Nana Visitor once wanted to be Captain Janeway

By: H&I Staff     Posted: September 17, 2021, 11:10AM

The search for the right Captain Janeway was a long journey for the producers of Star Trek: Voyager. When it was decided that Janeway would be a woman, the search was narrowed down to high-profile thespians including Erin Gray, Patty Duke, and Geneviève Bujold. 

Bujold herself was originally given the role to star as the Voyager's Captain. However part way through shooting the original pilot for the series, Bujold had realized the role wasn't the right fit for her and departed from the set. The search for Janeway began once again.

At this time Star Trek: Deep Space Nine had begun filming its second season. Nana Visitor who played a prominent part on the DS9 series as Bajoran liaison officer Kira Nerys heard about the studio's Janeway problem. Despite her already long and demanding schedule on her own Star Trek series, Visitor approached producer Rick Berman about possibly commanding the Voyager.

“Can you believe I had the nerve? I accosted Rick Berman in the street right in front of Stage 4 at Paramount and said, 'Why not? Why? Why can’t I?' Because you know, they had the mix-up, and they fired the person they hired, and all of that stuff. And I said, 'I can do both!' … I don’t know what I was thinking. And he was like – he practically patted me on the head, and said, ‘No, we’re gonna get a whole other actress for that,'" said Nana Visitor on asking for the role of Janeway.

Despite having so much on her plate already with DS9, Visitor was eager as anyone could be to be involved in as much Star Trek as she could. Unfortunately, this dual role couldn't work out logistically in any way because it was most likely to have Visitor working at the Paramount studio 24/7.

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