Kim Cattrall Star Trek VI

Stars Who Trekked

10 Stars You Didn’t Know Played Aliens in Star Trek Movies

Catch an all-day Star Trek movie marathon Wednesday, December 30th starting at 7:15AM on IFC.

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Paramount/courtesy Everett Collection

By Raven Snook 

William Shatner, George Takei and the late Leonard Nimoy may forever be associated with Gene Roddenberry’s groundbreaking sci-fi franchise. However, lots of actors more famous for their work in Cheers, Back to the Future, Sex and the City, and other projects logged time as extraterrestrials in the original ten Star Trek films. Can you recognize these stars under all that latex? Know your celebrity aliens before tuning in to IFC’s Star Trek movie marathon on Wednesday, December 30th starting at 7:15AM.

1. Kirstie Alley as Saavik in Star Trek II: The Wrath of Khan

Years before she played a jock tease on Cheers or came out of Veronica’s Closet, this sitcom star played Lieutenant JG Saavik, a Vulcan Starfleet officer who bombs the no-win Kobayashi Maru training exercise in the first few minutes of Star Trek II: The Wrath of Khan. She spends the rest of the film trying to prove she’s smart and humorless (ironic, given Alley’s future career). Although Saavik returned in Star Trek III: The Search for Spock and Star Trek IV: The Voyage Home, Alley did not because she demanded too much money (she was replaced by Robin Curtis). Hey, as a Scientologist she gets to hang out with real aliens, right?


2. John Larroquette as Maltz in Star Trek III: The Search for Spock

The same year he debuted in the role that would win him four consecutive Emmys–womanizing ADA Dan Fielding on Night Court– Larroquette also played Maltz, a cutthroat Klingon officer serving under Commander Kruge (portrayed by another sitcom star, see below). Although Larroquette’s trademark sarcasm is as buried as his features under makeup, he does have one wry exchange with Kirk, who promises to give him an honorable death in exchange for Maltz’s help, only to later renege. (“You said you would kill me!,” Maltz pleads, to which Kirk replies,  “I lied!”)


3. Christopher Lloyd as Kruge in Star Trek III: The Search for Spock

Great Scott! That really is Doc Brown from Back to the Future playing Klingon Commander Kruge, only he’s driving a Bird-of-Prey warship instead of a homemade DeLorean time machine. Kruge and Kirk play cat-and-mouse throughout the film and, at the end, engage in a knock-down-drag-out fistfight on the dying Genesis planet as molten lava shoots up around them…possibly inspiring a future lava-filled, sci-fi space battle?


4. Kim Cattrall as Valeris in Star Trek VI: The Undiscovered Country

As the gleefully promiscuous Samantha on Sex and the City, Cattrall got herself into some (pun ahead!) sticky situations. But she never broke a man’s heart in quite the same way she does Mr. Spock’s in Star Trek VI. She plays Lieutenant Valeris, Spock’s Vulcan Starfleet protégé who has ulterior motives, but a forced mind meld reveals her guilt. Just listen to that anguished scream — it sounds just like Samantha’s orgasm!


5. Malcolm McDowell as Soran in Star Trek: Generations

Sure he may look human, but Doctor Tolian Soran is actually an El-Aurian scientist who’s so obsessed with entering the extra-dimensional, desire-manifesting realm the Nexus, he’s willing to off anyone who gets in his way, even Captain Kirk. Despite his franchise-changing role, the Clockwork Orange star isn’t a big fan, claiming he actually did Trekkers “a favor” by helping to kill off Kirk, and griping that “Patrick Stewart spouting off for another forty minutes…if you find that exciting, hey go watch paint dry!”


6. Whoopi Goldberg as Guinan in Star Trek: Generations

Decades before the comedian and commentator started spouting her opinions on The View, she played an El-Aurian “listener,” Guinan, a.k.a. the USS Enterprise-D’s trusty bartender/unofficial therapist. As a little girl, Goldberg became a Star Trek fan when she spotted Nichelle Nichols as Lieutenant Uhura and exclaimed, “There’s a black lady on TV and she ain’t no maid!” Once famous, she lobbied for a part and ultimately appeared as Guinan in 28 episodes of Star Trek: The Next Generation plus two movies, always acting super-Zen. The lack of Elisabeth Hasselbeck surely helped.


7. Tom Hardy as Shinzon in Star Trek: Nemesis

A decade before he terrorized one-percenters at the New York Stock Exchange as Bane in The Dark Knight Rises, Hardy was out for Picard’s blood — literally. As Shinzon, a clone of the Enterprise Captain made by the Romulans in secret, he needed a transfusion from Picard to avoid certain death. Talk about daddy issues! He had no love for his Romulan creators, either, and led an army of Remans against both of the races that he felt did him wrong.


8. Ron Perlman as Reman Viceroy in Star Trek: Nemesis

Nope, that’s not Nosferatu. It’s the Reman Viceroy, Shinzon’s right-hand man in his war against, well, seemingly everyone. Previously, Perlman played romantic lion-man Victor in Beauty and the Beast and, later, the titular character in Hellboy, so he’s used to transformative makeup. However, it’s safe to say the Viceroy is his most nauseating role, both outside (for obvious reasons) and in (for participating in the telepathic rape of Deanna Troi. Ew).


9. Tom Morello as a Son’a officer in Star Trek: Insurrection

Paramount

Paramount

Blink and you’ll miss the Rage Against the Machine guitarist’s cameo as an uncredited Son’a officer in Insurrection. A devoted Trekker, Morello begged Trek producer Rick Berman for a bit part, but even though he didn’t have any lines, he still spent five hours in the makeup chair. He had such blast, he subsequently guest-starred on Star Trek: Voyager, although this time he opted to play a human — a lot less latex!


10. Adam Scott as a conn officer in Star Trek: First Contact

OK, so we’re cheating a bit with this last one. Yes, the Parks and Recreation star and Comedy Bang! Bang! guest really was in a Star Trek movie, First Contact to be exact. However, he played a plain old human, and a nameless one at that: USS Defiant’s conn officer. But hey, he drives the ship! When asked about his Star Trek role, he gave an honest response: “For me it was rent at the time but it was fun. Jonathan Frakes was directing, he was a really nice guy, but I was never much of a Trekkie.” That’s Trekker, dude!

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Thank Azaria

Best. Characters. Ever.

Our favorite Hank Azaria characters.

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GIFs via Giphy

Hank Azaria may well be the most prolific voice and character actor of our time. The work he’s done for The Simpsons alone has earned him a permanent place in the pop culture zeitgeist. And now he’s bringing another character to the mainstream: a washed-up sports announcer named Jim Brockmire, in the aptly titled new series Brockmire.

We’re looking forward to it. So much so that we want to look backward, too, with a short-but-sweet retrospective of some of Azaria’s important characters. Shall we begin?

Half The Recurring Simpsons Characters

He’s Comic Book Guy. He’s Chief Wiggum. He’s Apu. He’s Cletus. He’s Snake. He’s Superintendent Chalmers. He’s the Sea Captain. He’s Kurt “Can I Borrow A Feeling” Van Houten. He’s Professor Frink. He’s Carl. And he’s many more. But most importantly he’s Moe Szyslak, the staple character Azaria has voiced since his very first audition for The Simpsons.

Oh, and He’s Frank Grimes

For all the regular Simpsons characters Azaria has played over the years, his most brilliant performance may have been a one-off: Frank Grimes, the scrappy bootstrapper who worked tirelessly all his life for honest, incremental, and easily-undermined success. Azaria’s portrayal of this character was nuanced, emotional, and simply magical.

Patches O’Houlihan

Dodgeball is a “sport of violence, exclusion and degradation.” as Hank Azaria generously points out in his brief but crucial cameo in Dodgeball. That’s sage wisdom. Try applying his “five D’s” to your life on and off the court and enjoy the results.

Harold Zoid

Of Futurama fame. The crazy uncle of Dr. Zoidberg, Harold Zoid was once a lion (or lobster) of the silver screen until Smell-o-vision forced him into retirement.

Agador

The Birdcage was significant for many reasons, and the comic genius of Hank Azaria’s character “Agador” sits somewhere towards the top of that list. If you haven’t seen this movie, shame on you.

Gargamel

Nobody else could make a live-action Gargamel possible.

Ed Cochran

From Ray Donovan. Great character, great last name [editorial note: the author of this article may be bias].

Kahmunra, The Thinker, Abe Lincoln

All in the Night At The Museum: Battle Of The Smithsonian, a file that let Azaria flex his voice acting and live-action muscles in one fell swoop.

The Blue Raja

Mystery Men has everything, including a fatal case of Smash Mouth. Azaria’s iconic superhero makes the shortlist of redeemable qualities, though.

Dr. Huff

Huff put Azaria in a leading role, and it was good. So good that there is no good gif of it. Internet? More like Inter-not.

Learn more about Hank Azaria’s newest claim to fame right here, and don’t miss the premiere of Brockmire April 5 at 10P on IFC.

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Flame Out

Brockmire and Other Public Implosions

Brockmire Premieres April 5 at 10P on IFC.

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There’s less than a month until the Brockmire premiere, and to say we’re excited would be an insulting understatement. It’s not just that it stars Hank Azaria, who can do no wrong (and yes, that’s including Mystery Men, which is only cringeworthy because of Smash Mouth). It’s that the whole backstory of the titular character, Jim Brockmire, is the stuff of legends. A one-time iconic sportscaster who won the hearts of fans and players alike, he fell from grace after an unfortunate personal event triggered a seriously public meltdown. See for yourself in the NSFW Funny or Die digital short that spawned the IFC series:

See? NSFW and spectacularly catastrophic in a way that could almost be real. Which got us thinking: What are some real-life sports fails that have nothing to do with botched athletics and everything to do with going tragically off script? The internet is a dark and dirty place, friends, but these three examples are pretty special and mostly safe for work…

Disgruntled Sports Reporter

His co-anchor went offsides and he called it like he saw it.

Jim Rome vs Jim “Not Chris” Everett

You just don’t heckle a professional athlete when you’re within striking distance. Common sense.

Carl Lewis’s National Anthem

He killed it! As in murdered. It’s dead.

To see more moments just like these, we recommend spending a day in your pajamas combing through the muckiness of the internet. But to see something that’s Brockmire-level funny without having to clear your browser history, check out the sneak peeks and extras here.

Don’t miss the premiere of Brockmire April 5 at 10P on IFC.

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Mirror, Mirror

Portlandia Season 7 In Hindsight

Portlandia Season 7 Now Available Online and on the IFC App.

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Another season of Portlandia is behind us, and oh what a season it was. We laughed. We cried. And we chuckled uncomfortably while glancing nervously around the room. Like every season before it, the latest Portlandia has held a mirror up to ridiculousness of modern American life, but more than ever that same mirror has reflected our social reality in ways that are at once hysterical and sneakily thought-provoking. Here are just a few of the issues they tackled:

Nationalism

So long, America, Portland is out! And yes, the idea of Portland seceding is still less ludicrous than building a wall.

Men’s Rights

We all saw this coming. Exit gracefully, dudes.

Protests

Whatever you stand for, stand for it together. Or with at least one other person.

Free Love

No matter who we are or how we love, deep down we all have the ability to get stalky.

Social Status

Modern self-esteem basically hinges on likes, so this isn’t really a stretch at all.

These moments are just the tip of the iceberg, and much more can be found in the full seventh season of #Portlandia, available right now #online and on the #IFC app.

via GIPHY

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