Linda Park Interview
Tony Tellado: A lot of people are pretty psyched about this show.
Linda Park: Yeah. It's exciting and they're publicizing it really well and getting it out there to a wide audience.
Tony: There's a great promo video on the website
Linda: Did you see the new one?
Tony: Yes. I had never seen anything like that for a Star Trek series before.
Linda: Yeah. We watched it yesterday. We're all pretty excited by it. It's very techno-action, edgier quality that Star Trek has not had before. Those are fun to see. We're so inside our work to be able to step back and see the excitement an audience might feel because we have been in it for a while now and so consumed by it. But seeing the trailers just goes back to the initial excitement and joy of the show. Of this new prospect that we're all going into. This Star Trek Legacy. It really is overwhelming especially to see the trailers to see ourselves really as the characters. to see what the audience is going to see.
Tony: Jonathan Frakes once said that the audition process for Next Generation was harder than the job how was your audition process ?
Linda: It was a pretty long process. I didn't go in repeatedly for a lot of times but they spent a lot of time looking for actors. The first time that they had seen me what my agent told me was that I was one of the few that they liked. They wanted to get more prospective because they kept wanting to audition more possibilities for the character. But then it turned out that in the end, I was the only one testing for the part. It's good in one sense that there wasn't anybody else that they liked for the part besides me. But the negative is if I didn't get the part there was no so and so got the part because she was so right for it. Because there was no other girl. It was a long process but knowing that the producers did like me that much gave me a lot more confidence in the room when I did go back knowing that they were on my side. They wanted to see me do well. It became a warm audition experience.
Tony: What did stepping into Star Trek feel like ? Was there any baggage to carry along ?
Linda: It's very daunting. It's very overwhelming. And these past couple of weeks have been...the roller coaster ride has been crazy with all the publicity and people are getting more and more excited as we get close to the premiere date. We're being put out in the real world more and that can be daunting because it doesn't exist on Stage 18 on the Paramount lot. It's not between the actors and producers anymore. And that's daunting. Star Trek fans are very loyal but they're also very critical. This is a huge undertaking to pre-date Kirk and Picard and go back to the genesis of Star Trek. Everyone on the crew to the actors, the producers, the directors and the set designers and the lighting technicians have done incredible work. What's great is that the crew has been around some since Next Generation. To see them excited about the show gives us the fuel to work hard. We must be doing something right...these people have been around a long time and for them to get excited about this and constantly tell us this is going to be really big...It's flattering...It's daunting. I can't wait for the premiere. It's a huge mix of feelings. This is my first series...my first time as a regular.
Tony: There's some very good talent on this cast.
Linda: Scott is an incredible captain. I think everyone will be so excited about this new kind of blood that he brings to the line of captains in the Star Trek Legacy. He's a throwback to Kirk in a lot of ways in that space cowboy, adventurer, explorer kind of a Han Solo-esque quality about Jonathan Archer. It's such a great thing to see. It's such an enlivening thing for the rest of the crew. We take our tone from our captain within the show and on the set also. And seeing him have so much fun makes Star Trek fun and real. It gave us the go ahead to have fun and not feel that those boundaries as to what a Star Trek actor should be . We didn't feel those boundaries. The best way we can pay homage to the Star Trek Legacy is to go back to the story and be Hoshi Sato in this situation or Tucker, Captain Archer or T'Pol.
Tony: What do you like best about Ensign Sato ?
Linda: Her humanity. I don't think she has much of a professional cover as many on the crew do because many have been out before on some missions. She's a teacher. That's what she loves to do. That's what she was taken from doing when she goes on board. She trained to go out in space. She was going to leave on the mission two to three weeks that she was actually did. She was totally emotionally unprepared to go out into space especially for this long of a period in what turns out to be a dangerous mission even though they don't realize that when the first venture out. Hopefully the audience will be able to connect to her experience of space because she feels anxiety and fear. And she doubts herself a lot. Languages are a passion for her. That's what beautiful. Yes, there is all this fear but where her strength is in this love of languages in this gift that she has. When she does her job then it's fun because I get to play what's at the heart of her. The explorer in her is discovering new cultures and their languages. There's a lot of growing that can be had and she won't stay static.
Tony: Are there any episodes that feature Sato ?
Linda: Yes. The first space suit episode is about here. She decides actually that she is not cut out for space. She considers telling the captain that she wants to go back to the University. There's a lot that happens during that episode. It's a really nice turning point early on in the series where she can finally accept space. This is where she really takes stock about what is amazing about this experience. She has to swallow her fear and force herself to grow. The director was amazing, Alan Kroeker. People will be blown away. And there's some really creepy scary stuff in this episode. Visually when I saw it. It looked like something out of horror movies so it was great.
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© 2001 Ernest Lilley / SFRevu