Category Archives: Hey! That Guy was on Star Trek!

“Hey That Guy Was on Star Trek!” — To Kill a Mockingbird (1963)

I was just watching the marvelous To Kill a Mockingbird recently, such a beautiful film, and one of my forever favorites. Gregory Peck as Atticus is one of my all time heroes, and the entire movie was perfectly cast.

For those of you unfamiliar with it, To Kill a Mockingbird recalls the tale of young Scout Finch (Mary Badham) growing up in Alabama during the Depression, her father Atticus is a trial lawyer.  When Atticus is called upon to defend a black man accused of rape, we see the tale unfold through Scout’s eyes. It’s a tale of prejudice and suspicion, but also a tale of the simple wonders of childhood, and how Scout learns compassion and tolerance.  I cannot recommend it enough. (And as for the new prequel, Go Set a Watchman– at first I was eager to read it, but now not so much as Atticus has been recast late in his life as a bigot…Can’t bring myself to read it–Yet.)

Anyway, it may seem trivial to point all the actors here who also appeared on Star Trek, but it just goes to show how caring the casting directors of Trek took great care to hire the best character actors. Enjoy.

First of all, Atticus’ friend and Sheriff of the town, Heck Tate, is played by Frank Overton, who TOS fans recognize as  Elias Sandoval from This Side of Paradise:

Frank Overton as Heck Tate and Elias Sandoval

Frank Overton as Heck Tate and Elias Sandoval

Scout’s summertime friend Dill Harris is played by  a tiny John Megna, who would grow quite a bit a mere three years later to play the nasty ‘Bonk Bonk!” boy in Miri:

John Megna

John Megna as little Dill, and as the “Bonk, Bonk!” boy in ‘Miri’

The father of the mysterious neighbor Boo Radley is played by  veteran actor Richard Hall, who was also Goro in The Paradise Syndrome. 

Richard Hall

Richard Hall as Mr. Radley and as Goro

At the trial, Judge Taylor is Paul Fix, who’d be Dr. Mark Piper in Where No Man Has Gone Before.

Paul Fix as the Judge and as Dr. Piper.

Paul Fix as the Judge and as Dr. Piper.

Atticus’ opponent, Prosecutor Mr. Gilmer is played perfectly by the versatile  William Windom, who cemented his Trek fame as Commodore Decker in The Doomsday Machine.

William Windom

William Windom as Prosecutor Gilmore and as Commodore Matt Decker.

And finally, although he wasn’t in the original series, the poor defendant, Tom Robinson, is played with heartbreaking anguish by Brock Peters.  Peters would later have prominent roles in Star Trek IV (Voyage Home) and Star Trek VI (Undiscovered Country) as Admiral Cartwright and in Star Trek Deep Space Nine as Joseph Sisko, the father of Commander Sisko  🙂

Brock Peters as

Brock Peters as Tom Robinson, Admiral Cartwright, and as Joseph Sisko.

Hey That Guy was on Star Trek! Marplon & Zarabeth in the Jungle…

Found another one! It’s Drums of Africa (1963), an exciting tale of love and slavery in the darkest continent!  that is, A teen dream musical with Frankie Avalon!  What I mean to say is, it’s marvelous  really a marvelous piece of crap!IMG_8932

Let’s see…A guy goes to Africa in the 1910’s to survey a railroad site for his boss, brings along his boss’s lightweight teen son and goes on safari, employing ‘the best guide in Africa’ and falling for the lovely young missionary woman who works with the guide.  Unfortunately, there are greedy slavers loose in the jungle, and his lady love is their main target!   Sounds exciting right?  Well…

Here’s our hero, David Moore (Lloyd Bochner, right) and teen-sidekick-that-he-didn’t-want-to-bring-along Brian Ferrers (Frankie Avalon) seeking out their guide. IMG_8942

With all this nice manliness on screen, the film inexplicably gives viewers a major beefcake valentine of…Marplon! (Torin Thatcher as Jack Cuortemayn ) IMG_8935IMG_8937

 

(Okay, Sorry about that — I better cleanse your memory palate here…)

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Much better.

Anyway, Marplon spends the rest of the movie proving his virility to the other two guys by insisting on keeping his shirt unbuttoned…

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And on the way out of his office, who should come screaming out of the jungle and into the arms of our hero but Zarabeth.(Mariette Hartley as Ruth Knight)IMG_8940

 

She’s being chased by slavers who  find her pure whiteness a  perfect target for their evil trade.   Zarabeth’s  Ruth’s fresh faced beauty has  the three  men gaga for her and pitching woo.  Of course for Frankie, that means–IMG_9252

Aaaaugggh!   And what a sappy number it is (The River Love)

This was a step down for Hartley’s career. She had recently finished the brilliant  Ride the High Country and compared this  job to going from president to janitor in two days. Of course she’s virginal and sweet here, and has been too busy in her young life to know love.  In one of queasiest moments of dialogue, Marlpon confides in Zarabeth that the only problem with their relationship is that they’re friends.  Ugh! IMG_8946 But Zarabeth isn’t into a May-December with Marplon, or a  December-May with Frankie, and despite the awesome gorgeousness of Marplon’s man-servant Kasongo (Hari Rhodes)…

See?

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

…she can’t help but find herself attracted to bland white bread David (no surprise there).  But first she has to do an obligatory Dove soap commercial… IMG_8950

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He meets her after she’s squeaky clean, of course, compares trunks with a baby elephant, and she admits that his kiss ‘brought her world alive!”  Please.   Little does she realize that years later, her lover will change his name to Cecil Colby and die while copulating with Edith Keeler (In her Alexis Karrington years) on Dynasty!  But that’s another post…  IMG_8951 IMG_8955

IMG_8956 IMG_8958After much inter-cut animal action from King Soloman’s Mines, the pair live happily ever after in the jungle.  Did the railroad come through? Did Marplon ever button his shirt?  Did Frankie find Annette?  Can’t remember, think I fell asleep…  All in all 2 stars our of 5.

 

 

Hey, That Guy Was on Star Trek! — Biblical Edition

Hey Kids,

Here’s the next in my series of familiar faces you may recall from Star Trek in some of their other ventures.  This time, Bible epics!   This past week saw lots of Easter-themed movies on TV, and Trek extras were all over these.

First and foremost: King of Kings (1961) which starred Captain Pike himself, Jeffrey Hunter, as The Christ.  Hollywood always picks a beautiful man to play the Savior, and Jeff was one of the most beautiful!  The camera loves his sky blue eyes.  Yet this Jesus must be highly fastidious, as he apparently  shaves his armpits!   Alas, despite his remarkable easiness on the eyes, Hunter’s Jesus just isn’t as passionate as I hoped he’d be, and comes off a little dull.   He needs a phaser rifle or something…

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Then, in another great epic made just a few years later, you can’t swing a dead tribble without hitting someone who guest-starred on Star Trek;  it’s The Greatest Story Ever told (1965) which starred Max Von Sydow as Jesus, and a cast of thousands that boasted at least a dozen cameos of A-list stars of the time (Claude Rains, Jose Ferrer, John Wayne,Donald Pleasance, Ed Wynn, Roddy McDowall, Sidney Poitier, Dorothy McGuire) and a host of actors who would become famous for their TV Roles (Telly Savalas, Martin Landau, and David McCallum).  …Greatest Story was far superior to King of Kings, and it’s one of my favorite tellings of the passion of Christ*.   But get a load of how many familiar faces you’ll see here:

First, one of the three kings is…Sarek!

Mark Lenard as Balthazaar and Sarek.

Mark Lenard as Balthazaar and Sarek.

2)  Advisor Aben to Herod is…Ayelborne!

John Abbott as Aben and Ayelborne.

John Abbott as Aben and Ayelborne.

3) An old man who holds Jesus’ hands at the temple is..Dr. Robert Johnson!

Felix Locher as Old Man and Dr. Robert Johnson

Felix Locher as Old Man and Dr. Robert Johnson

4) One of Herod’s Centurions is…Kang!

Michael Ansara as Centurion and Kang.

Michael Ansara as Centurion and Kang.

5) Another Centurion is…the Klingon Lieutenant from Errand of Mercy!

Victor Ludin as Centurion and Klingon Lieutenant.

Victor Ludin as Centurion and Klingon Lieutenant.

6) Alexander, an informant of the Sanhedrin is…. Commissioner Ferris!

John Crawford as Alexander and Commissioner Ferris.

John Crawford as Alexander and Commissioner Ferris.

7) The sad woman a the gate watching the trial of Jesus is… T’Pau!

Celia Lovsky as Woman at Gate and T'Pau.

Celia Lovsky as Woman at Gate and T’Pau.

8) An old man who defends Jesus is also a survivor of Talos IV!…

Leonard Mundie as Jesus defender and Talos IV survivor.

Leonard Mundie as Jesus defender and Talos IV survivor.

9) Joseph of Arimathea is…The Thasian from Charlie X

Abraham Sofaer as Joseph of Arimathea and Thasian

Abraham Sofaer as Joseph of Arimathea and Thasian

*my favorite version of The Passion is 1978’s Jesus of Nazareth

10) And finally, a shout out to David McCallum, who plays Judas here.  Of course McCallum is famously known as Ilia Kuriakin from The Man From U.N.C.L.E., and Ducky on NCIS, and yeah, he was (sadly) never on Trek, but he is within one degree of Star Trek by being married at the time to Jill Ireland, who played Leila in This Side of Paradise!  (And both Nimoy and Shatner appeared together in one episode of U.N.C.L.E.!)  So here’s some McCallum for all you fangirls – He’s so beautiful here; what a fine young man.

David McCallum as Judas (*Sigh!*)

David McCallum as Judas (*Sigh!*)

New Category – “Hey, That Guy was on Star Trek!” (Gambit-1966)

Hey Kids,

I’m an avid classic movie buff and my go-to station on cable is TCM (Turner Classic Movies).   Often I’ll be watching a old flick and suddenly I’ll think,  “Hey! Wasn’t that guy on Star Trek?” Depending on the movie there could be anywhere from 1 to a half dozen or more character actors we’d recognize from Trek. Of course they did a lot of TV too! The casting directors of Trek always found the best actors they could use for the series, many who were seasoned professionals.  It’s fun to see them in their other roles, and nice to know that they were well employed! Here we go…

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It’s Gambit! (Universal 1966) that has FIVE Star Trek guests peppered into its cast…

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Michael Caine as Harry, with his assistant Emile (John Abbott) who we knew on Star Trek as Ayelborne (Errand of Mercy)

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At the airport, he meets Harry Mudd! (Roger C. Carmel as Ram)

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The assistant to the rich guy they’re stealing from is Kodos the Executioner! (Arnold Moss as Abdul)

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The pretty lady selling him lighter fluid is…

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…(a fully clothed) Kara, the dancing girl! (Tanya Lemani) from Wolf in the Fold

And finally, when Nicole (Shirley MacLaine) tries to escape, the agent (right) at the airport is Jo Jo Kracko! (Vic Tayback) from A Piece of the Action.

Gambit was a fun movie and I recommend it for a good escape. See you next time on “Hey,That Guy was on Star Trek!”