For 15 years, the crew of Star Trek: The Next Generation upheld the values of the Federation through seven TV seasons and four motion pictures, all in the name of the Trek fandom. But believe it or not, there was almost a last minute change up to the crew roster in the last movie. In particular, it sounds like Marina Sirtis' Deanna Troi was almost absent from the final adventure in the Enterprise-E's run, Star Trek: Nemesis, and it was all thanks to negotiations over pay. Had things progressed further, there were threats to replace her with Star Trek: Voyager's Jeri Ryan, who played Seven of Nine. As Sirtis recalled:
During the recent Star Trek convention in Las Vegas, the reunion of the Next Generation crew brought up the subject of pay inequality between the male and female cast-members, with Sirtis offering the following anecdote about how Jeri Ryan was almost brought in to fill her place.
It's worth noting that Ryan wouldn't have been the only Star Trek: Voyager cast member to have a role in Star Trek: Nemesis, although Kate Mulgrew's cameo as the promoted Admiral Janeway didn't occur under the fishy circumstances that Marina Sirtis' near dismissal would have presented. Also, by 2002, Ryan had played the role of Seven of Nine for four seasons, making her a bit of a Trek veteran herself. So it's safe to agree that Sirtis' assumption was correct, which would have seriously put Paramount into a difficult position.
The biggest pitfall that Star Trek: Nemesis would have faced, as Trek Movie continued to elaborate, was the re-writes that would have been necessary for the film to work with Seven of Nine taking the place of Deanna Troi. In particular, the tenth Star Trek film saw Troi marrying her series long sweetheart, Commander Will Riker, making for a fan servicing moment to start the last voyage of the Next Generation crew. Of course, the studio's position with the completed and released Star Trek: Nemesis wasn't exactly that much more secure.
Back in 2002, the Star Trek film franchise reached a temporary end after Nemesis attempted to compete, and eventually failed, against The Lord of the Rings: The Two Towers. Ultimately, the brand would take a breather until 2009's Star Trek reboot invigorated the property's chances. That ending might have come a bit sooner has negotiations broken down completely between Paramount and Marina Sirtis, but thankfully Troi and Riker got the proper feature film send off they deserved, along with the rest of their crew members.
Here's hoping the difficult negotiations that Marina Sirtis had to go through aren't part of a pattern, especially with Star Trek: Discovery premiering on CBS All Access on September 24.
CinemaBlend's James Bond (expert). Also versed in Large Scale Aggressors, time travel, and Guillermo del Toro. He fights for The User.
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