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Sir Patrick Stewart didn't want 'Star Trek' return

Stewart met with the producers, who 'understood' his viewpoint but went on to explain their own 'vision' for the series - which sparked his interest.

FILE: Patrick Stewart attends the premiere of Columbia Pictures' 'Charlie's Angels' at Westwood Regency Theater on 11 November 2019 in Los Angeles, California. Picture: AFP

LONDON - Sir Patrick Stewart didn't want to return to the Star Trek franchise and had planned to turn down an approach.

The 78-year-old actor will again portray Captain Jean-Luc Picard - who he originally played in Star Trek: The Next Generation from 1987 until 1994 and a number of spin-off movies - in a new series for CBS All Access but he initially planned to reject producers' "polite and enthusiastic" approach to reprise the role because he was convinced his stint with the franchise was "over".

Asked why he wanted to return he admitted: "To be honest, I didn't want to.

"I had determined long ago that my time with Jean-Luc and Star Trek was over.

"I had given everything I could to the character in the series. But when this also came through about two years ago, I agreed with my agent that we would go and attend the meeting with [producers] Alex Kurtzman and Akiva Goldsman, and because their inquiry of me had been so polite and enthusiastic, I wanted to explain to them face-to-face why I was going to pass."

Stewart met with the producers, who "understood" his viewpoint but went on to explain their own "vision" for the series - which sparked his interest.

He added to Vulture: "I did [attend the meeting]. They listened to me talk for half an hour or so.

"They said fine, they understood all that, but they had a few more things they wanted to say and they talked in a little more detail about their vision for Picard.

"There was a lot of information; when the meeting broke up and we left, I said to my agent, 'You know, would you mind asking these people if they could put everything they said in writing so that I can read it, study it, think about it?'

"In less than two days, I had over 30 pages of copy, which I studied very carefully.

"One of the points that I had made in the meeting was that the only possible way I could consider returning to that life would be if, for example - and this was only an example - we did something like Logan, the final X-Men movie I made with Hugh Jackman; then you would have my attention."

The veteran actor was left "intrigued" by their next response and the way they planned to refresh the series entirely.

He said: "They came back with quite a lot to say about that, and they were very enthusiastic about creating a world that was very different from the one that we got used to.

"I met with them again and we talked and talked and I told them about my uncertainties and doubts and little by little I found that they were all being addressed and being addressed in such an interesting way that I was intrigued.

"This was not going to be Star Trek: The Next Generation, Part Two. That's why I said yes."


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