TOS and TAS holds the record.
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Old January 13 2013, 04:14 PM   #11
t_smitts
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Re: Actors with the most characters

If you don't count background, stunts, or voice work, Vaughn Armstrong is king.

Now part of the reason you see so many actors popping up in different roles is that working under all those heavy prosthetics is very difficult, so finding someone who can handle it is rare (hence why they had to recast Quark's mother).

That's not the whole of it, though, because many of those recycled actors played characters with little or no prosthetics. This was going on since the original series and plenty of other shows before that, as well as shows today. (The various "Law & Order" shows do this a LOT! The "CSI" shows do it too. So did "NYPD Blue".)
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Old January 13 2013, 04:29 PM   #12
Forbin
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Re: Actors with the most characters

My first reaction to the thread title was to think of the actor with the longest name.
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Old January 13 2013, 04:31 PM   #13
George Steinbrenner
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Re: Actors with the most characters

Vaughn Armstrong, definitely. I count twelve onscreen characters:

- Captain Korris (TNG "Heart of Glory")
- Gul Danar (DS9 "Past Prologue")
- Telek R'Mor (VOY "Eye of the Needle")
- Seskal (DS9 "When It Rains...", "The Dogs of War")
- Lansor/Two of Nine (VOY "Survival Instinct")
- Vidiian Captain (VOY "Fury")
- AlphaHirogen (VOY "Flesh and Blood")
- Korath (VOY "Endgame")
- Klingon Captain (ENT "Sleeping Dogs")
- Kreetassan Captain (ENT "Vox Sola", "A Night In Sickbay")
- Admiral Maxwell Forrest (ENT regular)
- Captain Maximilian Forrest (ENT "In a Mirror, Darkly")

And a lot of Trek voice work - New Worlds, Armada II, Bridge Commander, Starfleet Command III, Elite Force II.

No Trek actor has ever topped this, or ever will.
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Old January 13 2013, 04:45 PM   #14
Forbin
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Re: Actors with the most characters

Anyhoo - I'd like to nominate Patricia Tallman. She not only played a number of 2ndary and tertiary characters, she stunt-doubled for the female characters... Plus she's a hot redhead.

http://www.imdb.com/name/nm0848191/?ref_=fn_al_nm_1

Acting roles:

Star Trek: The Next Generation
– Timescape (1993) … Alien #2 (uncredited)
– Starship Mine (1993) … Kiros
– Power Play (1992) … Security Officer (uncredited)

Star Trek: Deep Space Nine
– The Muse (1996) … Nurse Tagana (uncredited)
– The Way of the Warrior (1995) … Weapons Officer
– Battle Lines (1993) … Nima (uncredited)

Star Trek: Voyager (TV series)
– Favorite Son (1997) … Taresian Woman (uncredited)

Stunt Double gigs:

Star Trek: The Next Generation
– Suspicions (1993) (stunt double: Gates McFadden - uncredited)
– The Next Phase (1992) (stunt double: Michelle Forbes - uncredited)
– The Outcast (1992) (stunt double: Melinda Culea - uncredited)

Star Trek: Deep Space Nine
– What You Leave Behind (1999) (stunt double: Louise Fletcher - uncredited)
– A Simple Investigation (1997) (stunt double: Dey Young - uncredited)
– Melora (1993) (stunt double: Daphne Ashbrook - uncredited)
– Invasive Procedures (1993) (stunt double: Nana Visitor - uncredited)
– In the Hands of the Prophets (1993) (stunt double: Robin Christopher - uncredited)

Star Trek: Voyager
– Persistence of Vision (1995) (stunt double: Carolyn Seymour - uncredited)
– Heroes and Demons (1995) (stunt double: Marjorie Monaghan - uncredited)

Star Trek: Generations (fight double: Gwynyth Walsh - uncredited, stunts, water fall stunt double: Gates McFadden - uncredited)

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Old January 13 2013, 05:23 PM   #15
Christopher
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Re: Actors with the most characters

t_smitts wrote: View Post
That's not the whole of it, though, because many of those recycled actors played characters with little or no prosthetics. This was going on since the original series and plenty of other shows before that, as well as shows today. (The various "Law & Order" shows do this a LOT! The "CSI" shows do it too. So did "NYPD Blue".)
Right, it's a longstanding practice. In recent years I've been Netflixing old shows like Mission: Impossible and The Rockford Files, and it's interesting to see how many times the same actors show up in different roles, sometimes not that far apart (though rarely more than once per season). I think the most frequent Rockford guest who played a different character each time is probably Ken Swofford, though Gerald McRaney comes close.
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