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Go Back   The Trek BBS > Star Trek TV Series > The Next Generation

The Next Generation All Good Things come to an end...but not here.

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Old September 20 2010, 08:22 PM   #31
Admiral Buzzkill
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Re: Acting jobs drying up?

indolover wrote: View Post
Dennis wrote: View Post
I wrote two episodes of TNG about twenty years ago, and that's the extent of my professional career as a television writer - I was a fortunate enthusiast who was able to take advantage of an opportunity that presented itself.
Cool. Did you get an opportunity to write on DS9 or Voyager?
I never tried to pitch DS9. I pitched Voyager a couple of times, to no avail. They were always really encouraging, though - it was a bit of a thrill to be told "you should be in here pitching every week" by one of my favorite TNG/Voyager writers - and one thing that happened was really fun: I pitched a story and was told "we're doing that one already and I'm telling you that with the understanding that you won't breathe a word of it" because it was seen as a game-changing kind of event.
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Old September 21 2010, 01:23 AM   #32
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Re: Acting jobs drying up?

Don't the cast get royalties from all the re runs of the series? And dvd sales? None of them look like they are starving.

In fact a few look the opposite
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Old September 21 2010, 07:06 AM   #33
Destructor
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Re: Acting jobs drying up?

Dennis wrote: View Post
it was seen as a game-changing kind of event.
Nothing game-changing ever happened on Voyager! The game was constantly the same!
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Old September 21 2010, 04:59 PM   #34
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Re: Acting jobs drying up?

Deckerd wrote: View Post
wissaboo wrote: View Post
3) Brandon Frasier does about a movie a year. None of them are very big lately, but I'm sure he still gets paid.
Who's Brandon Frasier?

I went to see an actor called Brendan Fraser in London theatreland a few years ago, playing Brick in Cat on a Hot Tin Roof. He was really rather good. Then he went on to do those awful Mummy films which must have sunk without a trace.
I assume that's who they meant. I saw a trailer for a new "family film" he's starring in, where he gets to act with CGI animals, as well as take pratfalls with them, etc.

Doug
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Old September 21 2010, 05:11 PM   #35
Admiral Buzzkill
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Re: Acting jobs drying up?

Destructor wrote: View Post
Dennis wrote: View Post
it was seen as a game-changing kind of event.
Nothing game-changing ever happened on Voyager! The game was constantly the same!
Whatever.

S3CT1ON31 wrote: View Post
None of them look like they are starving.

In fact a few look the opposite
Indeed - a few are approaching the point where they could mingle unnoticed in the audience at a Trek convention.
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Old September 21 2010, 05:24 PM   #36
TV's Frank
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Re: Acting jobs drying up?

S3CT1ON31 wrote: View Post
Don't the cast get royalties from all the re runs of the series? And dvd sales? None of them look like they are starving.

In fact a few look the opposite
True, but maybe they actually want to keep doing that job they love, you know? The job they studied and practiced and get a lot of satisfaction from? Why is it so difficult to understand that even when an actor is receiving considerable money from royalties that they might still want to - GASP - act in film and on stage once in awhile?
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Old September 21 2010, 05:55 PM   #37
Gary7
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Re: Acting jobs drying up?

Being an actor is a brutal job. There's so very few who get into that position of "I've made it--I'm in demand and THEY seek me out, instead of the reverse." And then there's all the supporting people that made it all happen--writers, set designers, producers, stage hands, etc, who don't get the kind of glory that the actors do.

There's also the issue of being typecast. You get a role on a sci-fi series, get recognized for it, but then find yourself having difficulty doing anything else but sci-fi. Or... the role you had was very limiting and so you're not viewed as a "versatile" actor, simply because you weren't given the chance to show all your wares.

Unfortunately, the landscape of entertainment is changing yet again... there's so much junk out there. Costly productions just can't compete. And when you start cutting costs, you don't invest in the talent you need to make the production really successful--you go for the short term goal of keeping it less expensive. Then quality suffers, ratings get bogged down...

You do see some actors break out of the typecast mold... I've spotted a number of Star Trek regular actors who have gotten supporting roles in other series. A greater number do just sporadic character roles... that's probably much easier to score than a regular gig on another show.

As for Frakes, well, I wouldn't call him a very talented actor. That's probably why the acting jobs noticeably "dried up" for him. He seems to have more talent as a director. Good for him, finding his niche.
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Old September 21 2010, 06:04 PM   #38
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Re: Acting jobs drying up?

NCC-1701 wrote: View Post
Jeff O'Connor wrote: View Post
Dennis, if you don't mind asking, what's your history with the WGA? What have you done? If for any reason you don't feel comfortable answering, that's cool.
Well, he's that guy.
Dennis, congrats on your work. I understand you were more on the early draft side, but these were among the much better stories in the TNG series.

Back when TNG had a script writers manual available for anybody to give it a go, I got one and wrote up a script. It was a "part II" to the "A Matter of Time" episode, about the 22nd century guy masquerading as observer Professor Berlingoff Rasmussen from the 26th century. But unfortunately by the time it was read, the series was being prepared for the wrap up. I was thanked for the submission, given an apology for being "too late for consideration". I was bummed... Anyway, did you go the same route, just a bit earlier in the series run?
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Old September 22 2010, 05:32 AM   #39
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Re: Acting jobs drying up?

Ha! I, also, submitted a script to Voyager, which was the sequel to the episode where Harry Kim dies and is replaced by Harry Kim from a slightly different timeline (Parallels), which posited that the 'original' Harry Kim who was flushed out into space was revived by the Vidiians as an experimental research subject*. I submitted it during the 4th season and was declined and thanked for my time (no 'sequels' were accepted from out-of-house writers, which may have influenced your script also, Gary7), but was surprised to note that certain elements of it were incorporated into the 5th season opener (Night) had a scene that was extremely similar to one of the scenes from my spec. Probably a coincidence, but it's nice to think I played a small part in the Voyager tapestry.

*I did post the script here on the BBS after it was rejected, but that was a long time ago, prior to the big BBS reboot of a few years ago, and it's not longer here. Might be able to dig it out of my archives...
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Old September 29 2010, 05:45 AM   #40
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Re: Acting jobs drying up?

Hi Dennis

I hope you don't mind me asking you this (I like the eps you wrote for) but can you elaborate as comfortably as you want to as to how you got the opportunity to write for TNG?

What was it like to actually write an episode? Did you have someone like Michael Piller giving you notes as you wrote, or were you allowed to basically hammer out a draft straight through (or along with another writer)?

Did you meet/see or interact with Roddenberry?

Did you mingle or hang out with some of the other "regular" writers, such as Ron Moore?
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Old September 29 2010, 06:20 AM   #41
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Re: Acting jobs drying up?

Malleus wrote: View Post
Jonathan Frakes had these words to say in the most recent interview:

“Thank God I learned this second craft [directing],” he said. “I really don’t know how I’d be supporting my family. I’d be looking for another kind of gig.”
Other actors, including his wife Genie Francis, and his Star Trek co-workers have also seen jobs dry up, with one notable exception. “Genie isn’t working the way she used to and my peers as actors – at least from the Star Trek guys, with the exception of Patrick [Stewart] – are struggling as well,” said Frakes. “Some of it is by choice, granted, some of it is just by the double-edged sword that Star Trek has been for all of us.”
Source: http://www.startrek.com/article/inte...onathan-frakes

I know Brent Spiner has been seeking new acting roles, but I would really like to know if Frakes is accurate or is exaggerating.

Why do I suspect I could retire off the money Frakes made off of TNG?
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Old October 1 2010, 11:56 PM   #42
TheMurph
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Re: Acting jobs drying up?

I've always like Frakes more as a director than as an actor, then again I've not really watched anything he's acted in other than TNG. As for the others, I've seen them in some movies here and there, and let us not forget voice acting, which Michael Dorn seem to do quite a bit. Also, I seem to recall seeing somewhere that Brent Spiner was doing some theatre.
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Old October 2 2010, 12:03 AM   #43
JarodRussell
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Re: Acting jobs drying up?

Gary7 wrote: View Post
Being an actor is a brutal job. There's so very few who get into that position of "I've made it--I'm in demand and THEY seek me out, instead of the reverse." And then there's all the supporting people that made it all happen--writers, set designers, producers, stage hands, etc, who don't get the kind of glory that the actors do.
Tell me a job where this is any different. From hairdresser to doctor, there's always only a few of them who "made it". The rest is just going along like everyone else. And every job has supporting jobs that make it all happen. Do you know the name of Steve Jobs' secretary?
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Old October 2 2010, 10:12 PM   #44
Joel_Kirk
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Re: Acting jobs drying up?

Dennis wrote: View Post
S3CT1ON31 wrote: View Post
None of them look like they are starving.

In fact a few look the opposite
Indeed - a few are approaching the point where they could mingle unnoticed in the audience at a Trek convention.
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Old October 4 2010, 03:29 AM   #45
Destructor
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Re: Acting jobs drying up?

JarodRussell wrote: View Post
Gary7 wrote: View Post
Being an actor is a brutal job. There's so very few who get into that position of "I've made it--I'm in demand and THEY seek me out, instead of the reverse." And then there's all the supporting people that made it all happen--writers, set designers, producers, stage hands, etc, who don't get the kind of glory that the actors do.
Tell me a job where this is any different. From hairdresser to doctor, there's always only a few of them who "made it". The rest is just going along like everyone else. And every job has supporting jobs that make it all happen. Do you know the name of Steve Jobs' secretary?
I'm pretty sure anyone who wants to be a hairdresser is a hairdresser. For every actor there are at least nine people who want to be an actor, are trying to be an actor, and are not actors.
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