John Barrymore was hired to play Lazarus in “The Alternative Factor,” an episode from the first season. On the day of the final costume fittings, the actor was given a revised script. He left for a lunch break and never came back. According to casting director Joe D’Agosta, Barrymore rejected the role after reading the revised script.
He absolutely refused to come back to the set. Production was irate. It was a crucial time to lose an actor. They petitioned the Screen Actors Guild and had Barrymore suspended for six months. To be fair, there were a few incidents like this during the show’s run.
The Captain Died Three Times
But in “Star Trek Generations,” the 1994 film, it was for real. The first time, he was only believed to be dead. The second time, he was killed by radiation poisoning but revived with a special serum. In “Star Trek Generations,” Kirk was killed in a brutal battle with archenemy Dr. Tolian Soran (Malcolm McDowell), the villain set upon destroying an entire planetary system. Kirk fought valiantly.
Producers allowed Shatner to add one last line to Captain Kirk’s death scene. Gazing into the future, he utters, “Oh, my,” thereby dying with the trademark curiosity and optimism we’ve learned to love about Captain Kirk.
Shatner Did Not Watch a Single Episode
Nor has he watched any movie or TV show he’s done. The man, apparently, does not like to see himself on the screen. He calls it a “painful” experience. He did view one, the 1989 “Star Trek V” film, but only because he directed it. He divulged his little secret recently to “People” magazine when he turned 90.
He said he just does not like watching himself on television. Oddly, he also said that he has saved nothing from his time making the original sci-fi series, not one tunic nor one bit of memorabilia. Surprising when you consider his reputation as an egomaniac.
Oops! A Misfire With Dr. Mccoy’s Wardrobe
In the episode “Mudd’s Women,” Harry Mudd, the intractable baddie takes center stage. He sends over a trio of sirens to seduce Enterprise crewmembers. McCoy (Jackson DeForest Kelley), Scotty (James Doohan), and Spock are faced with the entrancing women. As a Vulcan, Spock is most curious about his crewmates’ reactions. However, in the shoot, the Starfleet’s chief medical officer’s demeanor did not elicit the effects showrunners desired.
So, they used found footage that portrays a more fitting expression. The only problem is that his wardrobe is different from the original when they cut to it. Another result of budget constraints.
More From the Trek Budget
“Star Trek” was cash strapped and expensive to make. The network demanded crew adventures on different planets, but those cost money. There was barely enough money to costume the crew. Costume designer William Theiss did his best. He would shop for used fabric, but it was still too much to have the Enterprise tunics tailored.
His solution was to go behind the union-only network policy to get them made. He set up a little (undocumented) workshop in a nearby apartment building. The nonunion seamstresses would work all night and furtively deliver the costumes through the back window of the studio.